Friend and general, artistic instigator Tessa Lowe once invited me to a Burns' Night, asking me to do the Toast For The Lassies. I figured it was a Burns' classic that I just had to print out, show up and recite. No such luck. Hilarity ensued when I googled it the afternoon of the event (well prepared as always), and realised no such thing existed, that each toast should be individual to the man, and that I was going to have to write the damn thing. So, here is the Toast/bit-of-light-verse that I came up with. Came out quite well, and is free to be adapted/stolen by any bird that finds himself in similar soup :)
Toast to the Lassies
When Tess, fair maiden of the noble sex
First inveigled me with text
To reach into my lusty quiver
and instructed me to thus deliver
a Toast to the Lassies on Burns's Night
then I must confess that there just might
have been some slight misunderstanding,
I figured she was simply handing
me the task to read aloud
some prewrit verses by the lyric crowd
a job befitting any dunce
I texted "I'm your man" at once,
and then, at 4 this afteroon
I nearly fell into a swoon
and realised that I'd no such luck,
that I would have to make it up.
And so to the lassies, where begin
when I have not the voice to sing
to speak aloud, extol their praises
hard as steel and soft as daisies
sweet as summer, warm and kind
endowed with bossoms and with mind
bedecked with jewels, or fair, or plain
yet sure to drive some soul insane
expressing in their many faces
all the virtues, all the graces.
free of spirit, light of touch
the tall, the shy, the short, the butch
the overlooked, the never winning,
the long of tooth and the just beginning.
And if these words don't go down well
then please forgive this doggerell,
and if my line seem rushed and lazy
and overall a bit male gazey
and if at times I seem quite lost
the point I hope i've got across
that the girls, I say, deserve our backing
for they possess what we are lacking,
and so, in short, lets raise our glasses
lift up our arms, get off our asses
and toast, my friends, to all the lassies.
Lay me on a mountain side
Let the rain and the wind scour me clean
Let the grass grow through me
and the earth consume me.
Let me be born again in the Spring.