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Well fought the Southern in the fray,
Against an hundred foes.
Fresh combatants pour in;
And ward on ward they win.
And fearful was the din !
Nor sunk the fearful cry,
Till not a foeman was there found
Alive, save those who on the ground
The valiant Clifford is no more;
On Ronald's broadsword stream'd his gore.
And cut the cable loose.
Short were his shrift in that debate,
That hour of fury and of fate,
If Lorn encounter'd Bruce
Then long and loud the victor shout
The rugged vaults replied ;
Of silver, waving wide!
The Bruce hath won his father's hall !
- Welcome, brave friends and comrades all,
Welcome to mirth and joy!
To this poor speechless boy. Live
In tottering infancy!..
Echoed my joyous shout and bound
To youth's unthinking glee !
Yet steaming hot; with Southern gore
Bring here,” he said, “ the mazers four, My noble fathers loved of yore. Thrice let them circle round the board, The pledge, fair Scotland's rights restored ! And he whose lip shall touch the wine, Without a vow as true as mine, To hold both lands and life at nought, Until her freedom shall be bought,Be brand of a disloyal Scoty And lasting infamy his lot! Sit, gentle friends ! our hour of glee Is brief, we'll spend it joyously! Blithest of all the sun's bright beams, When betwixt storm and storm he gleams. Well is our country's work begun, But more, far
more, must yet be done !
Speed messengers the country through ;
Let Ettrick's archers sharp their darts,
The fairest forms, the truest hearts !
Call all, call all ! from Reedswair-path, To the wild confines of Cape-Wrath ; Wide let the news through Scotland ring, The Northern Eagle claps his wing !".
END OF CANTO FIFTH.