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Category: Funny Satire Poems
       Classic humorous and funny poems using irony, exaggeration and ridicule, to expose and criticize stupidity and vices.

  HOLY WILLIE'S PRAYER  

O thou wha in the heavens dost dwell,
Wha, as it pleases best Thysel,
Sends ane to Heaven, an' ten to Hell,
                    A' for Thy glory,
And no for onie guid or ill
                    They've done before Thee!

I bless and praise Thy matchless might,
When thousands Thou hast left in night,
That I am here, before Thy sight,
                    For gifts an' grace,
A burnin' an' a shinin' light
                    To a' this place.

What was I, or my generation,
That I should get sic exaltation!
I, wha deserv'd most just damnation,
                    For broken laws
Sax thousand years ere my creation,
                    Thro' Adam's cause.

When frae my mither's womb I fell,
Thou might hae plung'd me deep in Hell,
To gnash my gooms, to weep and wail
                    In burnin' lakes,
Whare damnËd devils roar and yell,
                    Chain'd to their stakes.

Yet I am here, a chosen sample,
To show Thy grace is great and ample;
I'm here a pillar o' Thy temple,
                    Strong as a rock,
A guide, a buckler, an example
                    To a' Thy flock!

But yet, O Lord! confess I must,
At times I'm fash'd wi' fleshly lust;
An' sometimes, too, in warldly trust,
                    Vile self gets in;
But Thou remembers we are dust,
                    Defil'd wi' sin.

May be Thou lets this fleshly thorn
Beset Thy servant e'en and morn,
Lest he owre proud and high should turn
                    That he's sae gifted:
If sae, Thy han' maun e'en be borne
                    Until Thou lift it.

Lord, bless Thy chosen in this place,
For here Thou has a chosen race:
But God confound their stubborn face,
                    An' blast their name,
Wha bring Thy elders to disgrace
                    An' open shame!

Lord, mind Gawn Hamilton's deserts,
He drinks, an' swears, an' plays at cartes,
Yet has sae monie takin' arts,
                    Wi' great and sma',
Frae God's ain priest the people's hearts
                    He steals awa.

An' when we chasten'd him therefore,
Thou kens how he bred sic a splore,
As set the warld in a roar
                    O' laughin' at us;--
Curse Thou his basket and his store,
                    Kail an' potatoes!

Lord, hear my earnest cry and pray'r
Against the Presbyt'ry of Ayr!
Thy strong right hand, Lord, mak it bare
                    Upo' their heads!
Lord, visit them, an' dinna spare,
                    For their misdeeds!

O Lord, my God! that glib-tongu'd Aiken,
My vera heart and saul are quakin'
To think how we stood sweatin', shakin',
                    An' pish'd wi' dread,
While he wi' hingin' lip an' snakin',
                    Held up his head.

Lord, in Thy day o' vengeance try him!
Lord, visit them wha did employ him,
And pass not in Thy mercy by them,
                    Nor hear their pray'r;
But for Thy people's sake destroy them,
                    An' dinna spare!

But, Lord, remember me and mine,
Wi' mercies temp'ral and divine,
That I for grace and gear may shine,
                    Excell'd by nane,
An' a' the glory shall be Thine,
                    Amen, Amen!

                                 Robert Burns.


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