Happy Robert Burns Day! Rabbie Burns: Scotland’s great Romantic Poet.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Jan 24, 2009
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Robert “Rabbie” Burns is Scotland’s great poet. His 250th birthday is celebrated all over the world every January the 25 with scotch, haggis, song and dance. He was perhaps my parent’s Buddhist teacher Chogyam Trungpa’s favorite warrior poet—probably because he combined sadness at life’s fragility with noble, uplifted heartfelt expression of humankind, love and life. There’s a great noble statue in Halifax, where my mom lives, that I’d pass by most days whenever I was up there, and it’d be the highlight of my day, in a way. A man’s a man for a’that!

His poem, Red, Red Rose when set to song is my favorite sad song ever:

My luve’s like a red, red rose,
That’s newly sprung in June;
My luve’s like the melodie
That’s sweetly play’d in tune.

As fair art thou, my bonie lass,
So deep in luve am I,
And I will luve thee still, my Dear,
Till a’ the seas gang dry

Till a’ the seas gang dry, my Dear,
And the rocks melt wi’ the sun:
I will luve thee still, my Dear,
While the sands o’ life shall run.

And fare thee weel, my only Luve,
And fare thee weel a while!
And I will come again, my Luve,
Tho’ it were ten thousand mile!

The 250th anniversary of the birth of the poet, bard and national icon Robert Burns will be celebrated not only on Jan. 25, with the Burns Night Supper held across the country — as it is every year, with whisky, haggis and neeps and tatties (turnips and potatoes) — but it will go on for all of 2009. The celebration, called Homecoming, will feature over 100 festivals and events that honor the cultural contributions of Burns and of Scotland, including one on Burns’s birthday, called Burns Light. In Dumfries, from 3:30 to 7 p.m., four lantern processions will wind through different routes, past sites like Burns’s house and St. Michael’s church (where he is buried). Via NY Times.

Via Kernscot.com: Robert Burns, affectionately known as Rabbie Burns, is regarded as one of the most famous Scots for his poetry and songs. Throughout the world, Burns Night Suppers are held on or near the day of his birthday, January 25th. Burns Suppers, such as the one held in Bakersfield for the past 37 years, consist of eating haggis, the recitation of Burns’ poetry, and, of course, the tasting of Scotch whisky. You do not have to be a Scot to enjoy the food, the poetry, and the whisky.

Via a letter from a Buddhist community member:

Greetings from Dumfries, where Burns died in 1796.
Just to remind everyone today is 250th anniversary of his birth. And the start of the year of the Homecoming if you are thinking of visiting….
I was told [Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche] said that on reading Burns he discovered the wisdom of the West resided as much in the ordinary people’s culture as in religious institutions. True?
Stories of [Trungpa Rinpoche] and others in Scotland and comments made always much  appreciated.
I am an occasional researcher at Glasgow Uni. in Crichton Campus in Dumfries specialising in Pastorality in Scottish literature including Burns.
And became student of Shambhala Buddhist world on meeting Trungpa Rinpoche 40 years ago this April at Samye Ling.
So happy Burns day and Suppers to all brothers and sisters!
I believe Lincoln thought he was the world’s greatest poet, so connection with your new President in USA..
Have a nice dram !
Arthur Ramsay

Great Chieftain of the Puddin’ Race from Ganesh Tube on Vimeo.

‘The Slave’s Lament’ (of 1792)

It was in sweet Senegal that my foes did me enthral,
For the lands of Virginia, – ginia, O:
Torn from that lovely shore, and must never see it more;
And alas! I am weary, weary O:
Torn from that lovely shore, and must never see it more;
And alas! I am weary, weary O.

All on that charming coast is no bitter snow and frost,
Like the lands of Virginia, – ginia, O:
There streams for ever flow, and there flowers for ever blow,
And alas! I am weary, weary O:
There streams for ever flow, and there flowers for ever blow,
And alas! I am weary, weary O:

The burden I must bear, while the cruel scourge I fear,
In the lands of Virginia, – ginia, O;
And I think on friends most dear, with the bitter, bitter tear,
And alas! I am weary, weary O:
And I think on friends most dear, with the bitter, bitter tear,
And alas! I am weary, weary O:

Some additional links courtesy my friend Dale Hu:

Address to the Haggis   (good vid)


from a real Scot

The Haggis Rabbie Burns


Address to a Haggis   (with valley girl commentary)

Address to a Haggis   (with Subtitles)

Ode to a Haggis  (hq)

with Translation and Meaning


Making o’ the Haggis

Some Haggis Ingredients


(Subtitled) Obama is Scottish – a version for our English and overseas friends!


also enjoyed this Rant about how the Gypsies are treated

All the Very Best to The Gypsies in England against the Scaldies/Hornies



About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


7 Responses to “Happy Robert Burns Day! Rabbie Burns: Scotland’s great Romantic Poet.”

  1. Dear Friends of Robert Burns,

    Here’s a link my blogpost on Robert Burns:


    And below are links to BBC recordings of Burns’ work, sent to me by an old Scottish friend:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/robertburns/works/a_mans_a_man_for_a_that/ (This poem reflects the Scottish no-big-deal approach. I like it a lot. It’s read by Brian Cox, a famous Scottish character actor.)



  2. Robert Burns:

    Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
    And never brought to min’?
    Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
    And days o’ lang syne?

    For auld lang syne, my dear,
    For auld lang syne,
    We’ll tak a cup o’kindess yet,
    For auld lang syne.

  3. […] the world, January 25th is celebrated as Robert Burns Day. The anniversary of the birth of Scotland’s most famous poet is traditionally commemorated by […]