Happy New Year, Marines

Here for New Year is a Scots-language poem penned by Robert Burns in 1788, well-known in the English-speaking countries.  Burns is not the author of the first verse, as he admitted to having written it down as it was told to him by an elderly man.  Experts say that Burns most certainly wrote the rest of the poem, however. I reprint it here as I recall my Marine Corps friends and acquaintances, many of whom are still with us, some who are not.


Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and auld lang syne?

For auld lang syne, my jo,
for auld lang syne,
we’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne

And surely ye’ll be your pint-stoup!
and surely I’ll be mine!
And we’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.


We twa hae run about the braes,
and pou’d the gowans fine;
But we’ve wander’d mony a weary fit,
sin’ auld lang syne.


We twa hae paidl’d in the burn,
frae morning sun till dine;
But seas between us braid hae roar’d
sin’ auld lang syne.


And there’s a hand, my trusty fiere!
and gie’s a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll tak’ a right gude-willie waught,
for auld lang syne.


As a post-script, James Watson printed a similar verse in 1711:

Should Old Acquaintance be forgot,
and never thought upon;
The flames of Love extinguished,
and fully past and gone:

Is thy sweet Heart now grown so cold,
that loving Breast of thine;
That thou canst never once reflect
On old long syne.

In any case, Happy New Year everyone.  May God bless you mightily with good health and happiness in the year ahead.

Semper Fidelis,


Published by


Retired Marine, historian, writer.

5 thoughts on “Happy New Year, Marines”

  1. H & K,

    As I write this it is nearly midnight in England.

    We do hope you both have a happy and healthy New Year.

    Now at long last, I know what Auld Lang Syne means. The older I get the more I found how precious little I know…even though I read more and look up more things.

    At any rate, thank you for sending it along. Made me a bit misty.

    K, your ecard was super. Fireworks over a number of iconic world sites.

    Again thank you for your friendship and thinking of us.


    Tad and Taffy

    Sent from my iPad


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