Janet Hamilton

1795-1873 / Scotland

The Angel's Treasure

There stude a wee house on a lanely muirside,
Whaur mony lang years a puir widow did bide-
A decent, douce bodie, ne'er kenn'd to complain,
Or mak' a puir mouth to a neebor or frien'.
Her four bits o' bairns could dae neathing ava,
An' sae their puir leevin' was scanty an' sma';
Their cleedin' was bare, an' nae shoon on their feet,
An' whiles the puir things hadna muckle to eat.
In simmer an' hairst she wad toil in the fiel';
Content if her bairnies had bread an' a biel';
In winter aye spinnin', sae eident an' thrang,
An' to cheer them at times wad lilt a bit sang.
Ae winter, puir bodie! in straits she had been,
An' was plying her wheel on a Saturday e'en;
Her hasp maun be spun, an' sauld to get meat,
Or on Monday the bairns wad hae naething to eat.
Sair bent on the spinnin', she heard nae the chime
O' the wag-at-the-wa' whan ringin' the time,
At twa in the mornin'-O horror an' wae!
To think she had broken the blest Sabbath-day!
Alane she sat mournin' her sinfu' mishap,
There cam' on the winnock a gentle tap-tap,
An' a gentle voice said, 'Puir carcase o' clay!
O, why hast thou broken the Lord's blessed day?
'But dinna be frichten'd; come oot, follow me,
I'll lead you to something that's gi'en unto thee;'
An' she thocht that saft voice can come frae nae ill-
It speaks for the Sabbath, sae follow I will.
She open'd the door, an' saw doun by the dyke
A something, but kenn'd nae weel what it was like;
She follow'd the shape, an' had nae fear ava,
Till close at the side o' an aul' ruin'd wa'-
Wi' ivy an' brambles, maist hidden frae sicht,
Were the crum'lin' stanes, but she saw by the licht
O' the mune that a stane was drawn oot o' the wa'-
Her heart gied a loup at the neist thing she saw.
There fell oot a pig fu' o' siller an' gowd;
'Tak' it up,' said the shape, 'on thee it's bestow'd;
That treasure was hidden, lang ages agane,
In that moulderin' wa', an noo its thine ain.
'Thy trust was in God an' thine ain willin' arm;
Still trust in His gudeness, He'll shield thee frae harm
The stay o' the widow an' orphan is He;
Fareweel, I nae longer may tarry wi' thee.'
She liftit her een, but the shape it was gane;
She hearken'd, but hearin' or voice there was nane;
She leuk'd to the sky, wi' a tear in her e'e,
'Gude Lord! has Thy angel been watchin' owre me?
'For this Thou has gi'en me, Thy name I will praise;
My bairns will get schulin', be fed, an' get claes;
An', as lang as I leeve, fu' brawly we'll fen'.
Wha trusts Thee in need, sall be blest in the en'.'
82 Total read