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When the broad sun sinks down on Ettrick's
Autumn departs—from Gala’s fields' no more Come rural sounds our kindred banks to cheer; Blent with the stream, and gale that wafts it
o'er, No more the distant reaper's mirth we hear. The last blithe shout hath died upon our ear, And harvest-home hath hush'd the clanging
wain, On the waste hill no forms of life appear,
Save where, sad laggard of the autumnal train, Some age-struck wanderer gleans few ears of
Deem'st thou these sadden'd scenes have plea
sure still, Lovest thou through Autumn’s fading realms to
stain, On the waste fields to trace the gleaner's way,
[The river Gala, famous in song, flows into the Tweed a few hundred yards below Abbotsford ; but probably the word Gala here stands for the poet's neighbour and kinsman, and much attached friend, John Scott, Esq. of Gala.]
And moralize on mortal joy and pain ?0! if such scenes thou lovest, scorn not the
No! do not scorn, although its hoarser note Scarce with the cushat's homely song can vie, Though faint its beauties as the tints remote That gleam through mist in autumn's evening
sky, And few as leaves that tremble, sear and dry, When wild November hath his bugle wound; Nor mock my toil—a lonely gleaner 1,1 Through fields time-wasted, on sad inquest
bound, Where happier bards of yore have richer harvest
So shalt thou list, and haply not unmoved,
In Harries known, and in Iona's piles,
I. “ Wake, Maid of Lorn!” the Minstrels sung. Thy rugged halls, Artornish! rung, And the dark seas, thy towers that lave, Heaved on the beach a softer wave, As mid the tuneful choir to keep The diapason of the Deep. Lulld were the winds on Inninmore, And green Loch-Alline's woodland shore, As if wild woods and waves had pleasure In listing to the lovely measure. And ne'er to symphony more sweet Gave mountain echoeso answer meet, Since, met from mainland and from isle, Ross, Arran, Ilay, and Argyle, Each minstrels tributary lay Paid homage to the festal day. Dull and dishonour'd were the bard, Worthless of guerdon and regard, Deaf to the hope of minstrel fame, Or lady's smiles, his noblest aim, Who on that morn's resistless call Were silent in Artornish hall.
II. “ Wake, Maid of Lorn!” 'twas thus they sung, And yet more proud the descant rung,
'[See Apendix, Note A.] 2 [MS.--" Made mountain echoes,” &c.]
“ Wake, Maid of Lorn! high right is ours,
-"for right is ours
To summon sleep,” &c.] 2 The seal displays a taste for music, which could scarcely be expected from his habits and local predilections. They will long follow a boat in which any musical instrument is played, and even a tune simply whistled has attractions for them. The Dean of the Isles says of Heiskar, a small uninhabited rock, about twelve (Scottish) miles from the Isle of Uist, that an infinite slaughter of seals takes place there.
But, Edith, wake, and all we see
IV. “Wake, Maid of Lorn! the moments fly, ·
Which yet that maiden-name allow ; Wake, Maiden, wake! the hour is nigh,
When Love shall claim a plighted vow. By Fear, thy bosom's fluttering guest,
By Hope, that soon shall fears remove, We bid thee break the bonds of rest,
And wake thee at the call of Love!
“Wake, Edith, wake! in yonder bay
Lies many a galley gaily mann'd, We hear the merry pibrochs play,
We see the streamers' silken band. What Chieftain's praise these pibrochs swell,
What crest is on these banners wove, The harp, the minstrel, dare not tell
The riddle must be read by Love."