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The Granfather Clock ©
(For Jeanie McCrae And Tam Hogg)

Patrick Scott Hogg
Cumbernauld, Scotland
1985

As I drove oot bi gloomin's hour
On a track whar sheep were led,
'Twas stoney, twisted, fu' o' stoor,
I was thinkin o' a' he'd said.

Foundation stains could still be seen
'Mang grass upo' a rocky shore
Whar Tam had settled wi' his Jean
A strappin' lass, three sons she bore.

An aul' stain biggin, wa's fair wide
'Twas shore built, strong tae last;
'Twas ay sae spick and span inside
Whar mony an hour wis passed.

They'd crack wi' stories aye tae tell
Wi' neighbors roon fir tea
O' bogle tales an' ghouls fae hell
Their hearts aye strong an free.

Wi' hands o' leather they cou'd toil
Wi' plough or hemmers ringin
Wi' pride they worked fertile soil
An' walked weary, hameward singin.

They had a great big jeely pot
A rayburn fire heater;
A tilly lantern lit the cot
Nae hoose was ever neater.

Jean's gypsy een had second sight
She cou'd tell yer life tae be:
She'd read yer palm day or nicht
Or the tea-leafs in yer tea.

Tam's canny face wis rich an' cheery
His ee ay bricht wi' glee
But mony's the day he wis weary
As weary as cou'd be.

Aye, times were hard wi' thrift an' graft
Lang hours t'wud brack yer back;
Jean stitched her artfu' weavin' craft
When winter work wis slack!

'Twas here upon this barren shore
'Twas here ma Da was born;
'Twas here he learned o' Nature’s store
And played in fields o' corn.

'Twas here he learned to love the sea
So calm and deep, serene;
'Twas here his childhood days were free
When innocence was green.

'Twas here he learned to earn his keep -
At seedtime planting store,
Tae thin and sned a field o' neeps -
Keep the wolf frae the door.

Tam played the pipes and Jean wad sing
While beer and wine did flow;
Happiness on contented wing
Like waves, passed too and fro.

I could see it a' in ma ee
Lik being in their hoose
A shire horse comin o'er the lea
Tam, wi' his bonnet loose.

I stood an gazed - ruins noo!
Then heard an eerie chime
Tam's grandfether clock rung true
For the passin years o' time.

I'll drink tae ye Tam, yer pipe an' a,
Tae bonnie Jeannie McCrae;
Tae a' guidfolks that's noo ava
Wha's had their turn o' day.


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