Stanzas 3 and 4: Celebration

Burns' sense of celebration can be regarded as beautifully straightforward:

Welcome! my bonie,

sweet wee dochter

or ironically humorous:

Tho’ ye come here a wee unsought for,

Sweet fruit o’mony a merry dint

This first example could seem sentimental, but is not when juxtaposed with the defiance that preceded it. The second and third examples show that the speaker is not only unashamed by his daughter and is equally unembarrassed about the relationship that produced her.

However a more serious, responsible attitude and therefore tone is shown in the final lines of stanza 4. The Habbie is used to signal this change in its final lines:

In my last plack thy parts be in’t

The better ha’f o’t

A 'plack' was a copper coin of little worth but this is sympbolic of true responsibility. However little the speaker may have to give he will always ensure that his daughter has more than himself. Later, he talks about her personal qualities but the first thing is to provide for her. Not the real turnaround in tone from the jolly sexual reminiscing that began the stanza.