The themes of all his more ambitious poems can be traced to Chaucerian sources.
On the other hand, there are elements in the poem which show that it is not entirely the work of a poor crowder; and these (notably references to historical and literary authorities, and occasional reminiscences of the literary tricks of the Scots Chaucerian school) have inclined some to the view that the text, as we have it, is an edited version of the minstrel's rough song story.
He belongs, with James Henryson and Douglas, to the Scots Chaucerian school.
His wilder humour and greater heat of blood give him opportunities in which the Chaucerian tradition is not helpful, or even possible.
These are plain manly compositions in the seven-lined Chaucerian stanza.