To Miss Cruickshank, a very young Lady


Beauteous rose-bud, young and gay, Blooming on thy early May, Never may'st thou, lovely Flower, Chilly shrink in sleety shower! Never Boreas' hoary path, Never Eurus' pois'nous breath, Never baleful stellar lights, Taint thee with untimely blights! Never, never reptile thief Riot on thy virgin leaf! Nor even Sol too fiercely view Thy bosom blushing still with dew! Mayst thou long, sweet crimson gem, Richly deck thy native stem; Till some evening, sober, calm, Dropping dews, and breathing balm, While all around the woodland rings, And ev'ry bird thy requiem sings; Thou, amid the dirgeful sound, Shed thy dying honours round, And resign to Parent Earth The loveliest form she e'er gave birth.

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Cal Macaninch

About this work

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

Themes for this poem

beauty future

Selected for 05 May

In this effulgently florid offering, it is not just rosebuds that are blooming in early May; the entire poem is somewhat over petalled and posyish. And yet the sentiments are sincere. Jane Cruikshank was the 12-year-old daughter of the Edinburgh schoolmaster with whose family Burns lodged between the autumn of 1787 and February of 1788. She was a fine musician and singer and often performed the poet's songs.

Donny O'Rourke

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