Sketch. A Character (Poem by Robert Burns)

Old Poem



Sketch. A Character
By Robert Burns


A little, upright, pert, tart, tripping wight,
And still his precious self his dear delight;
Who loves his own smart shadow in the streets
Better than e’er the fairest she he meets:
A man of fashion, too, he made his tour,
Learn’d vive la bagatelle, et vive l’amour:
So travell’d monkeys their grimace improve,
Polish their grin, nay, sigh for ladies’ love.
Much specious lore, but little understood;
Veneering oft outshines the solid wood:
His solid sense — by inches you must tell.
But mete his cunning by the old Scots ell;
His meddling vanity, a busy fiend,
Still making work his selfish craft must mend.

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