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X. Resting upon his pilgrim-staff,
SONG. Right opposite the Palmer stood;
Where shall the lover rest, His thin dark visage seen but half,
Whom the Fates sever, Half hidden by his hood.
From his true maiden's breast Still fixed on Marmion was his look,
Parted for ever? Which he, who ill such gaze could brook,
Where, through grove deep and high, Strove by a frown to quell;
Sounds the far billow, But not for that, though more than once,
Where early violets die, Full met their stern encountering glance,
Under the willow.
Eleu loro, &c. Soft shall be his pillow.
There, through the summer day, By fits less frequent from the crowd
Cool streams are laving; Was heard the burst of laughter loud;
There, while the tempests sway, For still, as squire and archer stared
Scarce are bows waving; On that dark face and matted beard,
There, thy rest shalt thou take, Their glee and game declined.
Parted for ever, All gazed at length in silence drear,
Never again to wake,
Never, O never.
CHORUS. " Saint Mary! saw'st thou e'er such sight?
Eleu loro, &c. Never, 0 never.
Where shall the traitor rest, Full on our Lord he sets his eye;
He, the deceiver, For his best palfrey would not I
Who could win maiden's breast, Endure that sullen scowl.”
Ruin, and leave her?
In the lost battle,
Borne down by the flying,
Where mingles war's rattle,
With groans of the dying.
CHORUS. That figure stern, and face of woe,
Eleu loro, &c. There shall he be lying. Now called upon a squire :"Fitz-Eustace, know'st thou not some lay,
Her wing shall the eagle flap To speed the hungering night away ?
O'er the false-hearted; We slumber by the fire."
His warm blood the wolf shall lap,
Ere life be parted.
Shame and dishonour sit
By his grave ever; “So please you," thus the youth rejoined,
Blessing shall hallow it, “Our choicest minstrel's left behind,
Never, o never.
Eleu loro, &c. Never, O never.
It ceased, the melancholy sound; No nightingale her love-lorn tune
And silence sunk on all around. More sweetly warbles to the moon.
The air was sad; but sadder still Woe to the cause, whate'er it be,
It fell on Marmion's ear, Detain from us his melody,
And plained as if disgrace and ill, Lavished on rocks, and billows stern,
And shameful death were near. Or duller monks of Lindisfarn.
He drew his mantle past his face, Now must I venture, as I may,
Between it and the band, To sing his favourite rotundelay.”
And rested with his head a space,
Reclining on his hand.
His thoughts I scan not; but I ween,
That, could their import have been seen, A mellow voice Fitz-Eustace had,
The meanest groom in all the hall, The air he chose was wild and sad;
That e'er tied courser to a stall, Such have I heard in Scottish land,
Would scarce have wished to be their prey, Rise from the busy harvest band,
For Lutterward and Fontenaye.
High minds, of native pride and force, Now a wild chorus swells the song:
Most deeply feel thy pangs, Remorse! Oft have I listened, and stood still,
Fear, for their scourge, mean villains have, As it came softly up the hill,
Thou art the torturer of the brave! And deemed it the lament of men
Yet fatal strength they boast to steel Who languished for their native glen;
Their minds to bear the wounds they feel; And thought how sad would be such sound, Even while they writhe beneath the smart On Susquehana's swampy ground.
Of civil confict in the heart. Kentucky's wood-encumbered brake,
For soon Lord Marmion raised his head, Or wild Ontasio's boundless lake,
And, smiling, to Fitz-Eustace said: Where heart-sick exiles, in the strain,
"Is it not strange, that, as ye sung, Recalled fair Scotland's hills again!
Seemned in mine ear a death-peal rung,
vild Oni wood-enempy gronn ich sow
s stingas na thosa
Such as in nunneries they toll
Would,' thought he, as the picture grows For some departing sister's soul?
"I on its stalk had left the rose ! Say, what may this portend?"
Oh why should man's success remove The first the Palmer silence broke
The very charms that wake his love! (The live-long day he had not spoke)
Her convent's peaceful solitude " The death of a dear friend."
Is now a prison harsh and rude;
And, pent within the narrow cell,
How will her spirit chafe and swell!
How brook the stern monastic laws! Ne'er changed in worst extremity;
The penance how-and I the cause ! Marmion, whose soul could scantly brook,
Vigil and scourge-perchance even worse !" Even from his king, a haughty look ;
And twice he rose to cry--" To horse ! Whose accent of command controlled,
And twice his sovereign's mandate caine, In camps, the boldest of the bold-
Like damp upon a kindling flame: Thought, look, and utterance, failed him now, And twice he thought,- Gave I not charge Fallen was his glance, and flushed his brow; She should be safe, though not at large? For either in the tone,
They durst not, for their island, shred
One golden ringlet from her head."-
While thus in Marmion's bosom strove They shrink at sense of secret sin,
Repentance and reviving love, A feather daunts the brave;
Like whirlwinds, whose contending sway A fool's wild speech confounds the wise,
I've seen Loch Vennachar obey, And proudest princes veil their eyes
Their host the Palmer's speech had heard, Before their meanest slave.
And, talkative, took up the word :
"Aye, reverend Pilgrim, yon, who stray xv.
From Scotland's simple land away, Well might he faulter!-by his aid
To visit realms afar, Was Constance Beverley betrayed ;
Full often learn the art to know, Not that he angur'd of the doom,
Of future weal, or future woe, Which on the living closed the tomb;
By word, or sign, or star; But, tired to hear the desperate maid
Yet might a kuight his fortune hear, Threaten by turns, beseech, upbraid ;
If, knight-like, he despises fear, And wroth, because in wild despair,
Fot far from hence-if fathers old She practised on the life of Clare;
Aright our hamlet legend told." Its fugitive the church he gave,
These broken words the inenials move Though not a victim, but a slave;
(For marvels still the vulgar love ;) And deemed restraint in convent strange
And, Marmion giving license cold,
His tale the host thus gladly told.
THE HOST'S TALE.
" A clerk could tell what years have flown When the stern priests surprised their prey; Since Alexander filled our throne, His trai but deemed the favourite page
(Third monarch of that warlike name.) Was left behind, to spare his age;
And eke the time when here he came Or other if they deemed, none dared
To see Sir Hugo, then our lord : To inutter what he thought and heard:
A braver never drew a sword; Woe to the vassal who duurst pry
A wiser, never at the hour Into Lord Marinion's privacy!
Of midnight, spoke the word of power
The same, whom ancient records call
The founder of the Goblin Hall. llis conscience slept-he deemed her well,
I would, Sir Knight, your longer stay And safe secured in distant cell;
Gave you that cavern to suurvey.
Of lofty roof, and ample size, But, wakened by her favourite lay,
Beneath the castle deep it lies: And that strange Palmer's boding say,
To how the living rock profound, That fell so ominous and drear,
The floor to pave, the arch to round, Full on the object of his fear,
There never toiled a mortal arm, To aid remorse's venomed throes,
It all was wrought by word and charm; Dark tales of convent vengeance rose :
And I have heard my grandsire say, And Constance, late betrayed and scorned,
That the wild clamour and affray
Of those dread artisans of hell,
Who laboured under Hugo's spell,
Sounded as loud as ocean's war,
Among the caverns of Dunbar.
xx. Hid fears and blushes in his arins.
"The king Lord Gifford's castle sought,
Deep-labouring with uncertain thought: XVII.
Even then he inustered all his host, “ Alas!" he thought, “how changed that mien! To meet upon the western coast; How changed these timid looks have been, For Norse and Danish galleys plied, Since years of guilt, and of disguise,
Their oars within the frith of Clyde. Jave steeled her brow and armed her eyes! There floated Haco's banner triin, No more of virgin terror speaks
Above Norweyan warriors grim, The blood that mantles in her cheeks;
Savage of heart, and large of limb; Fierce, and unfeminine, are there,
Threatening both continent and Isle, Frenzy for joy, for grief despair ;
Bute, Arran, Cunninghame, and Kyle. And I the cause-for whom were given
Lord Gifford, deep beneath the ground, Her peace on earth, her hopes in heaven!
Heard Alexander's bugle sound,
And tarried not his garb to change,
To that old camp's deserted round: But, in his wizard habit strange,
Sir Knight, you well might mark the mound, Came forth, a quaint and fearful sight!
Left hand the town, the Pictish race His mantle lined with fox-skins white;
The trench, long since, in blood did trace: His high and wrinkled forehead bore
The moor around is brown and bare, A pointed cap, such as of yore
The space within is green and fair. Clerks say that Pharaoh's Magi wore;
The spot our village children know, His shoes were marked with cross and spell; For there the earliest wild flowers grow; Upon his breast a pentacle;
But woe betide the wandering wight, Hlis zone, of virgin parchment thin,
That treads its circle in the night! Or, as some tell, of dead man's skin,
The breadth across, a bowshot clear, Before many a planetary sign,
Gives ample space for full career; Combust, and retrogade, and trine;
Opposed to the four points of heaven, And in his hand he held prepared,
By four deep gaps are entrance given. A naked sword, without a guard.
The southernmost our monarch past,
Halted, and blew a gallant blast;
And on the north, within the ring,
Appeared the form of England's king " Dire dealings with the fiendish race
Who then, a thousand leagues afar,
81 Had marked strange lines upon his face;
In Palestine waged holy war: Vigil and fast had worn him grim,
Yet arms like England's did he wiela. His eyesight dazzled seemed, and dim,
Alike the leopards in the shield, As one unused to upper day;
Alike his Syrian courser's frame, Even his own menials with dismay
The rider's length of limb the same Beheld, Sir Knight, the griesly sire,
Long afterwards did Scotland know,
Fell Edward* was her deadliest foe.
"The vision made our monarch start, "I know the cause, although untold,
But soon he mann'd his noble heart, Why the king seeks his vassals liold:
And in the first career they ran, Vainly from me my liege would know
The Elfin Knight fell, horse and man; His kingdom's future weal or woe;
Yet did a splinter of his lance But yet, If strong his arm and heart,
Through Alexander's visor glance, His courage may do more than art.
And razed the skin-a puny wound.
The king, light leaping to the ground,
With naked blade his phantom foe "Of middle air the demons prond,
Compelled the future war to show on
Of Largs he saw the glorious plain,
Where stili gigantic bones remain,
Memorial of the Danish war:
Himself he saw, amid the fiela,
On high his brandished war-axe wield, Save when by mightier furce controlled.
And strike proud Haco from his car, Such late I summoned to my hall;
While, all around our shadowy king. And though so potent was the call,
Denmark's grim ravens cower'd their wings. That scarce the deepest nook of hell
'Tis said, that in that awful night, I deemed a refuge from the spell, Yet, obstinate in silence still,
Remoter visions met his sight,
Foreshowing future conquests far,
When our sons' sons wage northern war;
A royal city, tower, and spire,
Reddened the midnight sky with fire;
And shouting crews her navy bore,
Triumphant, to the victor shore.
Such signs may learned clerks explain, Response denied to magic spell
They pass the wit of simple swain.
- The joyful king turned home again, The demon shall a buffet bide."
Headed his host, and quelled the Dane; His bearing bold the wizard viewed,
But yearly, when returned the night And thus, well pleased, his speech renewed.
Of his strange combat with the sprite, " There spoke the blood of Malcolm!--mark!
His wound must bleed and smart; Forth pacing hence, at midnight dark,
Lord Gifford then would gibing say, The rampart seek, whose circling crown
" Bold as ye were, my liege, ye pay Crests the ascent of yonder down:
The penance of your start. A southern entrance shalt thou find;
Long since, beneath Dunfermline's nave, There halt, and there thy bugle wind.
King Alexander fills his grave, And trust thine elfin foe to see,
Our Lady give him rest! In guise of thy worst enemy:
Yet still the nightly spear and shield Couch then thy lance, and spur thy steed
The eltin warrior doth wield, Upon him! and Saint George to speed!
Upon the brown hill's breast : If he go down, thou soon shalt know,
And many a knight hath proved his chance, Whate'er these airy sprites can show;
In the charmed ring to break a lance, If thy heart fail thee in the strife,
But all have foully sped: o warrant for thy life."
Save two, as legends tell, and they
Were Wallace wight and Gilbert Hay.
Gentles, my tale is said."
* Edward I, surnamed Longshanks.
Should, stirred by idle tale, The quaighs* were deep, the liquors strong,
| Ride forth in silence of the night, And on the tale the yeoman throng
As hoping half to meet a sprite, Had made a comment sage and long,
Arrayed in plate and mail. But Marmion gave a sign;
For little did Fitz-Eustace know And, with their lord, the squires retire ;
That passions, in contending filow, The rest, around the hostel fire,
Unfix the strongest mind; Their drowsy limbs recline ;
Wearied from doubt to doubt to flee, For pillow, underneath each head,
We welcome fond credulity,
Guide confident, though blind.
Little for this Fitz-Eustace cared, Threw on the group its shadows strange.
But, patient, waited till he heard,
At distance, pricked to utmost speed,
The foot-tramp of a flying steed,
Come townward rushing on: Of a waste loft, Fitz-Eustace lay;
First, dead, as if on turf it trode, Scarce, by the pale moonlight, was seen
Then, clattering on the village road, The foldings of his mantle green:
In other pace than forth he yode* Lightly he dreamt, as youth will dream,
Returned Lord Marmion. Of sport by thicket, or by stream,
Down hastily he spring from selle, Of hawk or hound, of ring or glove,
And, in his haste, well-nigh he fell; Or lighter yet, of lady's love.
To the squire's hand the rein he threw, A cautious tread his slumber broke,
And spoke no word as he withdrew: And, close beside him, when he woke,
But yet the moonlight did betray, In moonbeam half, and half in gloom,
The falcon crest was soiled with clay; Stood a tall form, with nodding plume;
And plainly might Fitz-Eustace see, But, ere his dagger Eustace drew,
By stains upon the charger's knee, His master Marmion's voice he knew.
And his left side, that on the moor
He had not kept his footing sure.
Long musing on these wondrous signs, " Fitz-Eustace! rise,- I cannot rest;
At length to rest the squire reclines, Yon churl's wild legend haunts my breast,
Broken and short ; for still, between, And graver thoughts have chafed my nood;
Would dreams of terror intervene: The air must cool my feverish blood;
Eustace did ne'er so blithely mark
The first notes of the morning lark.
INTRODUCTION TO CANTO FOURTII.
TO JAMES SKENE, ESQ.
Ashestiel, Ettricke Forest. Eustace the stable-door undid,
An ancient minstrel sagely said, And, darkling, Marmion's steed arrayed,
" Where is the life which late we led?"While, whispering, thus the Baron said:
That motley clown in Arden wood,
Whom humorous Jaques with envy vicwed, XXIX.
Not even that clown could amplify “Didst never, good my youth, hear tell,
On this trite text so long as I. That on the hour when I was born,
Eleven years we now may tell, St. George, who grac'd my sire's chapelle,
Since we have known each other well; Down from his steed of marble fell,
Since, riding side by side, our hand A weary weight forlorn ?
First drew the voluntary brand; The flattering chaplains all agree,
And sure, through many a varied scene, The champion left his steed to me.
Unkindness never came between. I would, the omen's truth to show,
Away these winged years have flown That I could meet this Elfin Foe!
To join the mass of ages gone; Blithe would I battle for the right
And though deep marked, like all below, To ask one question at the sprite :-
With chequered shades of joy and woe; Vain thought! for elves, if élves there be,
Though thou o'er realms and seas hast ranged, An empty race, by fount or sea,
Marked cities lost and empires changed, To dashing waters dance and sing,
While here, at home, my narrower ken Or round the green oak wheel their ring."
Somewhat of manners saw, and men ; Thus speaking, he his steel bestrode,
Though varying wishes, hopes, and fears, And from the hostel slowly rode.
Fevered the progress of these years,
Yet now days, weeks, and months, but seem
The recollection of a dream; Fitz-Eustace followed him abroad,
So still we glide down to the sea
Of fathomless eternity.
Even now it scarcely seems a day
Since first I tuned this idle lay; Lord Marmion sought the round.
A task so often thrown aside Wonder it seemed, in the squire's eyes,
When leisure graver cares denied, That one so wary held, and wise,
That now November's dreary gale, Of whom 'twas said, he scarce received
Whose voice inspired my opening tale, For gospel what the church believed, --
That same November gale once more
Whirls the dry leaves on Yarrow's shore ; * A wooden cup, composed of staves hooped together.
* Used by old poets for rent.
to whoappe theasure ce each arms
Their vex'd boughs streaming to the sky, | But Grecian fires, and loud alarms,
Called ancient Priam forth to arms.
His share of pleasure, share of pain-
Then happy those, beloved of Heaven, Bid us forsake the banks of Tweed.
To whom the mingled cup is given; Earlier than wont, along the sky,
Whose lenient sorrows find relief, Mixed with the rack, the snow mists fly;
Whose joys are chastened by their grief, The shepherd, who, in summer sun,
And such a lot, my Skene, was thine, Has something of our envy won,
When thou of late were doomed to twine,As thou with pencil, I with pen,
Just when thy bridal hour was by,-The features traced of hill and glen;
The cypress with the myrtle tie; He who, outstretched, the live-long day,
Just on thy bride her sire had smiled, At ease among the heath-flowers lay;
And blessed the union of his child. Viewed the light clouds with vacant look, When love must change its joyous cheer, Or slumbered o'er his tattered book,
And wipe affection's filial tear. Or idly busied him to guide
Nor did the actions, next his end, His angle o'er the lessened tide;
Speak more the father than the friend : At midnight now the snowy plain
Scarce had lamented Forbes paid Finds sterner labour for the swain.
The tribute to his Minstrel's shade;
The tale of friendship scarce was told, When red hath set the beamless sun
Ere the narrator's heart was cold. Through heavy vapours dank and dun:
Far may we search before we find When the tired ploughman, dry and warm,
A heart so manly and so kind. Hears, half asleep, the rising storm
But not around his honour'd urn Hurling the hail and sleeted rain
Shall friends alone and kindred mourn; Against the casement's tinkling pane;
The thousand eyes his care had dried, The sounds that drive wild deer and fox
'Pour at his naine a bitter tide; To shelter in the brake and rocks,
And frequent falls the grateful dew, Are warnings which the shepherd ask
For benefits the world ne'er knew. To dismal and to dangerous task.
If mortal charity dare claim Oft he looks forth, and hopes in vain,
The Almighty's attributed name, The blast may sink in mellowing rain;
Inscribe above hi, mouldering clay, Till, dark above and white below,
“The widow's shield, the orphan's stay." Decided drives the flaky snow,
Xor, though it wake thy sorrow, dceni And forth the hardy swain must go.
My verse intrudes on this sad theme; Long, with dejected look and whine,
For sacred was the pen that wrote, To leave the hearth his dogs repine;
"Thy father's friend forgot thou not." Whistling and cheering them to aid,
and grateful title may I plead, Around his back he wreathes the plaid.
For many a kindly word and deed, His flock he gathers, and he guides
To bring my tribute to his grave: To open downs and mountain sides
'Tis little-but 'tis all I have. Where fiercest though the tempest blow, Least deeply lies the drift below.
To thee, perchance, this rambling strain The blast that whistles o'er the fells,
Recalls our sunmer walks again; Stiffens his locks to icicles;
When doing nought,--and, to speak true, Oft he looks back, while streaming far,
Not anxious to find aught to do.-His cottage window seems a star,
The wild unbounded hills we ranged, Loses his feeble gleam, and then
While oft our talk its topic changed, Turns patient to the blast again,
And desultory, as our way, And, facing to the tempest's sweep,
Ranged unconfined from grave to gay. Drives through the gloom his lagging sheep. Even when it flagged, as oft will chance, If fails his heart, if his liinbs fail,
No effort made to break its trance, Benumbing death is in the gale;
We could right pleasantly pursue His path, his landınarks, all unknown,
Our sports in social silence too; Close to the hut, no more his own,
Thou gravely labouring to portray Close to the aid he sought in vain,
The blighted oak's fantastic spray; The morn may find the stiffened swain:
I spelling o'er, with much delight, His widow sees, at dawning pale,
The legend of that antique knight, His orphans raise their feeble wail;
Tirante by name, ycleped the White. And close beside him in the snow
At either's feet a trusty squire, Poor Yarrow, partner of their woe,
Pandour and Camp, with eyes of fire, Couches upon his master's breast,
Jealous, each other's motions viewed, And licks his cheek to break his rest.
And scarce suppressed their ancient feud. Who envies now the shepherd's lot,
The laverock whistled from the clouds :
The stream was lively, but not lond;
From the whitethorn the May-flower shed His rustic kirn's* loud revelry,
Its dewy fragrance round on head:
Not Ariel lived inore merrily
Under the blossomed bough, than we.
And blithesome nights, too, have been ours, And all Arcadia's golden creed?
When winter stript the summer's bowers;
('areless we heard, what now I hear, Changes not so with us, my Skene,
Ehe wild blast sighing deep and drear. Of human life the varying scene?
When fires were bright, and lamps beamed gay, Our youthful summer oft we see
And ladies tuned the lovely lay; Dance by on wings of game and glee,
And he was held a laggard soul While the dark storm reserves its rage
Who shunn'd to quaff the sparkling bowl. Against the winter of our age:
Then he, whose absence we deplore, As he, the ancient chief of Troy,
Who breathes the gales of Devon's shore, His manhood spent in peace and joy:
The longer missed, bewailed the more;
And thon, and I, and dear-loved R* The Scottish harvest-home.
And one whose name I may not say,
Caloour and et uz clepede knight