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Last week I attended a gathering of the Robert Burns Guild of Speakers as we paid a visit to the new offices of the Robert Burns World Federation in Kilmarnock. In conversation, my attention was drawn to the grave in the Laigh kirkyard opposite, of Tam Samson, an old friend of Robert Burns. The poet wrote a great Elegy for Tam and, as it is quite a long poem, today I’m recording just the Epitaph from that work.

“Tam Samson's weel-worn clay here lies

Ye canting zealots, spare him!

If honest worth in Heaven rise,

Ye'll mend or ye win near him.”

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