The Two Old Nags


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english translation

The Two Old Nags

       “The Twa Cummeris”

Early one Ash Wednesday dawn,
Two gossips sat, guzzling wine.
Leaning a hand on her corpulent knee,
Groaning and . . .
. . . . . . . . . .


original Scots poem

The Twa Cummeris

Rycht airlie on Ask Weddinsday,
Drynkand the wyne satt cumeris tway;
The tane cowth to the tother complene,
Graneand and suppand cowd scho say,
“This lang Lentern makis me lene.”

On cowch besyd the fyre scho satt,
God wait gif scho wes grit and fatt,
Yit to be feble scho did hir fene,
And ay scho said, “Latt preif of that,
This lang Lentern makis me lene.”

“My fair, sweit cummer,” quod the tuder,
“Ye tak that nigertnes of your muder;
All wyne to test scho wald disdane
Bot mavasy, scho bad nane uder;
This lang Lentern makis me lene.”

“Cummer, be glaid both evin and morrow,
Thocht ye suld bayth beg and borrow,
Fra our lang fasting ye yow refrene,
And latt your husband dre the sorrow;
This lang Lentern makis me lene.”

“Your counsale, cummer, is gud,” quod scho,
“All is to tene him that I do,
In bed he is nocht wirth a bene;
Fill fow the glass and drynk me to;
This lang Lentern makis me lene.”

Off wyne owt of ane choppyne stowp,
They drank twa quartis, sowp and sowp,
Off drowth sic exces did thame strene;
Be than to mend thay had gud howp
That Lentrune suld nocht mak thame lene.