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AFTER a youth my woes o'ercast,
After a thousand sorrows past,
The lovely Mary once again
Set foot upon her native plain;
Knelt on the pier with modest grace,
And turn'd to Heaven her beauteous face.
'Twas then the caps in air were blended,
A thousand thousand shouts ascended,
Shiver'd the breeze around the throng,
Gray barrier cliffs the peals prolong,
And every tongue gave thanks to Heaven,
That Mary to their hopes was given.

Her comely form and graceful mien
Bespoke the lady and the queen;
The woes of one so fair and young,
Moved every heart and every tongue.
Driven from her home a helpless child,
To brave the winds and billows wild;
An exile bred in realms afar,
Amid commotions, broils, and war.
In one short year, her hopes all cross'd-
A parent, husband, kingdom, lost!
And all ere eighteen years had shed
Their honours o'er her royal head.

For such a queen, the Stuarts' heir-
A queen so courteous, young, and fair-
Who would not every foe defy?
Who would not stand-who would not die ?

Light on her airy steed she sprung,
Around with golden tassels hung;
No chieftain there rode half so free,
Or half so light and gracefully.
How sweet to see her ringlets pale
Wide waving in the southland gale,

Which through the broom-wood blossoms flew,
To fan her cheeks of rosy hue!
Where'er it heaved her bosom's screen,
What beauties in her form were seen!
And when her courser's mane it swung,
A thousand silver bells were rung.
A sight so fair, on Scottish plain,
A Scot shall never see again!

When Mary turn'd her wond'ring eyes
On rocks that seem'd to prop the skies;
On palace, park, and battled pile;
On lake, on river, sea, and isle ;
O'er woods and meadows bathed in dew,
To distant mountains wild and blue;
She thought the isle that gave her birth,
The sweetest, wildest land on earth.

From The Queen's Wake.



WHAT Vision lingers on the heath,
Flitting across the field of death?
Its gliding motion, smooth and still
As vapour on the twilight hill,
Or the last ray of falling even
Shed through the parting clouds of heaven?

Is it a sprite that roams forlorn?
Or angel from the bowers of morn,
Come down a tear of heaven to shed,
In pity o'er the valiant dead?

No vain, no fleeting phantom this!
No vision from the bowers of bliss!
Its radiant eye and stately tread
Bespeak some beauteous mountain maid;
No rose of Eden's bosom meek,

Could match that maiden's moisten'd cheek;
No drifted wreath of morning snow
The whiteness of her lofty brow;
Nor gem of India's purest dye,
The lustre of her eagle eye.

When beauty, Eden's bowers within, First stretch'd the arm to deeds of sin; When passion burn'd, and prudence slept, The pitying angels bent and wept.

But tears more soft were never shed,
No, not when angels bow'd the head,
A sigh more mild did never breathe
O'er human nature whelm'd in death,
Nor woe and dignity combine
In face so lovely, so benign,
As Douglas saw that dismal hour,
Bent o'er a corse on Cample-moor-
A lady o'er her shield, her trust,
A brave, an only brother's dust.

What heart of man unmoved can lie,
When plays the smile in beauty's eye?
Or when a form of grace and love
To music's notes can lightly move?
Yes; there are hearts unmoved can see
The smile, the ring, the revelry;
But heart of warrior ne'er could bear
The beam of beauty's crystal tear.
Well was that morn the maxim proved-
The Douglas saw, the Douglas loved.

From The Queen's Wake.


LONG has that harp, of magic tone, To all the minstrel world been known:

Who has not heard her witching lays,
Of Ettrick banks and Yarrow braes?
But that sweet bard, who sung and pray'd
Of many a feat and border raid,
Of many a knight and lovely maid,
When forced to leave his harp behind,
Did all her tuneful chords unwind;
And many ages pass'd and came
Ere man so well could tune the same.

Bangour the daring task essay'd: Not half the chords his fingers play'd; Yet even then some thrilling lays Bespoke the harp of ancient days.

Redoubted Ramsay's peasant skill
Flung some strain'd notes along the hill;
His was some lyre from lady's hall,
And not the mountain harp at all.

Langhorne arrived from southern dale,
And chimed his notes on Yarrow vale;
They would not, could not, touch the heart-
His was the modish lyre of art.

Sweet rung the harp to Logan's hand: Then Leyden came from border land, With dauntless heart and ardour high, And wild impatience in his eye.

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