Jan. 25, 2001

Green Grow the Rashes

by Robert Burns

Broadcast date: THURSDAY, 25 January 2001

Poem: "Green Grow the Rashes," by Robert Burns.

Green Grow the Rashes

Green grow the rashes, O;
    Green grow the rashes, O;
The sweetest hours that e'er I spend,
    Are spent amang the lasses, O!

There's nought but care on ev'ry han',
    In ev'ry hour that passes, O;
What signifies the life o' man,
    An' 'twere na for the lasses, O.

The warly race may riches chase,
    An' riches still may fly them, O;
An' though at last they catch them fast,
    Their hearts can ne'er enjoy them, O.

But gie me a canny hour at e'en,
    My arms about my dearie, O;
An' warly cares, an' warly men,
    May a'gae tapsalteerie, O!

For you sae douce, ye sneer at this,
    Ye're nought but sensless asses, O:
The wisest man the warl' saw,
    He dearly loved the lasses, O.

Auld nature swears, the lovely dears
    Her noblest work she classes, O:
Her prentice han' she tried on man,
    An then she made the lasses, O.

Green grow the rashes, O;
    Green grow the rashes, O;
The sweetest hours that e'er I spend,
    Are spent amang the lasses, O!

On this day in 1890, the United Mine Workers of America, a labor union of coal miners and coal-mine construction workers, was formed in Columbus, Ohio. Their demands included wages paid in U.S. currency instead of company scrip, the end of child labor, and "a plentiful supply of suitable timber" to stabilize the roofs of mines.

It's the birthday of Virginia Woolf, born Adeline Virginia Stephens in London (1882), best-known for her novels To the Lighthouse (1927), and Mrs. Dalloway (1925) and for her essay, A Room of One's Own (1929).Her home at 46 Gordon Square, in the Bloomsbury section of London, became the regular meeting place of the writers and intellectuals that became known as the Bloomsbury Group. In 1941, she drowned herself in the River Ouse, leaving behind a note for her husband, Leonard:

"I have a feeling I shall go mad.I cannot go on longer in these terrible times.I hear voices and cannot concentrate on my work.I have fought against it, but cannot fight any longer.I owe all my happiness to you but cannot go on and spoil your life."

It's the birthday of writer and dramatist W. Somerset Maugham, born at the British Embassy in Paris (1874), where his father worked as an attorney. His best known novel is a thinly disguised autobiography, Of Human Bondage (1915). Despite his worldly success and great popularity, Maugham was conscious that he was not a great writer, and wrote in his autobiography that he "stood in the very first row of the second-raters."

It's the birthday of poet Robert Burns, born in Alloway, Scotland (1759). He was the son of a poor farmer, the oldest of seven children; when his father died, he inherited the farm, but soon lost it. In his 37 years, Burns managed a fierce amount of both work and carousing. He's best known for the hundreds of songs he wrote or adapted—though he was tone deaf, and couldn't sing very well himself.

Had we never lov'd sae kindly,
Had we never lov'd sae blindly!
Never met—or never parted,
We had ne'er been broken-hearted.

Tonight is celebrated as Burns Night in Scotland, celebrating the birthday of Robert Burns (1759). "Burns suppers" are held across the Scotland; participants will rise to read Burns' poetry and to toast the queen, the laddies, and the lassies.The main dish is haggis, the traditional Scottish dish, and at some point during the evening, a single bagpiper will play "Pipin' in o' the Haggis" and someone will read Burns' poem, "Address to the Haggis," which ends:

"Ye Pow'rs, wha mak mankind your care
And dish them out their bill o fare
Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware
That jaups in luggies:
But, if ye wish her gratefu prayer,
Gie her a Haggis!"

Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®




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