The Shotts Docken
(The story of Tam’s Loup)
There lived in Shotts in olden days,
drunkard quite devoid of grace.
Whom demon drink tried hard to damn,
The people called him ‘Drunken Tam’.
The only friend he had indeed,
Was his poor horse, his faithful steed.
When Tam was helpless full of drink,
The horse for him would work and think.
For when Tam couldn’t cope with reins,
The horse itself had far more brains.
And often in the dead of night,
Would lead Tam home to cottage light.
He wasn’t so bad a man at heart,
And often tried from drink to part.
But what some call “a social grace”,
Had poor Tam held in death’s embrace.
One night across the bleak Shotts Hill,
The mist came down and boded ill.
The horse, though faithful to the end,
Stumbling blindly, threw his friend.
When on the morn the mist did clear,
They found poor Tam’s dead body near.
And then they made another find,
Which told Tam’s change of heart and mind.
For on the ground where Tam lay sprawled,
On a docken leaf these words were scrawled.
“Twixt the saddle and the ground
Mercy was sought and mercy found”.
That night Tam got his sudden call,
And only God who knoweth all.
Can tell what happened near the sod,
When Tam went out to meet his God.
This tale is vouched for very well,
Because the place where poor Tam fell.
Was called ‘Tam’s Loup’ you’ll see it still,
Beside the quarry at Shotts Hill,
So even in that far off day,
Drunken driving did not pay.