Robert Burns

No Churchman am I

written in 1782

No churchman am I for to rail and to write, No Statesman nor Soldier to plot or to fight, No sly Man of business contriving a snare, For a big-belly'd bottle's the whole of my care. The Peer I don't envy, I give him his bow; I scorn not the Peasant, tho' ever so low; But a club of good fellows, like those that are here, And a bottle like this, are my glory and care. Here passes the Squire on his brother - his horse; There Centum per Centum, the Cit with his purse; But see you the Crown how it waves in the air, There a big-belly'd bottle still eases my care. The wife of my bosom, alas! she did die; For sweet consolation to church I did fly; I found that old Solomon proved it fair, That a big-belly'd bottle's a cure for all care. I once was persuaded a venture to make; A letter inform'd me that all was to wreck; But the pursy old landlord just waddl'd up stairs, With a glorious bottle that ended my cares. 'Life's cares they are comforts' - a maxim laid down By the Bard, what d'ye call him, that wore the black gown; And faith I agree with th' old prig to a hair; For a big-belly'd bottle's a heav'n of care. Then fill up a bumper and make it o'erflow, And honours masonic prepare for to throw; May ev'ry true Brother of th' Compass and Square Have a big-belly'd bottle when harass'd with care.

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