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A Valentine

Dinah Maria Mulock Craik 1826 (Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire) – 1887 (Shortlands, London)



YE are twa laddies unco gleg,
An' blithe an' bonnie:
As licht o' heel as Anster's Meg;--
Gin ye'd a lassie's favor beg,
I' faith she couldna stir a peg
Ance lookin' on ye!

He's a douce wiselike callant--Jim:
Of wit aye ready.
Cuts aff ane's sentence, 't ither's limb,
An' whiles he's daft and whiles he's grim,
But brains?--wha's got the like o'him
In's wee bit heidie?

Dear laddie wi' the curlin' hair,
Gentlest of ony:
That gies kind looks an' speeches fair
To dour auld wives as lassies rare,--
I ken a score o' lads an' mair,
But nane like Johnnie!

And gin ye learn the way to woo,
Hae sweethearts mony,
O laddie, never say ye loe
An' gie fause coin for siller true;
A lassie's sair heart's naething new,--
Mind o' that, Johnnie.

An' dinna change your luve sae fast
For ilk face bonnie,
Lest waefu' want track wilfu' waste,
And a' your youthfu' years lang past,
Ye get the crookit stick at last,
Ochone, puir Johnnie!

But callants baith, tak tent, and when
Bright e'en hae won ye,
Tak each your jo--and keep her--then
Be faithfu' as ye're fond, ye ken,
Or--gang your gate like honest men,
Young Jim and Johnnie.

Sae when auld Time his crookit claw
Sall lay upon ye,
When, Jim, your feet that dance sae braw
Are no the lightest in the ha',
An' a' your curly haffets fa',
My winsome Johnnie,--

May each his ain warm ingle view,
Cosie as ony:
A gudewife sonsie, leal and true,
O' bonnie dochters not a few,
An' lads--sic lads as ye're the noo--
Dear Jim and Johnnie!

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

Dinah Maria Craik (; born Dinah Maria Mulock, also often credited as Miss Mulock or Mrs. Craik) was an English novelist and poet. She is best remembered for her novel John Halifax, Gentleman, which presents the mid-Victorian ideals of English middle-class life.  more…

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