The New Licht o' Auld Reekie (2)

It fell upon an April nicht -
   Ha! ha! the lichtin' o't,
The darkening toon was filled wi' licht -
   Ha! ha! the lichtin' o't.
Frae west to east wi' sudden flare,
Frae Leith Street steep to Rutland Square,
A dazzlin' licht flashed everywhere -
   Ha! ha! the lichtin' o't.

For mony a day our streets sae braw 
Were ploughed & trenched frae strand to wa'
Wi' tunnels deep and holes sae wide
The traffic aft was turned aside,
And subways built the wires to hide -

At length the job was finished quite
The engines set and a' put right
The Provost gied a banquet fine,
Regaled his guests wi' sparklin' wine,
For losh, they weel kent hoo to dine

The Provost's wife, sae douce and nice -
A lever pressed, and in a trice -
From post to post the electric spark
Flew swift as lichtnin' to its mark,
And noo oor streets need ne'er be dark

Auld Reekie ance was dark I ween
When blinkin' wicks were dimly seen
And mony a Bailie staggering hame
Slyly to face an angry dame
Found sheltering darkness hide his shame

But tak' ye tent, my billies, noo
Gin ye at nicht get stotterin' fou
Think na' the dark will screen your gait
Or hide your boozy maudlin state
A searchin' licht will seal your fate

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Copyright © 2001, Jack Campin