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101 How they heard there a ghaistly yell; But what thro’ fear those loons befell, Let them declare, And how they scamper’d off pell-mell--- O, what a pair! Poor silly gowks, they thought the cry64 Of Sawney, who lay hid hard by, Their boasted courage this to try, Was that of Clootie,65 That darklins came their haste to spy, When sent on duty. But fare ye weel – may you ha’e claes, Wi’ health to roam about the braes, And Guid preserve you a’ your days, Frae Satan’s reach, Is what the muse sincerely prays--- Your’s ---SARAH LEECH.’ Samuel Thomson, November, To Damon (taken from ‘A Year in Twelve Fits’, in New Poems, on a Variety of Different Subjects, 1799). Samuel Thomson (1766-1816) was a schoolmaster and poet, known as ‘The Bard of Carngranny’, who counted Robert Burns, Robert Anderson and James Orr among his extensive Romantic-era, literary network of correspondents. Thomson frequently employs a learned, poetic persona to point fun at local folklore and superstitions, though the recurrence of these themes in his work suggests that Thomson is often on the other hand upholding and preserving the traditions and beliefs of where he lives. ‘November, To Damon Now hoary Winter, cauld an’ keen, 64 Fools. 65 The devil.

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