. January 25 is the birthday of Scottish poet Robert Burns (1759–1796). On or near this day, Scots worldwide gather for a supper of haggis (traditionally made of sheep innards), whisky, and poetry. Henderson’s Salad Table is a vegetarian legend. This vibrant family business had expanded to three locations before closing permanently due to the 2020 pandemic. See Henderson's vegetarian haggis recipe here. . Now it’s haggis and clapshot for Rabbie Burns’ Night,Janet Henderson’s fashion, her Table in mind;What a clamjamfry met for that vegan delightIn a basement where François Villon might have dined!The young Janet was sickly, but her taste she refinedTo “eat better, live better,” and popularizeAn uncouth bill of fare in a town disinclined;To proud Edinburgh swains she dared not advertiseMeatless meals, but her victuals pleased palates and eyes.Every day twelve fresh salads, desserts, steaming stew,Verdant superfood soup, moreish brownies, leek pies,Mushroom crêpes, beetroot curry, whisky-flavored ragout,And the legend so famed since nineteen sixty-two:Scottish smoked lentil haggis, red wine gravy, and mash,At this intimate spot suiting douce rendezvous.Janet’s restaurant succeeded with local panache;Her grown grandchildren joined her, but then came the crash.A foul plague from the east caused sick rulers to fearCommerce, health, and good cheer—might cost lives and their cash;Thus they rendered life dour and closed tills for the year.Och! Three bistros unique stand abandoned and drear;Still to Scots, a defeat rarely alters their stanceOr remembrance. Burns’ birthday calls topers to hearWhat their poets compose, and devotedly danceWith arms linked, in fond memory of graces divine,Drinking drams of Glenfiddich to toast auld lang syne. . Gloss clapshot: (line 1) mashed potatoes and turnipsclamjamfry: (line 3) rowdy crowd douce: (line 15) sweet, pleasurable Dour: (line 20) severe, humorlesstopers: (line 23) drinkers)moreish (line 11) evoking a desire for more . . The Selkirk Grace Prayer afore eatin that’s attreebute tae Robert Burns Some hae meat and canna eat,And some wad eat that want it,But we hae meat and we can eat,Sae let the Lord be thankit! . . Margaret Coats lives in California. She holds a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and Language from Harvard University. She has retired from a career of teaching literature, languages, and writing that included considerable work in homeschooling for her own family and others.