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THE

With serf and page unfit for war,
To eye the conflict from afar.
O! with what doubtful agony
She sees the dawning tint the sky ! -
Now on the Ochils gleams the sun,
And glistens now Demayet dun;
Is it the lark that carols shrill,

Is it the bittern's early hum?
No !-distant, but increasing still,

The trumpet's sound swells up the hill,
. With the deep murmur of the drum.
Responsive from the Scottish host,
Pipe-clang and bugle-sound were toss’d,
His breast and brow each soldier cross'd, : ,

And started from the ground; Arm’d and array'd for instant fight, Rose archer, spearman, squire and knight, And in the pomp of battle bright

The dread batlalia frown'd.

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Now onward, and in open view,
The countless ranks of England drew,

Dark rolling like the ocean-tide,
When the rough west hath chafed his pride,
And bis deep roar sends challenge wide

To all that bars his way!
In front the gallant archers trode,
The men-at-arms behind them rode,
And midmost of the phalanx broad

The Monarch held his sway.
Beside him many a war-horse fumes,
Around him waves a sea of plumes,
Where many a knight in battle known,
And some who spurs had first braced on,
And deem'd that fight should see them won,
· King Edward's hests obey.
De Argentine attends his side,
With stout De Valence, Pembroke's pride,

Selected champions from the train,
To wait upon his bridle-rein.
Upon the Scottish foe he gazed-
-At once, before his sight amazed,

Sunk banner, spear, and shield;
Each weapon-point is downward sent,
Each warrior to the ground is bent.
6. The rebels, Argentine, repent !

For pardon they have kneelid.”-
“ Aye !—but they bend to other powers,
And other pardon sue than ours !
See where yon bare-foot Abbot stands,
And blesses them with lifted hands!
Upon the spot where they have kneeld,
These men will die, or win the field.”-
-" Then prove we if they die or win!
Bid Gloster's Earl the fight begin.”-

XXII. Earl Gilbert waved his truncheon high,

Just as the Northern ranks arose,

Signal for England's archery

To halt and bend their bows.
Then stepp'd each yeoman forth a pace,
Glanced at the intervening space,

And raised his left hand high; To the right ear the cords they bring-- At once ten thousand bow-strings ring,

Ten thousand arrows fly! Nor paused on the devoted Scot The ceaseless fury of their shot ;

As fiercely and as fast, Forth whistling came the grey-goose wing, As the wild hail-stones pelt and ring

Adown December's blast. Nor mountain targe of tough bull-hide, Nor lowland mail, that storm may bide ; Woe, woe to Scotland's banner'd pride,

If the fell shower may last ! Upon the right, behind the wood, Each by his steed dismounted, stood

The Scottish chivalry ;

-With foot in stirrup, hand on mane,

Fierce Edward Bruce can scarce restrain
His own keen heart, his eager train,
Until the archers gain'd the plain;

Then, “ Mount, ye gallants free !" He cried; and, vaulting from the ground, His saddle every horseman found.

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On high their glittering crests they toss,
As springs the wild-fire from the moss;
The shield hangs down on every breast,
Each ready lance is in the rest,

And loud shouts Edward Bruce,
6 Forth, Marshal, on the peasant foe!
We'll tame the terrors of their bow,

And cut the bow-string loose !"

XXIII. Then spurs were dash'd in chargers' flanks, They rush'd among the archer ranks.

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