What is the theme for "My Heart's in the Highlands"?

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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With many of his poems written in the Scottish dialect and modeled after old Scottish ballads and songs, Robert Burns conquered the hearts of his countrymen as he became their voice. The Scots found his dialect, his songs, and the cadence of his poetry to be the very fiber of their own hearts."My Heart's in the Highlands" has a theme that is very simply this: The love of my country and a nostalgia for the beauty of Scotland. Shakespeare once wrote, "Praising what is lost/Make the remembrance dear."

This is the meaning of Burns' song: When I call to my mind the beauty of Northern Scotland

...the mountains high cover'd with snow,
...the green valleys below,
...the forests and wild-hanging woods,
...the torrents and loud-pouring floods!

I am there again; I am there with a heart that feels too big for my body because this is the land that I love, this is my childhood, my youthful follies and loves, my family--all that is I. 


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