Barbarian Poetry: Tho’ She Hearns the Goggy Rostum

Tho’ She Hearns the Goggy Rostum

This is an astoundingly popular Scots Celtic love song from the 8th century, but historians have absolutely no idea what it actually means. Some have suggested it contains fragments of a secret code. Others say it is just doggerel verse or outright gibberish. It was last performed in 1621 at the court of King James I (James VI of Scotland), who immediately sentenced the minstrel to death by stoning.

Tho’ she hearns the goggy rostum
On mae wyzzled bairns o’ yore,
An’ gurdles all the shaegans
An’ then gurdles them some mar’,
I dinnae kenna naen she fleps
an’ shurgles on the floore–
She’s curdy an’ she’s perdy an’
I’ll lof’ ‘er evermar’.

Froom the fyords o’ frenghie Naurweigh
To the Edinboro shaure,
Froom the haggis plase in Glasgo’
To the haggis plase necks daure,
She’ll ne’er know I pyne fir ‘er
Or gemp ‘er pinafores–
She’ll ne’er tayste mae mumble-shroom
Or quagh its loughin’ spaures.

Her keirghans, ever-lastynge,
her plunters gullytine,
her neeps are scut wi’ paurridge
an’ her yurgoes taste o’ wyne.
I ken I’ll alweighs lof ‘er
an’ skreigh mae spilly yairns
Auntil our greppy slumbernunks
all linger ‘neath the cairns.
Ay, ’til our gloopy globbies laye
a-ling’rin’ ‘neath the cairns.

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