Fair Kilwaughter

The bounteous hand of Nature opened wide,
And scattered o'er a smiling countryside
A thousand little fields of beauty rare,
With sparkling burns and streamlets here and there.
Rippling and chattering gaily on their way
Through sunlit woods and glens and meadows gay.

The giant trees look down with gentle grace,
To greet the wild flower's upturned smiling face.
The leverock's music fills the perfumed air,
Contentment, peace and beauty everywhere.
No artist's pen, no poet's muse can flatter
The lovely countryside of fair Kilwaughter.

This pleasant Eden nurtures rugged sons,
And through their veins the blood of freedom runs,
Their tranquil lives flow fearless as the tide,
Unscathed by poverty or vulgar pride.
They own no wayward passions to subdue,
Their joys are simple, their obsessions few.

Fair are the daughters of this fair domain,
Their beauty fresh and cool as summer rain.
The bloom of Nature rests on every cheek,
No music charms the ear whene'er they speak.
No sculptured Venus ever could surpass
The beauty of a sweet Kilwaughter lass.

These sturdy folk bear history in their names:
The Rockes, the Johnstons and the Mcllwaines.
A famous 'Nelson' at Trafalgar bled,
A mighty 'Wallace' Scotia's armies led.
The Ogilvies, the Gilberts and the Wharrys,
All solid in their native limestone quarries.

Secure and steady as the neighbouring hills,
You'll find McFauls, Caldwells, Magees, Magills;
Reays, Boyds and Whites. The Beggs and Wilsons too,
Where lovely Lealies charms the eye anew.
And others whom my humble pen could flatter,
Bred on the homely soil of fair Kilwaughter.

Fondly I hope I may return some day,
To idly dander down the Red Rock Brae,
And hear the blackbird warble loud and shrill
Beside the peaceful dam at Horner's mill.
Perhaps I'll stroll around the lake and laze
And hark my memory back to youthful days.

I'll think of all the joyous carefree years,
I'll think of whispered words and lovers' tears.
Recall the voice of many a youthful chum,
Recall the thunder of an Orange drum.
Such pleasant daydreams time can never shatter,
Once you've lived and loved in fair Kilwaughter.

John Clifford (1964)

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John Clifford
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