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Lament for the Makaris

William Dunbar
I that in heill was and gladness
Am trublit now with great sickness
And feblit with infirmitie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me.

Our plesance here is all vain glory,
This fals world is but transitory,
The flesh is bruckle, the Feynd is slee:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

The state of man does change and vary,
Now sound. now sick, now blyth, now sary,
Now dansand mirry, now like to die:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me.
 
No state in Erd here standis sicker;
As with the wynd wavis the wicker
So wannis this world's vanitie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Unto the Death gods all Estatis,
Princis, Prelattis, and Potestatis,
Baith rich and poor of all degree:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He takis the knichtis in to the field
Enarmit under helm and scheild;
Victor he is at all mellie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

That strong unmerciful tyrand
Takis, on the motheris breast sowkand,
The babe full of benignitie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He takis the campion in the stour,
The captain closit in the tour,
The lady in bour full of bewtie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He spairis no lord for his piscence
Na clerk for his intelligence;
His awful straik may no man flee.
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Art-magicianis and astrologic,
Rethoris, logicianis, and theologis,
Them helpis no conclusionis slee:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

In medecine the most practicianis,
Leechis, surrigianis and physicianis,
Themself from Death may nocht supplee:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

I see that makaris amang the lave
Playis is here their padyanis, syne gods to grave;
Sparit is nocht their facultie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has done petuously devour
The noble Chaucer, of makaris flour,
The Monk of Bury, and Gower, all three:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

The good Sir Hew of Eglintoun,
Ettrick, Heriot, and Wintoun,
He has tane out of this cuntrie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

That scorpion fell has done infeck
Maister John Clerk, and James Afflek,
Fra ballat-making and tragedie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Holland and Barbour he has berevit ;
Alas! that he not with us levit
Sir Mungo Lockart of the Lee:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Clerk of Tranent eke he has tane,
That made the aventeris of Gawaine;
Sir Gilbert Hay endit has he:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has Blind Harry and Sandy Traill
Slain with his schour of mortal hail,
Quhilk Patrick Johnstoun might nocht flee:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has reft Mersar his endite
That did in luve so lively write,
So short, so quick, of sentence hie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has tane Rowll of Aberdene,
And gentill Rowll of Cortorphine;
Two better fallowis did no man see:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

In Dunfermline he has tane Broun
With Maister Robert Henrysoun;
Sir John the Ross enbrasit has he:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

And he has now sane, last of a,
Good gentil Stobo and Quintin Shaw.
Of quhom all wichtis hes pitie:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Good Maister Walter Kennedy
In point of Dedth lies verily;
Great ruth it were that so suld be:
Timor Mortis conturbat me 

Sen he has all my brothers sane,
He will nocht let me live alane;
Of force I mon his next prey be:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Since for the Death remeid is none,
Best is that we for Death dispone
After our death that live may we:
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

ca 1460 - ca 1525

ca 1460 - ca 1525

William Dunbar