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Oh! would it had been so! Not then this poor heart
Had learn'd the sad lesson, to love and to part;
To bear, unassisted, its burthen of care,
While I toil'd for the wealth I had no one to share.
Not then had I said, when life's summer was done,
And the hours of her autumn were fast speeding on,
* Take the fame and the riches ye brought in your train,
And restore me the dream of my spring-tide again!»
" In ancient Irish poetry, the standard of Fion, or Fingal, is called the Son-burst, an epithet feebly rendered by the Sun-beam of Macpherson.
But far more sadly sweet, on foreign strand, We list the legends of our native land, Link'd as they come with every tender tie, Memorials dear of youth and infancy.
Chief, thy wild tales, romantic Caledon,
Wake keen remembrance in each hardy son.
Whether on India's burning coasts he toil,
Or till Acadia's winter-fetter'd soil,
. Ile hears with throbbing heart and moisten’d eyes,
And as he hears, what dear illusions rise!
It opens on his soul his native dell,
The woods wild waving, and the water's swell:
Tradition's theme, the tower that threats the plain,
The mossy cairn that hides the hero slain;
The cot beneath whose simple porch were told,
By gray-haird patriarch, the tales of old,
The infant group that hush'd their sports the while,
And the dear maid who listen’d with a smile.
The wanderer, while the vision warms his brain,
Is denizen of Scotland once again.
Are such keen feelings to the crowd confined, And sleep they in the poet's gifted mind? Oh no! for she, within whose mighty page Each tyrant passion shows his woe and rage, Has felt the wizard influence they inspire, And to your own traditions tuned her lyre. Yourselves shall judge—whoe'er has raised the sail By Mull's dark coast has heard this evening's tale. The plaided boatman, resting on his oar, Points to the fatal rock amid the roar Of whitening waves, and tells whate'er to-night Our humble stage shall offer to your sight; Proudly preferr'd that first our efforts give Scenes glowing from her pen to breathe and live; More proudly yet, should Caledon approve The filial token of a daughter's love!
FAREweLL TO MACKENZIE,
high Chief of KiNtAIL.
Faoxi. The GAe Lic.
The original verses are arranged to a beautiful Gaelic air, of which the chorus is adapted to the double pull upon the oars of a galley, and which is therefore distinct from the ordinary jorrams, or boat-songs. They were composed by the family bard upon the departure of the Earl of Seaforth, who was obliged to take refuge in Spain, after an unsuccessful effort at insurrection in favour of the Stuart family, in the year 1718.
FAREwell to Mackenneth, great Earl of the North,
The Lord of Lochcarron, Glensheil, and Seaforth;
To the chieftain this morning his course who began,
Launching forth on the billows his bark like a swan.
For a far foreign land he has hoisted his sail,
Farewell to Mackenzie, High Chief of Kintail!
O swift be the galley, and hardy her crew,
May her captain be skilful, her mariners true,
* Acadia, or Nova Scotia.)
In danger undaunted, unwearied by toil,
Though the whirlwind should rise, and the ocean should
On the brave vessel's gunnel I drank his bonnail,'
And farewell to Mackenzie, High Chief of Kintail.
Awake in thy chamber, thou sweet southland gale!
Like the sighs of his people, breathe soft on his sail;
Be prolong'd as regret that his vassals must know,
Be fair as their faith, and sincere as their woe:
Be so soft, and so fair, and so faithful, sweet gale,
Wafting onward Mackenzie, High Chief of Kintail :
Be his pilot experienced, and trusty, and wise,
To measure the seas and to study the skies: -
May he hoist all his canvas from streamer to deck,
But O! crowd it higher when wafting him back—
Till the cliffs of Skooroora, and Conan's glad vale,
Shall welcome Mackenzie, High Chief of Kintail
iMITATION of The PREceding son G.
So sung the old Bard, in the grief of his heart,
When he saw his loved lord from his people depart.
Now mute on thy mountains, O Albyn, are heard
Nor the voice of the song, nor the harp of the bard;
Or its strings are but waked by the stern winter gale,
As they mourn for Mackenzie, last Chief of Kintail.
From the far southland border a minstrel came forth,
And he waited the hour that some bard of the north
His hand on the harp of the ancient should cast,
And bid its wild numbers mix high with the blast;
But no bard was there left in the land of the Gael,
To lament for Mackenzie, last Chief of Kintail.
And shalt thou then sleep, did the minstrel exclaim,
Like the son of the lowly, unnoticed by fame?
No, son of Fitzgerald ! in accents of woe,
The song thou hast loved o'er thy coffin shall flow,
And teach thy wild mountains to join in the wail,
That laments for Mackenzie, last Chief of Kintail,
In vain, the bright course of thy talents to wrong,
Fate deaden'd thine ear and imprison'd thy tongue;
For brighter o'er all her obstructions arose
The glow of the genius they could not oppose; -
And who in the land of the Saxon or Gael,
Might match with Mackenzie, High Chief of Kintail?
Thy sons rose around thee in light and in love, All a father could hope, all a friend could approve; what 'vails it the tale of thy sorrows to tell,— in the spring-time of youth and of promise they fell!
•] of the fine of Fitzgerald remains not a male,
To bear the proud name of the Chief of Kintail.
And thou, gentle dame, who must bear to thy grief, for thy clan and thy country, the cares of a chief,
1 Bonail’, or donaller, the old Scottish phrase for a feast at parting with a friend.