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Saturday, 21 January 2012

The Poet's Choices

Robert Burns faced some of the most critical choices of his life during his late twenties. Scotland’s bard was tormented by indecision. How could he best make a living: as a poet, farmer, or excise-man? Should he share his life with a lady of good birth and education, or a woman of his own class?

On 13 March 1788, Burns agreed to lease Ellisland, only a few weeks after saying he had no intention of ‘beggaring’ himself by taking a farm. Burns loved the countryside around Ellisland. As he walked by the banks of the ever-rippling River Nith, he composed some of his most famous poems, including the classic Tam O' Shanter.
You can find out more about Burns’ life at Ellisland, and about the life choices he made there, in my feature for the latest issue of Highlander magazine.
Images: Engraving of Robert Burns. Great Authors of English Literature, (Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1899).
Ellisland farmhouse © Sue and Nigel Wilkes.

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