Water From Cranna Hill

By Rachel S Robertson
~~~~~~
Recited at a Social Meeting on the Occasion of the New Water Supply for the Village of Aberchirder Being Turned on by Mrs Tayler, Rothiemay House.

1. Dear frien's, we're met in social style,
Oor herts brimfu' o' harmless glee,
Some oors in mirth awa tae wile,
Tae speak an' hear, be seen an' see.
But wherefore haud we holiday,
On this braw simmer afternoon;
Oh, we've good reason tae be gay,
On this eventfu' twelfth o' June.

 

6. The "Little Haven" noo will rest,
The "Black Spoot" an' the "Brochil Well"
*
That aft hae been sae sairly press't,
For water as the evenin' fell.
Their day is ower - like muckle mair,
That's auld - aside they'll noo be set,
Though lang oor wants they had tae sair,
Fu shortly they'll be oot o' date.
The timmer "yokes" will be flung by,
An' hence frae this, say years a score.
Fan ane it sees a bairn will cry -
"Eh, mither, fat is that thing for."

 

2. We've seen the gay procession pass,
An' heard the music's stirrin' soun'
As mony a merry lad an' lass,
Gaed marchin' thro' oor blythe wee toon.
The smiles were beamin' ower ilk face,
An' pleasure olka hert di fill,
As loud they welcomed tae this place,
The water clear frae Cranna Hill.

 

7. Still happy evenin's hae been spent
Around the wells in by-gane days,
Wi' young fowks daffin' merriement,
An' merry bairnies sports an' plays;
Ay, here the laddie aft has met
The lass o' whom his hert was fain;
She well pleased then his help wad get,
Her "fraucht" tae cairry hame again.

 

3. 'Tis scarce a year since first began,
Oor fowk to think the matter ower,
An' often did they meet an' plan.
Afore it fairly cam' in power.
A committee was set aside,
Composed o' men whom a' could trust,
Wha faithfu' at their post did bide,
An sattled a'thing fair an' just.
They wrocht oot what they thocht was best,
That they did richt we'll a' agree,
So hearty thanks maun be express't,
Unto the worthy committee.

 

8. Here neebour wives could haud a crack
When things uncommon were a-gaun,
Retailin' mony a "perfeck fack",
Wi serious face an' upraised han';
But this maun noo be o' the past
For shorter time 'twill tak tae fill
The pails at pumps whence gushin' fast
Comes water clear frae Cranna Hill.

 

4. An' architect wi' muckle care,
Planned hoo the wark could best be deen,
An noo success has shown hoo fair,
His judgment o' the case has been.
Let thanks tae him be gi'en - indeed,
We're truly debtors to his skill,
An' will be gratefu' whilst we need,
The water clear frae Cranna Hill.

 

9. There's mony things that fowk may want,
Nor waur for lack o' them need be;
But fan the water pure is scant
Ill aff we a' maun shortly be;
'Mong a' the gifts a kindly Han'
Has gi'en tae us, it stan's fu' high,
Cold water is a boon that man,
If left without, would shortly die.
Oh, bonnie is the water clear,
That sparkles frae the mountain rill,
An' blythe are we since brocht sae near,
Is that which springs on Cranna Hill.

 

5. But plannin's no the only thing,
If fowk an object wad attain,
An' plans could ne'er the water bring,
Withoot the hardy workin' men.
The wark was sair, for stanes war thrang,
But weildin' aye the pick and spade,
Wi' cheerfu' toil in wisna lang,
Till a' the water-pipes were laid.
The plumber lads did weel their pairt,
An' didna waste their time awa,
The job was finished ticht an' smairt,
Sae lat us thank the workmen a'.
10. Our best thanks to the lady kind
Who turned the water on today;
She's ane who never is behind
When kindly deeds are in the way.
She represents oor good Lord Fife,
Wha oor respect sae weel commands,
An' may he lang be spared in life,
The owner o' these peacefu' lands;
An' may this day be ne'er forgot,
But minded aye wi' richt guidwill,
As that on which oor village got
The water pure frae Cranna Hill.
* "Little Haven", "Brochil" and "Black Spout" were the local names of the wells whence the village for many years drew its supply of water.  ( These have been restored and can still be seen today)
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From the book of songs and poems, 'On Bogie's Banks and Bonnie Deveronside'
by
Rachel S. Robertson
Inverness
1887

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