Take a few homeschool minutes to remember (and listen to) the great Scottish poet Robert Burns, born on this day in 1759.
Robert Burns (1759–1796) is the much-loved national poet of Scotland, and his poems and songs have been read and sung around the world for more than 200 years. What better day to introduce him to your homeschool students than January 25th, the day of his birth in 1759.
Many of Burns’ poems are written in the Scottish dialect of English — sometimes a bit difficult for beginners — but with a little practice and thought (and with occasional help from a good dictionary) their structure and imagery are easily understood. His famous poem of the departing lover who promises to return, “A Red, Red Rose,” is a fine place for any young poetry student to begin.
A Red, Red Rose
O my Luve is like a red, red rose
That’s newly sprung in June;
O my Luve is like the melody
That’s sweetly played in tune.
So fair art thou, my bonnie lass,
So deep in luve am I;
And I will luve thee still, my dear,
Till a’ the seas gang dry.
Till a’ the seas gang dry, my dear,
And the rocks melt wi’ the sun;
I will love thee still, my dear,
While the sands o’ life shall run.
And fare thee weel, my only luve!
And fare thee weel awhile!
And I will come again, my luve,
Though it were ten thousand mile.
But “A Red, Red Rose” isn’t just a poem, it’s a song, and this fine version by the Scottish-Canadian singer John McDermott may help your students understand and appreciate it even better:
Happy birthday, Robbie — may your songs be remembered till all the seas gang dry!