379. Song—fragment—love For Love

ITHERS seek they ken na what,
Features, carriage, and a' that;
Gie me love in her I court,
Love to love maks a' the sport.


Let love sparkle in her e'e;
Let her lo'e nae man but me;
That's the tocher-gude I prize,
There the luver's treasure lies.

A Grace After Dinner

O THOU, in whom we live and move—
Who made the sea and shore;
Thy goodness constantly we prove,
And grateful would adore;
And, if it please Thee, Power above!
Still grant us, with such store,
The friend we trust, the fair we love—
And we desire no more. Amen!

A Grace After Dinner

O THOU, in whom we live and move—
Who made the sea and shore;
Thy goodness constantly we prove,
And grateful would adore;
And, if it please Thee, Power above!
Still grant us, with such store,
The friend we trust, the fair we love—
And we desire no more. Amen!

Song—down The Burn, Davie Love

AS down the burn they took their way,
And thro' the flowery dale;
His cheek to hers he aft did lay,
And love was aye the tale:


With "Mary, when shall we return,
Sic pleasure to renew?"
Quoth Mary—"Love, I like the burn,
And aye shall follow you."

I Love My Love In Secret

MY Sandy gied to me a ring,
Was a' beset wi' diamonds fine;
But I gied him a far better thing,
I gied my heart in pledge o' his ring.


Chorus.—My Sandy O, my Sandy O,
My bonie, bonie Sandy O;
Tho' the love that I owe
To thee I dare na show,
Yet I love my love in secret, my Sandy O.


My Sandy brak a piece o' gowd,
While down his cheeks the saut tears row'd;
He took a hauf, and gied it to me,
And I'll keep it till the hour I die.
My Sand O, &c.

Inconstancy In Love

LET not Woman e'er complain
Of inconstancy in love;
Let not Woman e'er complain
Fickle Man is apt to rove:
Look abroad thro' Nature's range,
Nature's mighty Law is change,
Ladies, would it not seem strange
Man should then a monster prove!


Mark the winds, and mark the skies,
Ocean's ebb, and ocean's flow,
Sun and moon but set to rise,
Round and round the seasons go.
Why then ask of silly Man
To oppose great Nature's plan?
We'll be constant while we can—
You can be no more, you know.

Frae The Friends And Land I Love

FRAE the friends and land I love,
Driv'n by Fortune's felly spite;
Frae my best belov'd I rove,
Never mair to taste delight:
Never mair maun hope to find
Ease frae toil, relief frae care;
When Remembrance wracks the mind,
Pleasures but unveil despair.


Brightest climes shall mirk appear,
Desert ilka blooming shore,
Till the Fates, nae mair severe,
Friendship, love, and peace restore,
Till Revenge, wi' laurel'd head,
Bring our banished hame again;
And ilk loyal, bonie lad
Cross the seas, and win his ain.

Love In The Guise Of Friendship

Talk not of love, it gives me pain,
For love has been my foe;
He bound me in an iron chain,
And plung'd me deep in woe.

But friendship's pure and lasting joys,
My heart was form'd to prove;
There, welcome win and wear the prize,
But never talk of love.

Your friendship much can make me blest,
O why that bliss destroy?
Why urge the only, one request
You know I will deny?

Your thought, if Love must harbour there,
Conceal it in that thought;
Nor cause me from my bosom tear
The very friend I sought.

Song—o Were My Love You Lilac Fair

O WERE my love yon Lilac fair,
Wi' purple blossoms to the Spring,
And I, a bird to shelter there,
When wearied on my little wing!
How I wad mourn when it was torn
By Autumn wild, and Winter rude!
But I wad sing on wanton wing,
When youthfu' May its bloom renew'd.


O gin my love were yon red rose,
That grows upon the castle wa';
And I myself a drap o' dew,
Into her bonie breast to fa'!
O there, beyond expression blest,
I'd feast on beauty a' the night;
Seal'd on her silk-saft faulds to rest,
Till fley'd awa by Phoebus' light!

O, Were My Love

O, were my love yon lilac fair
Wi' purple blossoms to the spring,
And I a bird to shelter there,
When wearied on my little wing.
How I wad mourn when it was torn
By Autumn wild and Winter rude!
But I wad sing on wanton wing
When youthfu May its bloom renew'd.

O, gin my love were yon red rose,
That grows upon the castle wa',
And I mysel a drap o' dew
Into her bonie breast to fa',
O, there, beyond expression blest,
I'd feast on beauty a' the night,
Seal'd on her silk-saft faulds to rest,
Till fley'd awa by Phoebus' light!

My Love, She's But A Lassie Yet

My love, she's but a lassie yet,
My love, she's but a lassie yet!
We'll let her stand a year or twa,
She'll no be half sae saucy yet!

I rue the day I sought her, O!
I rue the day I sought her, O!
Wha gets her need na say he's woo'd,
But he may say he has bought her, O.

Come draw a drap o' the best o't yet,
Come draw a drap o' the best o't yet!
Gae seek for pleasure whare ye will,
But here I never miss'd it yet.

We're a'dry wi' drinkin o't,
We're a'dry wi' drinkin o't!
The minister kiss't the fiddler's wife-
He could na preach for thinkin o't!

Masonic Song—ye Sons Of Old Killie

YE sons of old Killie, assembled by Willie,
To follow the noble vocation;
Your thrifty old mother has scarce such another
To sit in that honoured station.
I've little to say, but only to pray,
As praying's the ton of your fashion;
A prayer from thee Muse you well may excuse
'Tis seldom her favourite passion.


Ye powers who preside o'er the wind, and the tide,
Who markèd each element's border;
Who formed this frame with beneficent aim,
Whose sovereign statute is order:—
Within this dear mansion, may wayward Contention
Or witherèd Envy ne'er enter;
May secrecy round be the mystical bound,
And brotherly Love be the centre!

O Were My Love Yon Lilac Fair

O WERE my Love yon lilac fair,
   Wi' purple blossoms to the spring,
And I a bird to shelter there,
   When wearied on my little wing;
How I wad mourn when it was torn
   By autumn wild and winter rude!
But I wad sing on wanton wing
   When youthfu' May its bloom renew'd.

O gin my Love were yon red rose
   That grows upon the castle wa',
And I mysel a drap o' dew,
   Into her bonnie breast to fa';
O there, beyond expression blest,
   I'd feast on beauty a' the night;
Seal'd on her silk-saft faulds to rest,
   Till fley'd awa' by Phoebus' light.

Forlorn, My Love, No Comfort Here

FORLORN, my Love, no comfort near,
Far, far from thee, I wander here;
Far, far from thee, the fate severe,
At which I most repine, Love.


Chorus.—O wert thou, Love, but near me!
But near, near, near me,
How kindly thou wouldst cheer me,
And mingle sighs with mine, Love.


Around me scowls a wintry sky,
Blasting each bud of hope and joy;
And shelter, shade, nor home have I;
Save in these arms of thine, Love.
O wert thou, &c.


Cold, alter'd friendship's cruel part,
To poison Fortune's ruthless dart—
Let me not break thy faithful heart,
And say that fate is mine, Love.
O wert thou, &c.


But, dreary tho' the moments fleet,
O let me think we yet shall meet;
That only ray of solace sweet,
Can on thy Chloris shine, Love!
O wert thou, &c.

Song—behold, My Love, How Green The Groves

BEHOLD, my love, how green the groves,
The primrose banks how fair;
The balmy gales awake the flowers,
And wave thy flowing hair.


The lav'rock shuns the palace gay,
And o'er the cottage sings:
For Nature smiles as sweet, I ween,
To Shepherds as to Kings.


Let minstrels sweep the skilfu' string,
In lordly lighted ha':
The Shepherd stops his simple reed,
Blythe in the birken shaw.


The Princely revel may survey
Our rustic dance wi' scorn;
But are their hearts as light as ours,
Beneath the milk-white thorn!


The shepherd, in the flowery glen;
In shepherd's phrase, will woo:
The courtier tells a finer tale,
But is his heart as true!


These wild-wood flowers I've pu'd, to deck
That spotless breast o' thine:
The courtiers' gems may witness love,
But, 'tis na love like mine.

Song—poortith Cauld And Restless Love

O POORTITH cauld, and restless love,
Ye wrack my peace between ye;
Yet poortith a' I could forgive,
An 'twere na for my Jeanie.


Chorus.—O why should Fate sic pleasure have,
Life's dearest bands untwining?
Or why sae sweet a flower as love
Depend on Fortune's shining?


The warld's wealth, when I think on,
It's pride and a' the lave o't;
O fie on silly coward man,
That he should be the slave o't!
O why, &c.


Her e'en, sae bonie blue, betray
How she repays my passion;
But prudence is her o'erword aye,
She talks o' rank and fashion.
O why, &c.


O wha can prudence think upon,
And sic a lassie by him?
O wha can prudence think upon,
And sae in love as I am?
O why, &c.


How blest the simple cotter's fate!
He woos his artless dearie;
The silly bogles, wealth and state,
Can never make him eerie,
O why, &c.

Sylvander To Clarinda

WHEN dear Clarinda, 1 matchless fair,
First struck Sylvander's raptur'd view,
He gaz'd, he listened to despair,
Alas! 'twas all he dared to do.


Love, from Clarinda's heavenly eyes,
Transfixed his bosom thro' and thro';
But still in Friendships' guarded guise,
For more the demon fear'd to do.


That heart, already more than lost,
The imp beleaguer'd all perdue;
For frowning Honour kept his post—
To meet that frown, he shrunk to do.


His pangs the Bard refused to own,
Tho' half he wish'd Clarinda knew;
But Anguish wrung the unweeting groan—
Who blames what frantic Pain must do?


That heart, where motley follies blend,
Was sternly still to Honour true:
To prove Clarinda's fondest friend,
Was what a lover sure might do.


The Muse his ready quill employed,
No nearer bliss he could pursue;
That bliss Clarinda cold deny'd—
"Send word by Charles how you do!"


The chill behest disarm'd his muse,
Till passion all impatient grew:
He wrote, and hinted for excuse,
'Twas, 'cause "he'd nothing else to do."


But by those hopes I have above!
And by those faults I dearly rue!
The deed, the boldest mark of love,
For thee that deed I dare uo do!


O could the Fates but name the price
Would bless me with your charms and you!
With frantic joy I'd pay it thrice,
If human art and power could do!


Then take, Clarinda, friendship's hand,
(Friendship, at least, I may avow;)
And lay no more your chill command,—
I'll write whatever I've to do.SYLVANDER.

A Poets's Welcome To His Love-Begotten Daughter

Thou's welcome, wean; mishanter fa' me,
If thoughts o' thee, or yet thy mammie,
Shall ever daunton me or awe me,
My sweet wee lady,
Or if I blush when thou shalt ca' me
Tyta or daddie.

Tho' now they ca' me fornicator,
An' tease my name in countra clatter,
The mair they talk, I'm kend the better,
E'en let them clash;
An auld wife's tongue's a feckless matter
To gie ane fash.

Welcome! my bonie, sweet, wee dochter,
Tho' ye come here a wee unsought for,
And tho' your comin' I hae fought for,
Baith kirk and queir;
Yet, by my faith, ye're no unwrought for,
That I shall swear!

Sweet fruit o' monie a merry dint,
My funny toil is no a' tint,
Tho' thou cam to the warl' asklent,
Which fools may scoff at;
In my last plack thy part's be in't
The better ha'f o't.

Tho' I should be the waur bestead,
Thou's be as braw and bienly clad,
And thy young years as nicely bred
Wi' education,
As onie brat o' wedlock's bed,
In a' thy station.

Wee image o' my bonie Betty,
As fatherly I kiss and daut thee,
As dear and near my heart I set thee
Wi' as gude will
As a' the priests had seen me get thee
That's out o' hell.

Lord grant that thou may aye inherit
Thy mither's person, grace, an' merit,
An' thy poor, worthless daddy's spirit,
Without his failins,
'Twill please me mair to see thee heir it,
Than stockit mailens.

For if thou be what I wad hae thee,
And tak the counsel I shall gie thee,
I'll never rue my trouble wi' thee -
The cost nor shame o't,
But be a loving father to thee,
And brag the name o't.

Epistle On J. Lapraik

WHILE briers an' woodbines budding green,
An' paitricks scraichin loud at e'en,
An' morning poussie whiddin seen,
Inspire my muse,
This freedom, in an unknown frien',
I pray excuse.


On Fasten-e'en we had a rockin,
To ca' the crack and weave our stockin;
And there was muckle fun and jokin,
Ye need na doubt;
At length we had a hearty yokin
At sang about.


There was ae sang, amang the rest,
Aboon them a' it pleas'd me best,
That some kind husband had addrest
To some sweet wife;
It thirl'd the heart-strings thro' the breast,
A' to the life.


I've scarce heard ought describ'd sae weel,
What gen'rous, manly bosoms feel;
Thought I "Can this be Pope, or Steele,
Or Beattie's wark?"
They tauld me 'twas an odd kind chiel
About Muirkirk.


It pat me fidgin-fain to hear't,
An' sae about him there I speir't;
Then a' that kent him round declar'd
He had ingine;
That nane excell'd it, few cam near't,
It was sae fine:


That, set him to a pint of ale,
An' either douce or merry tale,
Or rhymes an' sangs he'd made himsel,
Or witty catches—
'Tween Inverness an' Teviotdale,
He had few matches.


Then up I gat, an' swoor an aith,
Tho' I should pawn my pleugh an' graith,
Or die a cadger pownie's death,
At some dyke-back,
A pint an' gill I'd gie them baith,
To hear your crack.


But, first an' foremost, I should tell,
Amaist as soon as I could spell,
I to the crambo-jingle fell;
Tho' rude an' rough—
Yet crooning to a body's sel'
Does weel eneugh.


I am nae poet, in a sense;
But just a rhymer like by chance,
An' hae to learning nae pretence;
Yet, what the matter?
Whene'er my muse does on me glance,
I jingle at her.


Your critic-folk may cock their nose,
And say, "How can you e'er propose,
You wha ken hardly verse frae prose,
To mak a sang?"
But, by your leaves, my learned foes,
Ye're maybe wrang.


What's a' your jargon o' your schools—
Your Latin names for horns an' stools?
If honest Nature made you fools,
What sairs your grammars?
Ye'd better taen up spades and shools,
Or knappin-hammers.


A set o' dull, conceited hashes
Confuse their brains in college classes!
They gang in stirks, and come out asses,
Plain truth to speak;
An' syne they think to climb Parnassus
By dint o' Greek!


Gie me ae spark o' nature's fire,
That's a' the learning I desire;
Then tho' I drudge thro' dub an' mire
At pleugh or cart,
My muse, tho' hamely in attire,
May touch the heart.


O for a spunk o' Allan's glee,
Or Fergusson's the bauld an' slee,
Or bright Lapraik's, my friend to be,
If I can hit it!
That would be lear eneugh for me,
If I could get it.


Now, sir, if ye hae friends enow,
Tho' real friends, I b'lieve, are few;
Yet, if your catalogue be fu',
I'se no insist:
But, gif ye want ae friend that's true,
I'm on your list.


I winna blaw about mysel,
As ill I like my fauts to tell;
But friends, an' folk that wish me well,
They sometimes roose me;
Tho' I maun own, as mony still
As far abuse me.


There's ae wee faut they whiles lay to me,
I like the lasses—Gude forgie me!
For mony a plack they wheedle frae me
At dance or fair;
Maybe some ither thing they gie me,
They weel can spare.


But Mauchline Race, or Mauchline Fair,
I should be proud to meet you there;
We'se gie ae night's discharge to care,
If we forgather;
An' hae a swap o' rhymin-ware
Wi' ane anither.


The four-gill chap, we'se gar him clatter,
An' kirsen him wi' reekin water;
Syne we'll sit down an' tak our whitter,
To cheer our heart;
An' faith, we'se be acquainted better
Before we part.


Awa ye selfish, war'ly race,
Wha think that havins, sense, an' grace,
Ev'n love an' friendship should give place
To catch-the-plack!
I dinna like to see your face,
Nor hear your crack.


But ye whom social pleasure charms
Whose hearts the tide of kindness warms,
Who hold your being on the terms,
"Each aid the others,"
Come to my bowl, come to my arms,
My friends, my brothers!


But, to conclude my lang epistle,
As my auld pen's worn to the gristle,
Twa lines frae you wad gar me fissle,
Who am, most fervent,
While I can either sing or whistle,
Your friend and servant.

THE SUN had clos'd the winter day,
The curless quat their roarin play,
And hunger'd maukin taen her way,
To kail-yards green,
While faithless snaws ilk step betray
Whare she has been.


The thresher's weary flingin-tree,
The lee-lang day had tired me;
And when the day had clos'd his e'e,
Far i' the west,
Ben i' the spence, right pensivelie,
I gaed to rest.


There, lanely by the ingle-cheek,
I sat and ey'd the spewing reek,
That fill'd, wi' hoast-provoking smeek,
The auld clay biggin;
An' heard the restless rattons squeak
About the riggin.


All in this mottie, misty clime,
I backward mus'd on wasted time,
How I had spent my youthfu' prime,
An' done nae thing,
But stringing blethers up in rhyme,
For fools to sing.


Had I to guid advice but harkit,
I might, by this, hae led a market,
Or strutted in a bank and clarkit
My cash-account;
While here, half-mad, half-fed, half-sarkit.
Is a' th' amount.


I started, mutt'ring, "blockhead! coof!"
And heav'd on high my waukit loof,
To swear by a' yon starry roof,
Or some rash aith,
That I henceforth wad be rhyme-proof
Till my last breath—


When click! the string the snick did draw;
An' jee! the door gaed to the wa';
An' by my ingle-lowe I saw,
Now bleezin bright,
A tight, outlandish hizzie, braw,
Come full in sight.


Ye need na doubt, I held my whisht;
The infant aith, half-form'd, was crusht
I glowr'd as eerie's I'd been dusht
In some wild glen;
When sweet, like honest Worth, she blusht,
An' steppèd ben.


Green, slender, leaf-clad holly-boughs
Were twisted, gracefu', round her brows;
I took her for some Scottish Muse,
By that same token;
And come to stop those reckless vows,
Would soon been broken.


A "hair-brain'd, sentimental trace"
Was strongly markèd in her face;
A wildly-witty, rustic grace
Shone full upon her;
Her eye, ev'n turn'd on empty space,
Beam'd keen with honour.


Down flow'd her robe, a tartan sheen,
Till half a leg was scrimply seen;
An' such a leg! my bonie Jean
Could only peer it;
Sae straught, sae taper, tight an' clean—
Nane else came near it.


Her mantle large, of greenish hue,
My gazing wonder chiefly drew:
Deep lights and shades, bold-mingling, threw
A lustre grand;
And seem'd, to my astonish'd view,
A well-known land.


Here, rivers in the sea were lost;
There, mountains to the skies were toss't:
Here, tumbling billows mark'd the coast,
With surging foam;
There, distant shone Art's lofty boast,
The lordly dome.


Here, Doon pour'd down his far-fetch'd floods;
There, well-fed Irwine stately thuds:
Auld hermit Ayr staw thro' his woods,
On to the shore;
And many a lesser torrent scuds,
With seeming roar.


Low, in a sandy valley spread,
An ancient borough rear'd her head;
Still, as in Scottish story read,
She boasts a race
To ev'ry nobler virtue bred,
And polish'd grace. 2


By stately tow'r, or palace fair,
Or ruins pendent in the air,
Bold stems of heroes, here and there,
I could discern;
Some seem'd to muse, some seem'd to dare,
With feature stern.


My heart did glowing transport feel,
To see a race heroic 3 wheel,
And brandish round the deep-dyed steel,
In sturdy blows;
While, back-recoiling, seem'd to reel
Their Suthron foes.


His Country's Saviour, 4 mark him well!
Bold Richardton's heroic swell,; 5
The chief, on Sark who glorious fell, 6
In high command;
And he whom ruthless fates expel
His native land.


There, where a sceptr'd Pictish shade
Stalk'd round his ashes lowly laid, 7
I mark'd a martial race, pourtray'd
In colours strong:
Bold, soldier-featur'd, undismay'd,
They strode along.


Thro' many a wild, romantic grove, 8
Near many a hermit-fancied cove
(Fit haunts for friendship or for love,
In musing mood),
An aged Judge, I saw him rove,
Dispensing good.


With deep-struck, reverential awe,
The learned Sire and Son I saw: 9
To Nature's God, and Nature's law,
They gave their lore;
This, all its source and end to draw,
That, to adore.


Brydon's brave ward 10 I well could spy,
Beneath old Scotia's smiling eye:
Who call'd on Fame, low standing by,
To hand him on,
Where many a patriot-name on high,
And hero shone.


DUAN SECONDWith musing-deep, astonish'd stare,
I view'd the heavenly-seeming Fair;
A whispering throb did witness bear
Of kindred sweet,
When with an elder sister's air
She did me greet.


"All hail! my own inspired bard!
In me thy native Muse regard;
Nor longer mourn thy fate is hard,
Thus poorly low;
I come to give thee such reward,
As we bestow!


"Know, the great genius of this land
Has many a light aerial band,
Who, all beneath his high command,
Harmoniously,
As arts or arms they understand,
Their labours ply.


"They Scotia's race among them share:
Some fire the soldier on to dare;
Some rouse the patriot up to bare
Corruption's heart:
Some teach the bard—a darling care—
The tuneful art.


"'Mong swelling floods of reeking gore,
They, ardent, kindling spirits pour;
Or, 'mid the venal senate's roar,
They, sightless, stand,
To mend the honest patriot-lore,
And grace the hand.


"And when the bard, or hoary sage,
Charm or instruct the future age,
They bind the wild poetric rage
In energy,
Or point the inconclusive page
Full on the eye.


"Hence, Fullarton, the brave and young;
Hence, Dempster's zeal-inspired tongue;
Hence, sweet, harmonious Beattie sung
His 'Minstrel lays';
Or tore, with noble ardour stung,
The sceptic's bays.


"To lower orders are assign'd
The humbler ranks of human-kind,
The rustic bard, the lab'ring hind,
The artisan;
All choose, as various they're inclin'd,
The various man.


"When yellow waves the heavy grain,
The threat'ning storm some strongly rein;
Some teach to meliorate the plain
With tillage-skill;
And some instruct the shepherd-train,
Blythe o'er the hill.


"Some hint the lover's harmless wile;
Some grace the maiden's artless smile;
Some soothe the lab'rer's weary toil
For humble gains,
And make his cottage-scenes beguile
His cares and pains.


"Some, bounded to a district-space
Explore at large man's infant race,
To mark the embryotic trace
Of rustic bard;
And careful note each opening grace,
A guide and guard.


"Of these am I—Coila my name:
And this district as mine I claim,
Where once the Campbells, chiefs of fame,
Held ruling power:
I mark'd thy embryo-tuneful flame,
Thy natal hour.


"With future hope I oft would gaze
Fond, on thy little early ways,
Thy rudely, caroll'd, chiming phrase,
In uncouth rhymes;
Fir'd at the simple, artless lays
Of other times.


"I saw thee seek the sounding shore,
Delighted with the dashing roar;
Or when the North his fleecy store
Drove thro' the sky,
I saw grim Nature's visage hoar
Struck thy young eye.


"Or when the deep green-mantled earth
Warm cherish'd ev'ry floweret's birth,
And joy and music pouring forth
In ev'ry grove;
I saw thee eye the general mirth
With boundless love.


"When ripen'd fields and azure skies
Call'd forth the reapers' rustling noise,
I saw thee leave their ev'ning joys,
And lonely stalk,
To vent thy bosom's swelling rise,
In pensive walk.


"When youthful love, warm-blushing, strong,
Keen-shivering, shot thy nerves along,
Those accents grateful to thy tongue,
Th' adorèd Name,
I taught thee how to pour in song,
To soothe thy flame.


"I saw thy pulse's maddening play,
Wild send thee Pleasure's devious way,
Misled by Fancy's meteor-ray,
By passion driven;
But yet the light that led astray
Was light from Heaven.


"I taught thy manners-painting strains,
The loves, the ways of simple swains,
Till now, o'er all my wide domains
Thy fame extends;
And some, the pride of Coila's plains,
Become thy friends.


"Thou canst not learn, nor I can show,
To paint with Thomson's landscape glow;
Or wake the bosom-melting throe,
With Shenstone's art;
Or pour, with Gray, the moving flow
Warm on the heart.


"Yet, all beneath th' unrivall'd rose,
T e lowly daisy sweetly blows;
Tho' large the forest's monarch throws
His army shade,
Yet green the juicy hawthorn grows,
Adown the glade.


"Then never murmur nor repine;
Strive in thy humble sphere to shine;
And trust me, not Potosi's mine,
Nor king's regard,
Can give a bliss o'ermatching thine,
A rustic bard.


"To give my counsels all in one,
Thy tuneful flame still careful fan:
Preserve the dignity of Man,
With soul erect;
And trust the Universal Plan
Will all protect.

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