Hogmanay – A Poem for Burns Day

Interrupting the Highland tour to bring you a flavour of Burns’ Day. I was annotating some Burns poems for the BBC Bitesize website over the Christmas and New Year holiday, and thinking about a guest blogpost I had been asked to write for their Learning Blog. Hogmanay was a still, quietly eerie day in Alloway when I went for a walk, following parts of Tam O’Shanter’s famous and fateful ride, and the most bizarre thing happened. I decided to tell it in verse, given what was going round in my head at the time. So here it is, with apologies to Rabbie!


As I walked out on Hogmanay, towards the kirk at Alloway,

I heard a fracas in the dell, ahint the wa’ in old Rozelle.

A rustlin’ sound amang the trees, came driftin’ o’er in the breeze,

And turnin’ round with dreadfu’ fright, wow I saw an unco sight.

A Boxer dug, big, grim and broad, stood in the middle o’ the road,

And through the eerie silence bode an eldritch voice, crying ‘Oh my God!’

The dug it stood like ane transfixed, afore decidin’ what came next,

When sudden fae its dwam was jolted, off up the road the creature bolted.

Some ancient prehistoric de’ils, put life and mettle in its heels.

Read the rest of the poem here.

Or if you prefer to listen click on the title below!


5 thoughts on “Hogmanay – A Poem for Burns Day

  1. Ah fair enjoyed yer poem Bill.
    Tae read it gied me quite a thrill.
    Yer writing in style o’ the Bard,
    Which monie would find unco hard,
    Haid me hooked frae the very start
    Fur ye had taen Rab’s wurds tae heart.
    He wus a man who loved tae rhyme
    An’ so he did it aw the time.
    He telt us tales frae his ain life,
    Observed man’s foibles & his strife.
    It’s a grand tribute, so it is.
    Tae post on sic a day as this.

  2. Hi Lynne. Thanks for taking the trouble to respond and for getting into the spirit. I don’t think the Bard’s under threat from either of us but it’s the effort that counts, is it not! 🙂

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