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O wise and valiant Willy

Language: English

O wise and valiant Willy,
  Would ye but grip the helm!
My blessings on the day
  Ye rose to guide the realm.
The winds blew hard on Willy,
  And loudly roar'd the sea,
When a' the rest look'd silly,
  Like Ailsa rock was he.

O doure hard-working Willy,
  How sair he won his fee ! 
He spent it aye as he got it,
  And now he has naething to gi'e.
O doure lang-headed Willy,
  When he began to crack, 
He held to his point ay steady,
  And never a foot gaed back.

O doure and stalwart Willy,
  He's gane to ca' his plough,
But ere the play be play'd
  He'll get some mair ado
There's nought in Will's kail-yard,
  But ae bit laurel tree;
Yet doure and stalwart Willy
  Is welcome ay to me.

His daddy gied him his name,
  'Twas a' that he could gi'e,
Its kent his daddy's coat
  There's nane could fill but he.
O bold and reckless Willy,
  Nane bides a blast like thee,
In rough and blustering weather
  Ye're welcome ay to me.

J. Haydn sets stanzas 1, 3-4

About the headline (FAQ)

Ailsa rock = Ailsa Craig, an island off the west coast of Ayrshire, famous for its granite, from which curling stones are made;
doure = sullen;
ca' = drive;
kail-yard = Cottager's garden;
kent = known

Submitted by Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Text added to the website: 2008-06-08.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:44
Line count: 32
Word count: 178

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