The Highland Lassie

by Robert Burns

Nae gentle dames, tho' e'er sae fair,
Shall ever be my muse's care:
Their titles a' are empty show;
Gie me my Highland Lassie, O.

Within the glen sae bushy, O,
Aboon the plains sae rushy, O,
I set me down wi' right good will.
To sing my Highland Lassie, O.

Oh, were yon hills and valleys mine
Yon palace and yon gardens fine!
The world then the love should know
I bear my Highland Lassie, O.

But fickle fortune frowns on me,
And I maun cross the raging sea!
But while my crimson currents flow,
I'll love my Highland Lassie, O.

Altho' through foreign climes I range,
I know her heart will never change,
For her bosom burns with honour's glow,
My faithful Highland Lassie, O.

For her I'll dare the billow's roar,
For her I'll trace the distant shore,
That Indian wealth may lustre throw
Around my Highland Lassie, O.

She has my heart, she has my hand,
By sacred truth and honour's band!
'Till the mortal stroke shall lay me low,
I'm thine, my Highland Lassie, O!

Farewell the glen sae bushy, O!
Farewell the plain sae rushy, O!
To other lands I now must go,
To sing my Highland Lassie, O!

Notes to the poem:

"This," says the poet, "was a composition of mine before I was at all known in the world. My Highland lassie (Mary) was a warm hearted, charming young creature as ever blessed a man with generous love." For an account of Highland Mary, see the note to the verses entitled "To Mary in Heaven". Years after Highland Mary was dead, her mother, who greatly admired this song, sung it to her grandchildren.

Burns's other poems of Highland Mary
To Mary In Heaven
Burns's Lament to Mary
Highland Mary
Will Ye Go To The Indies, My Mary


The Poetical Works Of Robert Burns
Copyright 1910
Ward, Lock, and Co., Ltd