Answer to an Invitation

The King's most humble servant, I Can scarcely spare a minute; But I'll be wi' you by an' bye, Or else the deil's be in it.


Shirley Henderson

About this work

This is a poem by Robert Burns. It was written in 1789 and is read here by Shirley Henderson.

More about this poem

These lines were supposedly written by Burns on the back of a page torn from his Excise-book, and were preserved at Craigdarroch.

However, doubt has been cast on this hypothesis as Burns has not yet begun his excise career and would therefore not have been in possession of an Excise-book.

The invitation itself is a response to events of, The Whistle – A Ballad, and was first published in 1801.

Ralph McLean

Themes for this poem


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