Robert Burns poetry — Sonnet On Hearing a Thrush Sing… January… Author’s Birthday


Well here is a poem by Robert Burns. It’s
a poem that I found in an old collection of Robert Burns poetical
works. This book doesn’t even have a date on it. It was published in New York
probably in the 19th century. It’s all falling apart. It’s got a handsome
leather cover with some cool book designs, graphics on it. In any case
yesterday on January 1st 2019 I had this book out because the night before we had
been singing good old “auld lang syne,” Burns’ probably most famous song and
poem. And that got me looking at some of the other stuff. I went with Charity to
lunch and we brought the Burns along with us and read some poems. So I found this poem entitled “on hearing a thrush sing on a morning walk in January.” It
seemed to be a good fit for a January poem. Honestly I’ve never heard a
thrush sing in January. In America, a thrush is a bird that’s what you call a
neotropical migrant. It goes to South America for the winter, so Scottish
thrushes must be something different. But I’m guessing that, like the American thrush, they have a beautiful song. In any case, I found the poem yesterday. I just came across it in this 300 page volume of Burns, poetical works but now I
can’t find it in the book so I’m actually reading this off the internet. Also of course Burns writes in the
Scottish dialect which I’m not even going to attempt to reproduce. But I
think this is a good January song, entitled “on hearing a thrush sing on a
morning walk in January”: Sing on sweet Thrush upon the leafless bough sing on
sweet bird I’ll listen to thy strain see agent winter mid his surly reign a thigh
blithe Carol clears his furrowed brow thus and Bleak poverty’s Dominion drear
sits meek content with light an anxious heart welcomes the rapid moments bids
them part nor asks if they bring aught to hope or fear
I thank the author of this opening day thou whose bright Sun now guilds yon
Orientis Kies riches denied the boon was pure Joyce what wealth could never give
nor take away but come thou child of poverty and care the mite high heaven
bestowed that might with thee I’ll share. Oh and that’s a sonnet, too. Maybe the
reason I can’t find it in the book is because it’s entitled “sonnet.” A sonnet by
Robert Burns — again “on hearing a thrush sing on a morning walk in January.” This has been Kevin O’Donnell reading
you this poem. In case you find, it there it is. And I hope everyone listening to
this enjoys 2019 with a light, unanxious heart, and ought to hope or fear.

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