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Eluded, now behind him die,
Nor boasted, from their tinge when free,
VI. Well Risingham young Redmond knew; And much he marvell'd that the crew, Roused to revenge bold Mortham dead, Were by that Mortham's foemen led; For never felt his soul the woe, That wails a generous foeman low, Far less that sense of justice strong, That wreaks a generous foeman's wrong. But small his leisure now to pause: Redmond is first, whate'er the cause, And twice that Redmond came so near, Where Bertram couch'd like bunted deer, The very boughs his steps displace, Rustled against the ruffian's face, Who, desperate, twice prepared to start, And plunge his dayger in his heart! But Redmond turn'd a different way, And the bent boughs resumed their sway, And Bertram held it wise, unseen, Deeper to plunge in coppice green. Thus, circled in his coil, the snake, When roving hunters beat the brake, Watches with red and glistening eye, Prepared, if heedless step draw nigh, With forked tongue and venom'd fang Instant to dart the deadly pang; But if the intruders turn aside, Away his coils unfolded glide, And through the deep savannah wind, Some undisturb'd retreat to find.
VII. But Bertram, as he backward drew, And heard the loud pursuit renew, And Redmond's hollo on the wind, Oft mutter'd in his savage mind« Redmond O'Neale! were thou and I Alone this day's event to try, With not a second here to see, But the gray cliff and oaken-tree, That voice of thine, that shouts so lond, Should ne'er repeat its 'summons proud! Na! nor e'er try its melung power Again in maiden's summer bower.»--
IX. In sullen mood he lay reclined, Revolving, in his stormy mind, The felon deed, the fruitless guilt, His patron's blood by treason spilt; A crime, it seemd, so dire and dread, That it had power to wake the dead. Then pondering on his life betray'd By Oswald's art to Redmond's blade, In treach'rous purpose to withhold, So seem'd it, Mortham's promised gold, A deep and full revenge he vow'd On Redmond, forward, fierce, and proud; Revenge on Wilfrid-on his sire Redoubled vengeance, swift and dire!If, in such mood (as legends say, And well believed that simple day), The enemy of man has power To profit by the evil hour, Here stood a wretch, prepared to change His soul's redemption for revenge!(5) But though his vows, with such a fire Of earnest and intense desire
For vengeance dark and fell, were made,
Oft mingled with the direful theme,
Guy Denzil !—is it thou ?» he said;
-« Speak thy purpose out; I love not mystery or doubt.»—
XII. « Then list.-Not far there lurk a crew, Of trusty comrades staunch and true, Glean'd from both factions-Roundheads, freed From cant of sermon and of creed; And cavaliers, whose souls, like mine, Spurn at the bonds of discipline. Wiser we judge, by dalc and wold, A warfare of our own to hold,
Than breathe our last on battle-down,
And Greta woods are green;
Than reign our English queen.
And by your palfrey good,
To keep the king's green-wood.»— « A ranger, lady, winds his horn,
And 't is at peep of light;
And mine at dead of night.»
And Blasphemy, to frenzy drin,
Yet sung she, « Brignal banks are fair,
And Greta woods are gay;
To reign his queen of May!
« With burnish'd brand and musquetoon,,
So gallantly you come,
That lists the tuck of drum.»-
No more the trumpet hear;
My comrades take the spear.
« And O! though Brignal banks be fair,
And Greta woods be gay,
Would reigo my queen of May !
XVIII. « Maiden! a nameless life I lead,
A nameless death I'll die; The fiend whose lantern lights the mead
Were better mate than I ! And when I'm with my comrades mét,
Beneath the green-wood boogh, What once we were we forget,
Nor think what we are now.
CHORUS. « Yet Brignal banks are fresh and fair,
And Greta woods are green, And
you may gather garlands there, Would grace a summer queen.»
«O, Brignal banks are fresh and fair,
And Greta'woods are green; :I 'd rather rove with Edmund there,
Than reign our Englisla queen.»--
« If, maiden, thou wouldst wend with me,
To leave both tower and town, Thou first must guess what life lead we,
That dwell by dale and down. And if thou canst that riddle read,
As read full well you may, Then to the green-wood shalt thou speed,
As bliilie as queen of May.»-
When Edmund ceased his simple song,
And our stout night, at dawn of morn,
XIX. At length his wond'rous tale he told, When scornful smiled his comrade bold; For, train'd in license of a court, Religion's self was Denzil's sport; Then judge in what contempe he held The visionary tales of cld ! His awe for Bertram scarce repress'd The unbeliever's sneering jest. « 'T were hard,» he said, « for sage or seer To spell the subject of your fear; Nor do I boast the art renown'd, Vision and omeg to expound. Yet, faith if I must needs afford To spectre watching treasured hoard, As ban-dog keeps his master's roof, Bidding the plunderer stand aloof, This doubt remains—thy goblin gaunt Hath chosen ill his ghostly haunt; For why his guard on Mortham bold, When Rokeby Castle hath the gold Thy patron won on Indian soil, By stealth, by piracy, and spoil ?
XXII. « Destined to her! to yon slight maid! The prize my life had well nigh paid, When gainst Laroche, by Cayo's wave, I fought, my patron's wealth to save!Denzil, I knew him long, but ne'er Knew him that joyous cavalier, Whom youthful friends and early fame Calld soul of gallantry and game: A moody man he sought our crew, Desperate and dark, whom no one knew; And rose as men with us must rise, By scorning life and all its ties. On each adventure raslı he roved, As danger for itself he loved ; On his sad brow nor mirth nor wine Could e'er one wrinkled knot untwine; IlI was the omen if he smiled, For 't was in peril stern and wild ; But when he laugh d, each luckless mate Might hold our fortune desperate. •Foremost he fought in every broil, Then scornful turn'd liim from the spoil; Nay, often strove to lar the way Between his comrades aud their prey; Preaching, even then, lo such as we, llot with our dear-bouglit victory, Of mercy and humanity!
At this he paused-for angry
shame Lower'd on the brow of Risingham, He blushid to think that he should seem Assertor of an airy dream, And gave his wrath another theme. « Denzil,» he says, « though lowly laid, Wrong not the memory of the dead; For, while he lived, at Mortham's look, Thiy very soul, Guy Denzil, shook ! And when he tax'd thy breach of word Το yon fair Rose of Allenford, I saw thee crouch like chastend hound, Whose back the huntsman's lash hath found. Nor dare to call his foreign wealth The spoil of piracy or stealth ; Ile won it bravely with his brand, When Spain waged warfare with our land. (8) Mark too-I brook no idle jeer, Nor couple Bertram's name with fear; Minc is but half the demon's lot, For I believe, but tremble not. Enough of this.--Say, why this hoard Thou deem'st at Rokehy Castle stored ! Or think'st that Mortham would bestow His treasure with his faction's foe ?>
XXIII. « I loved him well- bis fearless part, His gallant leading, won my heart, And, after each victorious fight, 'T was I that wrangled for his right, Redeem'd his portion of the prey That greedier mates had torn away; In field and storm thrice saved his life, And once amid our comrades' strife.- (9) Yes, I have loved thee! well hath proved My toil, my dauger, how I loved ! Yet will I mourn no more thy falc, Ingrate in life, in death ingrate. Rise, if thou canst!»- he look'd around, And sternly stamp'd upon the ground« Rise, with thy bearing proud and high, Even as this morn it met mine eye, And give me, if thou darest, the lie!»He paused-then, calm and passion-freed, Bade Denzil with his tale
XXI. Soon quench'd was Denzil's ill-timed mirth; Rather he would have seen the earth Give to ten thousand spectres birth, Than ventured to awake to flame The deadly wrath of Risingham. Submiss he answer'd, --- Mortham's mind, Thou know'st, 10 joy was ill inclined. In youth, 't is said, a gallant free, A lusty reveller was he ; But since return'd from over sea, A sullen and a silent mood Hath numb'd the current of his blood. Hence he refused each kindly call, To Rokeby's liospitable hail,
XXIV. « Bertram, to thee I need not tell What thou hast cause to wot so well, How superstition's nets were twined Around the Lord of Mortham's mind;