I love this scene from What Katy Did at School by Susan Coolidge, and tonight seems the right time to air it. The SSUC - or Society for the Suppression of Unladylike Conduct - is having one of its high-minded Saturday afternoons, the members reading their own works to one another. It's the turn of Katy & Clover's best friend, the irrepressible Rose Red:
A SCOTCH POEM.
Wee, crimson-tippet Willie Wink,
Wae's me, drear, dree, and dra,
A waeful thocht, a fearsome flea,
A wuther wind, and a'.
Sair, sair thy mither sabs her lane,
Her een, her mou, are wat;
Her cauld kail hae the corbies ta'en,
And grievously she grat.
Ah, me, the suthering of the wind!
Ah, me, the waesom mither!
Ah, me, the bairnies left ahind,
The shither, hither, blither!
"What does it mean?" cried the girls, as Rose folded up the paper and sat down. "Mean?" said Rose, "I'm sure I don't know. It's Scotch, I tell you! It's the kind of thing that people read, and then they say, 'One of the loveliest gems that Burns ever wrote!' I thought I'd see if I couldn't do one too. Anybody can, I find: it's not at all difficult."