An Inventory – Wull the Ranter

From May 1930, Blantyre author unknown. Shared here by Wilma Bolton.

Midnight, enclosed in a twelve square,
My ain wee hoose, it’s clean tho’ puir,
I hae a fire an’s bleezin finely,
The coals were gie’n to me kin’ly.
‘Tis no’ a bleeze to gie alarm,
But just enough to keep me warm.
An’ here I fin’ a’ life’s enjoyment,
There’s ae thing wrang—I’ve nae employment.

For guid’s an’ gear I’ve verra little,
A teapat, goblet and a kettle,
A sideboard an’ a dresser sittin’
That are a nuisance when I’m flittin’
Twa three chairs that’s tint the splendour
They had whan gotten frae the vendor,
Forby a pram the weenie lies in
(The need o’ sic is no’ surprisin’)
A rocker an’ an easy chair
That needs a seat o’ springs an’ hair
(Its legs by leuks are gay unstable)
As rickety’s what’s on a table)
An’ syne a desk to haud my papers,
Sic as this, an’ ither capers,
An’ oh, I near forgot, a cat,
An’ lately too, I had a rat
That cost me mony a sleepless nicht
An’ gart the wife near dee wi fricht,
But thank the Lord ‘snow in the river,
Droon’d an’ be damm’d to it forever.

Syne I’ve some pictur’s on the wa’,
Ane a brither that did fa’
On Flander’s field in death’s cauld grip
Whan Hell let loose did Europe rip.
Twa panels too, wi nature flow’rs,
An’ owre abune the brace there tow’rs
Him in a frame, nae Scotsman, spurns
Our ain “Immortal Rabbie Burns.”

A wife an’ three wee rosy limmers,
The eldest, but eleven simmers,
A regular sweet we modest beauty
An’ natur’d like my ain dear Beattie
The tither whan in the door she scuds
‘Slike Phoebus burstin’ through the cluds,
A rougish elf whan buskit neatly
Fair steals my verra he’rt completely;
The youngest, but some four months auld
That I’ll protect while I’ the fauld,
God grant I’ll aye can win their fother
To keep them brawlie a’ thegither.

This to ilka ane in Blantyre,
Is guids an’ gear o’ “Wull the Ranter.”

Pictured for illustration, the inside of a “more luxurious” miner’s 1930s home.


On social media:

Carol Crombie Must’ve been a really hard existence – can’t believe how lucky we are nowadays

Pamela Campbell People made the most of what they had!

The Blantyre Project and in a nice way looked out for neighbours. So many people these days, couldnt even tell you who their neighbours are.

Janette Innes McElwee Never knew any different we all were equal. Xx

Jean Spence Your are right and we’re all in the same boat. Once a week bathe time. Cold water the rest of the week but happy we were 🤗

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