William Dunbar

Here you will find the Long Poem Lament for the Makers of poet William Dunbar

Lament for the Makers

I THAT in heill was and gladness 
Am trublit now with great sickness 
And feblit with infirmitie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Our plesance here is all vain glory, 
This fals world is but transitory, 
The flesh is bruckle, the Feynd is slee:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

The state of man does change and vary, 
Now sound, now sick, now blyth, now sary, 
Now dansand mirry, now like to die:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

No state in Erd here standis sicker; 
As with the wynd wavis the wicker 
So wannis this world's vanitie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Unto the Death gois all Estatis, 
Princis, Prelatis, and Potestatis, 
Baith rich and poor of all degree:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He takis the knichtis in to the field 
Enarmit under helm and scheild; 
Victor he is at all mellie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

That strong unmerciful tyrand 
Takis, on the motheris breast sowkand, 
The babe full of benignitie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He takis the campion in the stour, 
The captain closit in the tour, 
The lady in bour full of bewtie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He spairis no lord for his piscence, 
Na clerk for his intelligence; 
His awful straik may no man flee:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Art-magicianis and astrologgis, 
Rethoris, logicianis, and theologgis, 
Them helpis no conclusionis slee:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

In medecine the most practicianis, 
Leechis, surrigianis, and physicianis, 
Themself from Death may not supplee:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

I see that makaris amang the lave 
Playis here their padyanis, syne gois to grave; 
Sparit is nocht their facultie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has done petuously devour 
The noble Chaucer, of makaris flour, 
The Monk of Bury, and Gower, all three:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

The good Sir Hew of Eglintoun, 
Ettrick, Heriot, and Wintoun, 
He has tane out of this cuntrie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

That scorpion fell has done infeck 
Maister John Clerk, and James Afflek, 
Fra ballat-making and tragedie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Holland and Barbour he has berevit; 
Alas! that he not with us levit 
Sir Mungo Lockart of the Lee:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Clerk of Tranent eke he has tane, 
That made the anteris of Gawaine; 
Sir Gilbert Hay endit has he:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has Blind Harry and Sandy Traill 
Slain with his schour of mortal hail, 
Quhilk Patrick Johnstoun might nought flee:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has reft Merseir his endite, 
That did in luve so lively write, 
So short, so quick, of sentence hie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

He has tane Rowll of Aberdene, 
And gentill Rowll of Corstorphine; 
Two better fallowis did no man see:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

In Dunfermline he has tane Broun 
With Maister Robert Henrysoun; 
Sir John the Ross enbrast has he:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

And he has now tane, last of a, 
Good gentil Stobo and Quintin Shaw, 
Of quhom all wichtis hes pitie:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Good Maister Walter Kennedy 
In point of Death lies verily; 
Great ruth it were that so suld be:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Sen he has all my brether tane, 
He will naught let me live alane; 
Of force I man his next prey be:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me. 

Since for the Death remeid is none, 
Best is that we for Death dispone, 
After our death that live may we:-- 
   Timor Mortis conturbat me.