The Bane-Setter.

A poem by David Rorie

Oor Jock's gude mither's second man
At banes was unco skilly;
It cam' by heirskep frae an aunt,
Leeb Tod o' Nether Tillie.
An' when he thocht to sough awa',
He sent for Jock, ay did he,
An' wulled him the bane-doctorin',
Wi' a' the lave o's smiddy.

A braw doon-settin' 'twas for Jock,
An' for a while it paid him,
For wi's great muckle nieves like mells
He pit in banes wi' smeddum.
Ay! mony a bane he snappit in
At elbuck, thee, an' shouther;
Gin ony wouldna gang his gait,
Jock dang them a' to poother.

Noo, smiddy wark's a droothy job,
Sae whiles Jock wat his whustle,
When wi' a horse-shoe or a bane
He'd held some unco tussle.
But even though miracklous whiles,
It mattered nane whativer,
For whaur's the body disna ken
A drucken doctor's cliver?

Ae nicht when Jock was gey weel on,
An' warslin' wi' some shoein',
They brocht a bane case intil him
That proved puir Jock's undoin',
A cadger wi' an auld cork leg,
An' fou as Jock or fouer,
Wha swore that o' his lower limb
He'd fairly lost the pooer.

Jock fin's the leg, an' shaks his heid,
Syne tells the man richt solemn,
"Your knee-pan's slippit up your thee
Aside your spinal column;
But gin ye'll tak a seat owre here,
An' lat them haud ye ticht, man,
I'se warrant for a quart o' beer
I'll quickly hae ye richt, man."

Jock yokit noo wi' rale guid wull
To better the condeetion,
While Corkie swore he had his leg
Ca'd a' to crockaneetion.
Jock banned the lamp-"'twas in his een"-
An' deaved wi' Corkie's granin',
Quo' he, "Gin ye'll pit oot the licht
I'll gey sune pit the bane in!"

Oot went the licht, Jock got his grup,
He yarkit an' he ruggit,
He doobled up puir Corkie's leg,
Syne strauchtened it an' tuggit.
An' while that baith the twa o' them
Were sayin' some orra wordies,
Auld Corkie's leg, wi' hauf o's breeks,
Cam' clean aff at the hurdies.

Jock swat wi' fear, an' in the dark
He crep' attour the smiddy,
For, weel-a-wat, he thocht his wark
Would land him on the widdy.
An' wi' the leg he ran till's hoose,
Just half way doon the clachan,
His cronies oxterin' Corkie oot,
An' nearly deein' o' lauchin'.

But at Jock's door they stude an hour,
An' vainly kicked an' knockit,
Sin' Jock, in a' the fear o' death,
Had got it barred an' lockit.
An' 'twas na till the neist forenune
They fand the leg, weel hidden,
For Jock was oot afore daylicht
An' stuck it in the midden.

This feenished Jock, an' efter han'
He buckled til his ain wark,
For sune a' owre the kintra-side
They kent aboot his bane wark,
An' hoo a law-wer fleggit Jock
At Corkie's instigation,
An' gart him pay a five-pun' note
By way o' compensation.

Ne sutor ultra crepidam
Is gude enough for maist o's,
For aye there's wark that's bude to get
The better o' the best o's.
An' just as doctors canna shoe
Or haud a hin' leg stiddy,
Ye needa seek for surgery
Inside a country smiddy.

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