Henry's Songbook

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The Buchan Turnpike

  • Trad

    In the year o' eighteen hundred and eight
    A road through Buchan was made straight
    And mony's a hieland lad o' might
    Came o'er the Buchan border

    Frae Peterhead to Banff's auld toon
    It twines the knowes and hollows roon' (knowes - hillocks)
    Ye scarce can tell its ups frae doons
    It's levelled in sic order

    And the hieland and the lowland chiels (chiels - fellows)
    Cut doon the knowes wi' spads and shi (shiels - shovels)
    Bored the stanes wi' jumpin'-dreels
    Tae put the road in order

    There was some in tartan, some in blue
    Wi' weskits o' a warlike hue
    And werena they a strappin' crew
    Tae put the road in order

    And mony's a hup and mony's a bang
    Got cartin' horse and lazy man
    Fu' and teem and aye they ran (teem - energetically)
    To put it a bittie further

    Chiel Chalmers, he frae Strichen cam'
    Wi' ae black horse as bold as a ram
    Nae ane could match him in the tram (tram - cart-shafts)
    He made a braw recorder

    And the Meerisons, the Wichts and Giels
    Were swack and willin' workin' chiels (swack - clever, nimble)
    Sae fu' as they pu'd the barra steels (barra steels - barrow handles)
    Tae put the road in order

    The road's as smooth as a harrow'd rig
    Wi' stankies on ilk side fu' trig (stankies - drains)
    And ilk' bit burn has noo a brig (bit - tiny)
    Where aince we had to ford her

    And this turnpike it will be a boon
    Tae a' the country roon' and roon'
    And let folk come and gae frae toon
    Wi' easedom and wi' order

    On fit you're o'er it free to stray
    But if a beast ye chance tae hae
    At ilka sax miles ye maun pay
    For gaun a bittie further

    Repeat 1

    As sung by Tony Cuffe

Susannes Folksong-Notizen

  • [1908:] "The making of a turnpike road, however important an event in its own way, hardly looks a subject for verse, and nowadays one could scarcely imagine a bard condescending on such a prosaic theme. It must be remembered however, that long ago the ballad was the only vehicle available for historical record, and the song before us simply illustrates the survival of this practice of keeping up the memory of notable events by making a rhyme about it and getting it sung." (Gavin Greig, quoted in Notes Tony Cuffe, 'When First I Went To Caledonia')

Quelle: Scotland

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© Sammlung : Susanne Kalweit (Kiel)
Layout : Henry Kochlin (D-21435 Stelle)

aktualisiert am 02.04.2010, 08.09.99