Flowers of the forest/The Soldier's Return


When wild war’s deadly blast was blawn
And gentle peace returning,
And eyes again with pleasure beam'd,
That had been blear’d wi' mourning.
I left the lines and tented fields,
Whar lang I‘d been a lodger;
A humble knapsack on my back,
A poor but honest sodger.

A leal, light heart was in my breast,
My hand unstain'd wi’ plunder;
And for fair Scotia, hame again,
I cheery on did wander.
I thought upon the banks o’ Coil,
I thought upon my Nancy;
I thought upon the witching smile
That caught my youthful fancy.
At length I reach'd the bonny glen,
Where early life I spurted;
I passed the miil and trysting thorn,
Where Nancy aft I courted;
Wha spied I but my ain clear maid,
Down by her mother's dwelling!
I turn'd me round to hide the flood
That in my een was swelling.

Wi’ alter'd voice, quoth I, sweet lass,
Sweet as yon hawthorn's blossom,
O! happy; happy may he be,
That's dearest to thy bosom!
My purse is light, I've far to gang,
And fain would be thy lodger;
I've serv'd my king and country lang—
Take pity on a sodger!

Sae wistfully she gaz'd on me.
And lovelier her grew than ever;
Quo’ she, a sodger ance I lo'ed,
Forget him shall I never;
Our humble cot and hamely fare.
Ye freely shall partake it;
That gallant badge, the dear cockade,
Ye're welcome for the sake o't.

She gaz'd—she redden'd like a rose—
Syne pale like ony friy,
She sank within my arms and cried,
Art thou my ain dear Willie?
By Him who made yon sun and sky—
By whom true love‘s regarded,
I am the man; and thus may still
True lovers be rewarded!

The wars are o'er, and I'm come hame,
And find thee still true-heart'ed!
Tho’ poor in gear, we're rich in love,
And mair we'se ne'er be parted.
Quo' she, my grandsire left me gowd,
A mailen plenish'd fairly;
And come, my faithfu' sodger lad,
Thou'rt welcome to it dearly.

For gold the merchant ploughs the main
The farmer ploughs the manor;
But glory is the sodger's prize,
The sodger's wealth is honour.
The brave poor sodger ne'er despise,
Nor count him as a stranger,
Remember he's his country's stay,
In day and hour of danger.

This work was published before January 1, 1928, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

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