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THE

LORD OF THE ISLES.

CANTO FOURTH.

STRANGER! if e'er thine ardent step hath traced

The northern realms of ancient Caledon, Where the proud Queen of Wilderness hath placed,

By lake and cataract, her lonely throne; Sublime but sad delight thy soul hath known,

Gazing on pathless glen and mountain high, Listing where from the cliffs the torrents thrown

Mingle their echoes with the eagle's cry, And with the sounding lake, and with the moaning sky. Yes ! 'twas sublime, but sad.-The loneliness

Loaded thy heart, the desert tired thine eye; And strange and awful fears began to press

Thy bosom with a stern solemnity. Then hast thou wish'd some woodman's cottage nigh,

Something that show'd of life, though low and mean; Glad sight, its curling wreath of smoke to spy,

Glad sound, its cock's blithe carol would have been, Or children whooping wild beneath the willows green.

Such are the scenes, where savage grandeur wakes

An awful thrill that softens into sighs;
Such feelings rouse them by dim Rannoch's lakes,

In dark Glencoe such gloomy raptures rise :
Or farther, where, beneath the northern skies,

Chides wild Loch-Eribol his caverns hoar-
But, be the minstrel judge, they yield the prize

Of desert dignity to that dread shore,
That sees grim Coolin rise, and hears Corisken roar.

II.

Through such wild scenes the champions pass'd,
When bold halloo, and bugle-blast
Upon the breeze came loud and fast.
“ There,” said The Bruce,“ rung Edward's horn!
What can have caused such brief return ?
And see, brave Ronald,-see him dart
O’er stock and stone like hunted hart,
Precipitate, as is the use,
In war or sport, of Edward Bruce.

He marks us, and his eager cry
Will tell his news ere he be nigh."-

III.

Loud Edward shouts, “ What make ye here,
Warring upon the mountain deer,

When Scotland wants her King ?
A bark from Lennox cross'd our track,
With her in speed I hurried back,

These joyful news to bring

The Stuart stirs in Teviotdale,
And Douglas wakes his native vale,
Thy storm-toss'd fleet hath won its way
With little loss to Brodick-Bay,
And Lennox, with a gallant band,
Waits but thy coming and command
To waft them o'er to Carrick strand.
There are blithe news! but mark the close!
Edward, the deadliest of our foes,
As with his host he northward pass'd,
Hath on the Borders breath'd his last.”.

IV.

Still stood The Bruce-his steady cheek
Was little wont his joy to speak,

But then his colour rose :
« Now, Scotland ! shortly shalt thou see,
With God's high will, thy children free,

And vengeance on thy foes !

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Yet to no sense of selfish wrongs,
Bear witness with me Heaven, belongs

My joy o'er Edward's bier ;
I took my knighthood at his hand,
And lordship held of him, and land,

And well may vouch it here,
That, blot the story from his page,
of Scotland ruin'd in his rage,
You read a monarch brave and sage,

And to his people dear."-
“ Let London's burghers mourn her Lord,
And Croydon monks his praise record,”
The
eager

Edward said ; “ Eternal as his own, my hate Surmounts the bounds of mortal fate,

And dies not with the dead ! Such hate was his on Solway's strand, When vengeance clench'd his palsied hand, That pointed yet to Scotland's land,

As his last accents pray'd

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