The River Shin


Classic Shin, on whose heath-clad banks and flowing waters the great and

good fly fishers roam, who never saw "Kelt of Baggit" there--the haunt

of monarchs of the sea, and shepherd swains that watch His flocks, and

feed His Dams--the theme of poetess, and the learned. O, "Ephemera," how

beautifully written is that "Book of the Salmon;" how exquisitely

delineated that "Ova;" how admirably that "golden fish," which bounds up
/> falls and cataracts in that purling "meandering" stream; how charming to

gaze upon that lovely "Goddess of the Brooks"--the famed Ondine--how

rightly represented. Oh! excellent "Ephemera"--my good and constant

friend--the "great and good Will Blacker's" tears (I blush) descend like

rain through these sky lights, and damp the very sheets my palsied pen

doth blot. Alas! well-a-day-that noble salmon fishing--what sport! These

lean and bellows'd sides are winded--this flattened chest, once full,

now dented--these calves, once plump, now thin and gone--these shins,

once clad, are now protruding. The "puss" more chronic heaves, yes, I

still can fish! These cheeks, how pale (their bones "can't grind"), once

rosy, the pride of more than "Reva's" lovely blooming rose, my blessed

bosom friend, my wife, whose lamp is trimmed. O, "Ephemera!" friend,

when shall we meet, with rod in hand, on pure and crystal Shin?--



"When summer comes,

The heather bells entice,

Our feet to roam.

The mournful dove,

Within the dale invites,

To peace and love."



O, summer's glorious sun! I await thee, to tan this shrivelled, shorn

hide. O! come, and regenerate this sapless tree with heavenly warmth.



My heart's in the Highlands,

My heart is not here;

My heart's in the Highlands,

Chasing the deer,

Chasing the wild deer,

And following the roe,

My heart's in the Highlands,

Wherever I go.



I cannot add a fly to the list for the Shin in the "Book of the Salmon,"

by "Ephemera," except that I submit to the notice of the great salmon

fishers of Shin those model flies in my list for trial, which, no doubt,

will kill. I never fished the Shin, although I have been twice near it.

Mr. Young, of Invershin, the renter of the river, will show gentlemen

angling there every possible facility, civility, and politeness. The

"Queen's Gap," in the cruives, is lifted on sabbath days.



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