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The boiling eddy see him try,
AIR-Cha till mi tuille."
MACKRIMMON, hereditary piper to the Laird of Macleod, is said to have composed this lament when the clan was about to depart upon a distant and dangerous expedition. The minstrel was impressed with a belief, which the event verified, that lie was to be slain in the approaching feud; and tence the Gaelic words, « Cha till mi tuille; ged thillis Macleod, cha till Macrimmon, « I shall never return; although Macleod returns, yet Mackrimmon shall never return!» The piece is but too well known, from its being the strain with which the emigrants from the West Highlands and Isles usually take leave of their native shore.
'T is blithe along the midnight tide,
'T is blithe at eve to tell the tale,
MACLEOD'S wizard flag from the gray castle sallies,
THE SUN UPON THE WEIRDLAW-HILL.
AIR-Rimhin aluin 'stu mo run.
« Farewell the bright clouds that on Quillan are sleeping;
The air, composed by the Editor of Albyn's Anthology.
The words written for Mr George Thomson's Scottish Melodies.
« Too oft shall the notes of Mackrimmon's bewailing
Cha till, cha till, cha till sin tuille !
The sun upon the Weirdlaw-hill,
Io Etirick's vale, is sinking sweet ; The westland wind is hush and still,
The lake lies sleeping at my feet. Yet not the landscape to mine eye
Bears those bright hues that once it bore; Though evening, with her richest dye,
Flames o'er the hills of Ettrick's shore.
With listless look along the plain,
I see Tweed's silver current glide, And coldly mark the holy fane
Of Melrose rise in ruin'd pride. The quiet lake, the balmy air,
The hill, the stream, the tower, the tree, Are they still such as once they were,
Or is the dreary change in me?
ON ETTRICK FOREST'S MOUNTAINS DUN.
On Ettrick Forest's mountains dun,
Alas, the warp'd and broken board,
How can it bear the painter's dye! The harp of strain'd and tubeless chord,
How to the minstrel's skill reply! To aching eyes each landscape lowers,
To feverish pulse each gale blows chill; And Araby's or Eden's bowers
Were barren as this moorland hill.
Along the silver streams of Tweed,
1. We return no more..
• Written after a week's shooting and fishing, in which the poet had been engaged with some friends.
* Alwyn, the sent of the Lord Somerville, now, alas! untenanted, by the lamented death of that kind and hospitable nobleman, the author's nearest neighbour and intimate friend, · Ashestiel, the poet's residence at that time.
THE MAID OF ISLA.
AIR--The Maid of Isla. Written for Mr George Thomson's Scottish Melodies.
THE MONKS OF BANGOR'S MARCH.
Air-Ymdaith Mionge. Written for Mr George Thomson's Welch Melodies.
O MAID of Isla, from the cliff,
That looks on troubled wave and sky, Dost thou not see yon little skiff
Contend with ocean gallantly? Now beating 'gainst the breeze and surge,
And steep'd hier leeward deck in foam, Why does she war unequal urge?
O Isla's maid, she seeks her home.
Ethelrid, or Olfrid, king of Northumberland, having besieged Chester in 613, and Brockmael, a British prince, advancing to relieve it, the religious of the neighbouring monastery of Bangor marched in procession, to pray for the success of their countrymen. But the British being totally defeated, the heathen victor put the monks to the sword, aud destroyed their monastery. The tune to which these verses are adapted, is called the Monks' March, and is supposed to have been played at their ill-omened procession.
O Isla's maid, yon sea-bird mark,
Her white wine gleams through mist and spray, Against the storm-clad, louring dark,
As to the rock she wheels away ;Where clouds are dark and billows rave,
Why to the shelter should she come Of cliff, exposed to wind and wave?
O maid of Isla, 't is her home.
When the heathen trumpet's clang
O miserere, Domine !
As breeze and tide to yonder skiff,
Thou 'rt adverse to the suit I bring, And cold as is yon wintery cliff,
Where sea-birds close their wearied wing. Yet cold as rock, unkind as wave,
Still, Isla's maid, to thee I come; For in thy love, or in his grave,
Must Alan Vourich find his home.
On the long procession goes,
O miserere, Domine!
THE SEARCH AFTER HAPPINESS;
THE QUEST OF SULTAUN SOLIMAUN.
WRITTEN IN 1817.
That lighten'd on Bandello's laughing tale,
When Giam Battista bade her vision hail!! Yet fear not, ladies, the naïve detail
Given by the natives of that land canorous; Italian license loves to leap the pale,
We Britons have the fear of shame before us, And, if not wise in mirth, at least must be decorous.
Physicians soon arrived, sage, ware, and tried,
As e'er scrawld jargon in a darken'd room; With heedful glance the Sultaun's tongue they eyed, Peep'd in his bath, and God knows where beside,
And then in solemn accents spoke their doom, « His majesty is very far from well.» Then cach to work with his specific fell : The Hakim Ibrahim instanter brought His unguent Mahazzim al Zerdukkaut," While Roompot, a practitioner more wily, Relied on his Munaskif al fillfily. More and yet more in deep array appear, And some the front assail and some the rear: Their remedies to reinforce and vary, Came surgeon eke, and eke apothecary; Till the tired monarch, though of words grown chary, Yet dropt, to recompense their fruitless labour, Some hint about a bowstring or a sabre. There lack d, I promise you, no longer speeches, To rid the palace of those learned leechies.
In the far eastern clime, no great while since,
Theo was the council call'd-by their advice,
And sought to shift it off from their own shoulders),
Of feudatory chieftains and freeholdersSuch have the Persians at this very day, My gallant Malcolm calls them couroultai;? I'm not prepared to show in this slight song That to Serendib the same forms belong,Een let the learn'd go search, and tell me if I'm wrong.
This Solimaun, Serendib had in sway-
The Omrahs, each with hand on scymitar,
(Serendib-language calls a farmer Riot) Look'd ruefully in one another's faces,
From this oration auguring much disquiet, Double assessment, forage, and free quarters : And fearing these as China-men the Tartars, Or as the whisker'd vermin fear the mousers, Each fumbled in the pocket of his trowsers.
Serendib found, deem not my tale a fiction-
And next came forth the reverend Convocation,
Bald heads, white beards, and many a turban green, Imaum and Mollah there of every station,
Santon, Fakir, and Calendar were seen.
With fitting revenues should be erected,
For these hard words see d'Herbelot, or the learned editor of the Recipes of Avicenna.
· See Sir Jobn Malcolm's admirable History of Persia. 3 Nobility.
• The hint of the following tale is taken from La Camiscia Magica, a novel of Giam Batista Casti,
Others opined that through the realms a dole
Try we the Giaours, these men of coat and cap, I Be made to holy men, whose prayers might profit Incline to think some of them must be happy; The Sultaun's weal in body and in soul ;
At least they have as fair a cause as any can,
But fair Italia, she who once unfurld
Her eagle banners o'er a conquer'd world, And with beauty or tell o'er thy treasure ;
Long from her throne of domination tumbled, From all the cares of state, my liege, enlarge thee, Lay, by ber quondam vassals, sorely humbled; And leave the burthen to thy faithful clergy.»
The Pope himself look'd pensive, pale, and lean,
And was not half the man he once had been. These counsels sage availed not a whit,
« While these the priest and those the noble fleeces, And so the patient (as is not uncommon
Our poor old boot,»' they said, « is torn to pieces. Where grave physicians lose their time and wit) Its tops: the vengeful claws of Austria feel, Resolved to take advice of an old woman;
And the Great Devil is rending toe and lieel.3
A tramontane, a heretic, - the buck,
Poffaredio! still has all the luck ; But she profess'd to cure disease the sternest,
By land or ocean never strikes his flagBy dint of magie amulet or lay;
And ther--a perfect walking money-bag.” And, when all other skill in vain was shown,
Off set our prince to seek John Bull's abode, She deem'd it fitting time to use her own.
But first look France-it lay upon the road.
« Sympathia magica hath wonders done,»
Monsieur Baboou, after much late commotion, (Thus did old Fatima bespeak her son),
Was apitated like a selling ocean, « It works upon the fibres and the pores,
Quite out of sorts, and could not tell what ail'd him, And thus, insensibly, our health restores,
Only the glory of his house had fail'd him; And it must help us here.-Thou must endure Besides, some tumours on his noddle biding, The ill, my son, or travel for the cure,
Gave indication of a recent hiding.4 Search land and sea, and get, where'er you can, Our prince, though Sultauns of such things are heedThe inmost vesture of a happy man,
Jess, I mean his shirt, my son, which, taken warm
Thought it a thing indelicate and needless And fresh from off his back, shall chase your harm, To ask, if at that moment he was happy, Bid every current of your veins rejoice,
And Monsieur, secing that he was comme il faut, a And your dull heart leap light as shepherd-boy's.» Loud voice muster'd up, for « Vive le Roi!» Such was the counsel from his mother came.
Then whisperd, « Ave you any news of Nappy!» I know not if she had some under-game,
The Sultaun answerd him with a cross question, As doctors have, who bid their patients roam
« Pray, can you tell mc auglit of one John Bull, Apl live abroad, when sure to die at home ;
That dwells somewhere beyond your herring-pool ?» Or if she thought, that, somehow or another,
seem'd of difficult digestion, Queen Regent sounded better than Queen Mother; The party shrugg'd, and grinn'd, and took his souff, But, says the Chronicle (who will go look it?)
And found his whole good breeding scarce enough. That such was her advice the Sultaun took it.
Twitching his visage into as many puckers All are on board-the Sultaun and his train,
As damsels wont to put into their tuckers In gilded galley prompt to plough the main :
(Ere liberal Fashion damn'd both lace and lawn, The old Rais : was the first who question'd, «Whi- And bade the veil of modesty be drawn), ther?»
Replied the Frenchman, after a brief pause, They paused —« Arabia,» thought the pensive prince, « Jean Bool!-I vas not know him-yes, I vas« Was call'a The Happy many ages since
I vas remember dat von year or two, For Mokha, Rais. n-- And they came safely thither. I saw him at von place cail'd VaterlooBut not in Araby with all her balm,
Ma foi! il s'est très-joliment battu, Nor where Judæa weeps beneath her palm,
Dat is for Englishman,-m'entendez-vous ? Not in rich Egypt, not in Nubian waste,
But den he had wit him von damn son-gun, Could there the step of Happiness be traced.
Rogue I no like-dey call him Vellington.»
So Solimaun took leave and cross'd the streight.
1 The well-known resemblance of Italy in the map.
2 Florence, Venice, etc. Enough of turbans,» said the weary king, « These dolimans of ours are not the thing;
3 The Calabrias, infested by hands of assassins. One of the
leaders was called Fra Diavolo, i, e. Brother Devil. I Master of the vessel.
* Or drubbing, so called in the Slang dictionary.
John Bull was in his very worst of moods,
That when his mortal foe was on the floor,
And past the power to harm his quiet more, Poor John had well nigh wept for Bonaparte! Such was the wight whom Solimaun salam d, « And who are you,» John answer'd, « and be d-d ?»
She bade him a sit into the fire,» and took
Then up got Peg, and round the house 'gan scuttle,
In search of goods her customer to nail, Until the Sultaun strain'd his princely throttle,
And hollow'd, -« Ma'am, that is not what I ail. Pray, are you happy, ma'am, in this snug glen ?» « Happy!» said Pey; << What for d'
want to ken ? Besides, just think upon this by-gane year,
Grain wadna pay the yoking of the pleugh.» « What say you to the present?»—« Meal 's sae dear,
To mak their brose my bairns have scarce aneugh.» « The devil take the shirt,» said Solimaun, «I think my quest will end as it began. Farewell, ma'am; nay, no ceremony, I beg— » « Ye 'll no be for the linen then ?» said Peg.
« A stranger, come to see the happiest man,-
Happy! my tenants breaking on my hand ?
my leave; I came to ask a favour-hut I grieve--> « Favour?» said John, and eyed the Sultaun hard, « It's
you came to break the yard !-But, stay, you look like some poor foreign sinner, – Take that, to buy yourself a shirt and dinner.»— With that he chuck'd a guinea at his head; But, with due dignity, the Sultaun said, « Permit me, sir, your bounty to decline; A shirt indeed I seek, but none of thine. Seignior, I kiss your hands, so fare you well.» « Kiss and be d-d,» quoth John, « and go to hell!»
Now, for the land of verdant Erin,
Next door to John there dwelt his sister Peg,
And teeth, of yore, on slender provocation,
A quiet soul as any in the nation ; The sole remembrance of her warlike joys Was in old songs she sang to please her boys. John Bull, whom, in their years of early strife, She wont to lead a cat-and-doggish life, Now found the woman, as he said, a neighbour, Who look'd to the main chance, declined no labour, Loved a long grace, and spoke a northern jargon, And was d---d close in making of a bargain.
The Sultaun saw him on a holiday,
The Sultaun enter'd, and he made his leg,
Shilela their plan was well nigh after baulking