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Highland Lassie

Isaiah Zerbst Avatar Isaiah Zerbst - Premium MemberPremium Member Send Soup Mail Go to Poets Blog Block poet from commenting on your poetry

Below is the poem entitled Highland Lassie which was written by poet Isaiah Zerbst. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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Highland Lassie

Highland Lassie - There Can Only Be One

Inspired by the painting "Highland Lassie" (1871) by Thomas Faed.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings/paintings/highland-lassie-90027 

(Verse One; In introduction to Cailin)
Walkin' on the highways, searchin' down the byways,
Tromps a lonely figure on the Highland roads;
Peerin' from the Highdown, breezin' through the lake town,
Askin' of a question erry where he goes:
(Chorus; Cailin, followed by some villagefolk)
And it's, "Marry, gather 'round! for she hasna' yet been found;
I come lookin' for the truest lass, as only one can be:
I've a letter do deliver; as you see, it says to give 'er
To the fairest Highland lassie from Loch Leven to the sea."
"Here's a lass," they proudly say, "fair as June and sweet as May,
And it's sure that she's the fairest in the Highland mountains steep:
Through the heather you may go, climb the mountains capped with snow,
But you'll never find a better lass on which your eyes to peep."

(Verse Two; Cailin's thoughts)
Some of them were pouty, others even dowdy;
"These," he thought, "would never do in fifteen years:
Beauty on the outside, nothin' on the inside,
Leaves a girl with nothin' when it fades to tears."
(Chorus; Cailin's continuing journey)
Trav'lin' all around, for she hasna' yet been found;
He's come lookin' for the truest lass, as only one can be:
With a letter do deliver; as you see, it says to give 'er
To the fairest Highland lassie from Loch Leven to the sea." 
"Here's a lass," they proudly say, "fair as June and sweet as May,"
But you canna' tell the fairest one except you see them all:
And the lassies sweetly smile, for this stranger to beguile,
As 'e treads throughout the Highlands from the winter to the fall.

(Verse Three; Cailin's travels and troubles)
From the banks of Lomon', up to Durness roamin',
How's a wight to judge betwixt a thousand score?
Steps were waxing weary, days were growing dreary,
'Till 'e saw a lass 'e hadna' met before.
(Chorus; Cailin, to a lass called Ellsie and her villagefolk)
And it's, "Marry, gather 'round, for the lassie here is found!
I 'ave searched and found the truest lass, as only one can be:
Here the letter I deliver; as you see, it says to give 'er
To the fairest Highland lassie from Loch Leven to the sea. 
"Here's a lass," I proudly say, "fair as June and sweet as May,
And it's sure that she's the fairest in the Highland mountains steep:
Through the heather you may go, climb the mountains capped with snow,
But you'll never find a better lass on which your eyes to peep."

(Verse Four; Ellsie's villagefolk reply in confusion)
Then they said, "Oh, please, Sir, don't you taunt and tease 'er,
Caint you tell she's plainer e'en than Skye down dell?
Caint you tell you've pained 'er? don't do that again, Sir,
Lest you 'ave a reason, and if so, pray tell."
(Chorus; Cailin's reply, followed by Ellsie reading the letter)
"O'er the braes an' through the moor, I 'ave trode my walkers sore,
All to find the truest lassie in the Highlands boggy peat;
And the truest lass is fair, for the true shall never wear,
So I say that here's the truest, fairest lass I've chanced to meet."
Then she opened up the scroll, and she read it to the full,
And for those who chance to wonder, I shall quote you what she read:
"When the fairest lass I find, if our wishes are aligned,
I should wish to know thee better, lass, and then, perhaps, to wed."

(Verse Five; Ellsie's reply to the letter)
Then she said, "Oh, come, Sir; don't be sad or glum, Sir;
Meet my father, mother, and my sisters small:
Soon the bells were ringin', people gladly singin'
"Here's the lad who worked to find the best of all."
(Chorus, which Ellsie's villagefolk sing at the wedding)
"O'er the braes an' through the moor, 'e 'as trode 'is walkers sore,
All to find the truest lassie in the Highlands boggy peat;
And the truest lass is fair, for the true shall never wear,
So I say that here's the truest, fairest lass I've chanced to meet. 
"Here's a lass," we proudly say, "fair as June and sweet as May,
And it's sure that she's the fairest in the Highland mountains steep:
Through the heather you may go, climb the mountains capped with snow,
But you'll never find a better lass on which your eyes to peep."



Note: the verses are written using trochaic feet, meaning that they begin with a stressed syllable, followed by an unstressed, and so on repeatedly. The fifth foot (syllables nine and ten) in the second and fourth lines of the verses is a spondee, meaning two stressed syllables in one foot. I mention this for ease in correct reading. An example of this same device is "Since the Savior Found Me" by Edgar J. Haskins, (in last line of verses and refrain).

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  1. Date: 9/10/2013 3:21:00 PM
    I really enjoyed reading this entertaining story! You must have put a lot of work into this one! This poem put me right in the middle of Scotland, which is a place that I have always wanted to see someday...Wonderful work!...Thank you so much for the kind and encouraging comments. I really appreciate them!

  1. Date: 8/9/2013 8:01:00 PM
    Hi Isaiah, love the poem... enjoyed every entry on the winning list... congratulations in "The Highlander contest" ~ SKAT

  1. Date: 8/8/2013 10:17:00 PM
    Isaiah, . CONGRATULATIONS!!! ---- in Nathan's "There can be only one" contest... xox...Linda

  1. Date: 7/18/2013 10:50:00 PM
    Isaiah, , Anne, has nice taste ..... congrats with your Song Lyrics entry... love~ SKAT

  1. Date: 7/18/2013 7:02:00 AM
    Isaiah, thank you so much for your comments yesterday. They brought a huge smile to my face. I had to comment on this one again, since you mentioned the heather. I am so honoured! :)

  1. Date: 7/16/2013 10:26:00 PM
    congrats on this winner. Russell

  1. Date: 7/15/2013 10:04:00 PM
    Isaiah, you never cease to amaze me with your talent! Outstanding piece! Congrats on your win! Love, Kim

  1. Date: 7/15/2013 3:48:00 PM
    You hsve a deserving winning somg dear friend..Its lovely and going to my favs

  1. Date: 7/15/2013 10:45:00 AM
    I don't even know what to say! You just keep getting better and better. This is honestly a work of art. A ton of effort must have gone into this one, but it seems effortless. BIG congratulations, my friend! (And a big thank you for your kind comments!)

  1. Date: 7/15/2013 9:51:00 AM
    Isaiah a fabulous Lyric you have written. Congrats on your excellent win. Warm Smiles, Connie

  1. Date: 7/14/2013 6:42:00 PM
    Isaiah - I simply don't know what to say here...This is as good or better than anything I have read here on the Soup...Brilliant sir - Tim

  1. Date: 7/14/2013 5:47:00 PM
    enjoyed your winning poem, in the lyric poem contest.... always *LINDA

  1. Date: 7/14/2013 8:05:00 AM
    An epic piece, congratulations

  1. Date: 7/14/2013 7:36:00 AM
    Wow Isaiah....have you recorded it yet? Awesome ..congratulations

  1. Date: 7/13/2013 11:59:00 PM
    My gosh, so much work put into this one, Isaiah. BIG congrats on your very well deserved win.

  1. Date: 7/13/2013 8:10:00 PM
    Well, well, well! I should have known this outstanding entry was that of yours! These lyrics are AMAZING! Exactly what I was wanting to see entered into my contest, well done! Thank you so much for participating and congrats on your second place win! :)