ページの画像
PDF

O fear not the priest, who sleepeth to the east !

For to Dryburgh the way he has ta'en;
And there to say mass, till three days do pass,

For the soul of a knight that is slayne.'
He turned him around, and grimly he frowned;

Then he laughed right scornfully-
He who says the mass-rite for the soul of that knight,

May as well say mass for me.
At the lone midnight hour, when bad spirits have power,

In thy chamber will I be.'-
With that he was gone, and my lady left alone,

And no more did I see."

Then changed, I trow, was that bold Baron's brow,

From the dark to the blood-red high; Now, tell me the mien of the knight thou hast seen,

For, by Mary, he shall die!"
“His arms shone full bright, in the beacon's red light;

His plume it was scarlet and blue;
On his shield was a hound, in a silver leash bound,

And his crest was a branch of the yew.

“Thou liest, thou liest, thou little foot-page,

Loud dost thou lie to me!
For that knight is cold, and low laid in the mould,

All under the Eildon-tree.”
Yet hear but my word, my noble lord !

For I heard her name his name;
And that lady bright, she called the knight,

Sir Richard of Coldinghame."
The bold Baron's brow then changed, I trow,

From high blood-red to pale-
“The grave is deep and dark-and the corpse is stiff

and stark-
So I may not trust thy tale.
Where fair Tweed flows round holy Melrose,

And Eildon slopes to the plain,
Full three nights ago, by some secret foe,

The gay gallant was slain.
The varying light deceived thy sight,

And the wild winds drowned the name;
For the Dryburgh bells ring, and the white monks do sing,

For Sir Richard of Coldinghame!”

He passed the court-gate, and he oped the tower grate,

And he mounted the narrow stair To the bartizan-seat, where, with maids that on her wait,

He found his lady fair.

That lady sat in mournful mood;

Looked over hill and vale ;
Over Tweed's fair flood, and' Mertouu's wood,

And all down Teviotdale.

“Now hail, now hail, thou lady bright!”

“Now hail, thou Baron true! What news, what news, from Ancram fight?

What news from the bold Buccleuch ?

“The Ancram moor is red with gore,

For many a Southron fell;
And Buccleuch has charged us, evermore

To watch our beacons well.”
The lady blushed red, but nothing she said ;

Nor added the Baron a word :
Then she stepped down the stair to her chamber fair,

And so did her moody lord.
In sleep the lady mourned, and the Baron tossed and turned,

And oft to himself he said“ The worms around him creep, and his bloody grave is

deep ...
It cannot give up the dead !"
It was near the ringing of matin-bell,

The night was well-nigh done,
When a heavy sleep on that Baron fel,

On the eve of good St. John.
The lady looked through the chamber fair,

By the light of a dying flame;
And she was aware of a knight stood there

Sir Richard of Coldinghame!

[ocr errors]

By Eildon-tree, for long nights three,

In bloody grave have I lain;
The mass and the death-prayer are said for me,---

But, lady, they are said in vain.
By the Baron's brand near Tweed's fair strand,

Most foully slain I fell;
And my restless sprite on the beacon's height

For a space is doomed to dwell.

At our trysting-place, for a certain space,

I must wander to and fro;
But I had not had power to come to thy bower,

Hadst thou not conjured me so.”

Love mastered fear-her brow she crossed ;

“How, Richard, hast thou sped } And art thou saved, or art thou lost ?"

The Vision shook his head !

“Who spilleth life, shall forfeit life,

So bid thy lord believe:
That lawless love is guilt above,

This awful sign receive."

IIe laid his left palm on an oaken beam;

His right upon her hand :
The lady shrunk, and fainting sunk,

For it scorched like a fiery brand.

The sable score, of fingers four,

Remains on that board impressed;
And for evermore that lady wore

A covering on her wrist.

There is a Nun in Dryburgh bower,

Ne'er looks upon the sun :
There is a Monk in Melrose tower,

He speaketh word to none.

That Nun, who ne'er beholds the day,

That Monk, who speaks to none-
That Nun was Smaylho'me's Lady gay,

That Monk the bold Baron.

CADYOW CASTLE.

ADDRESSED TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE LADY ANNE HAMILTON.

The ruins of Cadyow, or Cadzow Castle, the ancient baronial residence of the family of Hamilton, are situated upon the precipitous banks of the river Evan, about two miles above its junction with the Clyde. The situation of the ruins, embosomed in wood, darkened by ivy and creeping shrubs, and overhanging the brawling torrent, is romantic in the highest degree In the immediate vicinity of Cadyow is a grove of immense oaks, the re. mains of the Caledonian Forest, which anciently extended through the south of Scotland, from the Eastern to the Atlantic Ocean. Some of these trees measure twenty-five feet, and upwards, in circuinference; and the state of decay, in which they now appear, shows that they may have witnessed the rites of the Druids. The whole scenery is included in the magnificent and extensive park of the Duke of Hamilton. In this forest was long preserved the breed of the Scottish wild cattle, until their ferocity led to their extirpation, about forty years ago. Their appearance was beau. tiful, being milk-white, with black muzzles, horns, and hoofs. The bulls are described by ancient authors as having white manes; but those of latter days had lost that peculiarity, perhaps by intermixture with the tame breed.

WHEN princely Hamilton's abode

Ennobled Cadyow's Gothic towers,
The song went round, the goblet flowed,

And revel sped the laughing hours.

Then, thrilling to the harp's gay sound,

So sweetly rung each vaulted wall,
And echoed light the dancer's bound,

As mirth and music cheered the hall,

[ocr errors]

Yet still, of Cadyow's faded fame,

You bid me tell a minstrel tale,
And tune my harp, of Border frame,

On the wild banks of Evandale.

For thou, from scenes of courtly pride,

From pleasure's lighter scenes, canst turn,
To draw oblivion's pall aside,

And mark the long-forgotten urn.

Then, noble maid ! at thy command,

Again the crumbled halls shall rise,
Lo ! as on Evan's banks we stand,

The past returns—the present flies.

Where with the rock's wood-covered side

Were blended late the ruins green,
Rise turrets in fantastic pride,

And feudal banners flaunt between:

Where the rude torrent's brawling course

Was shagged with thorn and tangling sloe,
The ashler buttress braves its force,

And ramparts frown in battled row.

'Tis night-the shade of keep and spire

Obscurely dance on Evan's stream,
And on the wave the warder's fire

Is chequering the moonlight beam.

Fades slow their light; the east is grey;

The weary warder leaves his tower;
Steeds snort ; uncoupled stag-hounds bay,

And merry hunters quit the bower.

The drawbridge falls—they hurry out

Clatters each plank and swinging chain, As dashing o'er, the jovial rout

Urge the shy steed, and slack the rein. First of his troop, the chief rode on;

His shouting merry-men throng behind; The steed of princely Hamilton Was ieeter than the mountain wind.

From the thick copse the roebucks bound,

The startling red-deer scuds the plain, For the hoarse bugle's warrior sound

Has roused their mountain haunts again. Through the huge oaks of Evandale,

Whose limbs a thousand years have worn, What sullen roar comes down the gale,

And drowns the hunter's pealing horn ? Mightiest of all the beasts of chase

That roam in woody Caledon, Crashing the forest in his race,

The Nountain Bull comes thundering on. Fierce, on the hunters' quivered band,

He rolls his eyes of swarthy glow, Spurns, with black hoof and horn, the sand,

And tosses high bis mane of snow.

Aimed well, the chieftain's lance has flown;

Struggling in blood the savage lies; His roar is sunk in hollow groan

Sound, merry huntsmen ! sound the pryse i

'Tis noon-against the knotted oak

The hunters rest the idle spear; Curls through the trees the slender smoke,

Where yeomen dight the woodland cheer.

Proudly the chieftain marked his clan,

On greenwood lap all careless thrown, Yet missed his eye the boldest man

That bore the name of Hamilton,

“Why fills not Both wellhaugh his place,

Still wont our woe and weal to share ? Why comes he not our sport to grace ?

Why shares he not our hunter's fare ?"

Stern Claud replied, with darkening face,

(Grey Pasley's haughty lord was her) At merry feast, or buxom chase,

No more the warrior shalt thou see.

« 前へ次へ »