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His ashes undistinguish'd lie,
Where martial spirits, all on fire,
They met on Teviot's strand :
As brothers meet in foreign land:
Were interchanged in greeting dear;
Partook of social cheer.
With dice and draughts some chased the day;
Pursued the foot-ball play.
From the fair Middle Marches came;
Announcing Douglas' dreaded name! Vails not to tell what steeds did spurn, Where the Seven Spears of Wedderburne
The men in battle-order set;
Of Clarence's Plantagenet.
And Hepburn's mingled banners come, Down the steep mountain glittering far,
And shouting still, “ a home! a home !"
Or sign of war been seen,
Had died with gore the green.
And in the groan of death;
Had found a bloody sheath. 'Twixt truce and war, such sudden change Was not infrequent, nor held strange,
In the old Border-day;
Loud hollo, whoop, or whistle ran,
Give the shrill watch word of their clan; And revellers o'er their bowls proclaim Douglas or Dacre's conquering name.
And how a day of fight was ta’en
And how the ladye pray'd them dear,
To taste of Branksome cheer.
How these two hostile armies met?
To keep the truce which here was set;
Less frequent heard, and fainter still,
At length, the various clamours died; And you might hear, from Branksome hill,
No sound but Teviot's rushing tide; Save, when the changing sentinel The challenge of his watch could tell; And save, where, through the dark profound, The clanging axe and hammer's sound
* A sort of knife, or poniard.
Rung from the nether lawn ;
And oft I've deem'd, perchance he thought For many a busy hand toild there,
Their erring passion might have wrought Strong pales to shape, and beams to square,
Sorrow, and sin, and shame; The lists' dread barriers to prepare
And death to Cranstoun's gallant knight, Against the morrow's dawn.
And to the gentle ladye bright,
Disgrace, and loss of fame.
But earthly spirit could not tell
The heart of them that love so well. Despite the dame's reproving eye;
True love's the gift which God has given Nor mark'd she, as she left her seat,
To man alone beneath the heaven. Full many a stifled sigh:
It is not fantasy's hot fire, For many a noble warrior strove
Whose wishes, soon as granted, fly; To win the power of Teviot's love,
It liveth not in fierce desire, And many a bold ally
With dead desire it doth not die; With throbbing head and anxious heart,
It is the secret sympathy, All in her lonely bower apart,
The silver link, the silken tie, In broken sleep she lay;
Which heart to heart, and mind to mind, By times, from silken couch she rose;
In body and in soul can bind.While yet the banner'd hosts repose,
Now leave we Margaret and her knight,
To tell you of the approaching fight.
Their warning blast the bugles blew,
The pipe's sbrill port* aroused each clan: She gazed upon the inner court,
In haste, the deadly strife to view, Which in the tower's tall shadow lay;
The trooping warriors eager ran : Where coursers' clang, and stamp, and snort, Thick round the lists their lances stood, Had rung the livelong yesterday ;
Like blasted pines in Ettrick wood;
To Branksome many a look they threw,
And bandied many a word of boast,
About the knight each favour'd most.
For now arose disputed claim,
Of who should fight for Deloraine, 0! if one page's slumbers break,
'Twixt Harden and 'twixt Thirlestane: His blood the price must pay!
They 'gan to reckon kin and rent, Not all the pearls queen Mary wears,
And frowning brow on brow was bent; Not Margaret's yet more precious tears,
But yet not long the strife-for, lo!
Himself, the knight of Deloraine,
Strong, as it seem'd, and free from pain,
In armour sheath'd from top to toe, Yet was his hazard small; for well
Appear'd, and craved the combat due. You may bethink you of the spell
The dame her charm successful knew,t Of that sly urchin page ;
And the fierce chiefs their claims withdrew. This to his lord he did impart, And made him seem, by glamour art,
XVI. A knight from hermitage.
When for the lists they sought the plain, Unchallenged, thus, the warder's post,
The stately ladye's silken rein The court, unchallenged, thus he crossid,
Did noble Howard hold; For all the vassalage:
Unarmed by her side he walk'd, But, 0! what magic's quaint disguise
And much in courteous phrase they talk'd Could blind fair Margaret's azure eyes !
Of feats of arms of old. She started from her seat;
Costly his garb—his Flemish ruff While with surprise and fear she strove,
Fell o'er his doublet, shaped of buff, And both could scarcely master love
With satin slash'd and lined;
Tawny his boot, and gold his spur,
His cloak was all of Poland fur,
His hose with silver twined; Oft have I mused, what purpose bad
His Bilboa blade, by Marchmen felt,
Hung in a broad and studded belt;
* A martial piece of music, adapted to the bagpipes. In such no joy is found;
+ See p. 609, stanza XXIII.
Then, Teviot! how thine echoes rang, When bugle sound, and trumpet clang
Let loose the martial foes, And in 'mid list, with shield poised high, And measured step, and wary eye,
The combatants did close.
XXI. Iu would it suit your gentle ear, Ye lovely listeners, to hear How to the axe the helms did sound, And blood pour'd down from many a wound; For desperate was the strife and long, And either warrior fierce and strong. But, were each dame a listening knight, I well could tell how warriors fight; For I have seen war's lightning flashing, Seen the claymore with bayonet clashing, Seen through red blood the war-borse dashing, And scorn'd, amid the reeling strife, To yield a step for death or life.
Hence, in rude phrase, the Borderers still
Whose foot-cloth swept the ground;
Of whitest roses bound.
That none, while lasts the strife,
On peril of his life ;
ENGLISH HERALD. Here standeth Richard of Musgrave,
Good knight, and true, and freely born, Amends from Deloraine to crave,
For foul despiteous scathe and scorn:
Is traitor false by Border laws;
SCOTTISH HERALD. Here stanleth William of Deloraine, Good knight, and true, of noble strain, Who sayeth, that foul treason's stain, Since he bore arms, ne'er soil'd his coat;
And that, so help him God above!
He will on Musgrave's body prove, He lies most foully in his throat.
XXII. 'Tis done, 'tis done! that fatal blow
Has stretch'd him on the bloody plain; He strives to rise-Brave Musgrave, no!
Thence never shalt thou rise again! He chokes in blood-some friendly hand Undo the visor's barred band, Unfix the gorget's iron clasp, And give him room for life to gasp ! O, bootless aid !-Haste, holy friar, Haste, ere the sinner shall expire ! Of all his guilt let him be shriven, And smooth his path from earth to heaven?
XXIII. In haste the holy friar sped,
His naked foot was died with red,
As through the lists he ran :
He raised the dying man;
Still props him from the bloody sod;
And bids him trust in God! Unheard he prays ;--the death-pang's o'er! Richard of Musgrave breathes no more.
The silent victor stands :
Of gratulating bands. When, lo! strange cries of wild surprise, Mingled with seeming terror, rise
Among the Scottish bands;
Forward, brave champions to the fight! Sound trumpets !
“God defend the right!"
And all, amid the throng'd array,
As dizzy, and in pain;
Knew William of Deloraine !
“ And who art thou,” they cried, “ Who hast this battle fought and won ?” His plumed helm was soon undone
“ Cranstoun of Teviotside! For this fair prize I've fonght and won :"And to the ladye led her son.
But well she thought, ere midnight came,
XXV. Full oft the rescued boy she kiss'd, And often press'd him to her breast; For, under all her dauntless show, Her heart had throbb'd at every blow; Yet not Lord Cranstoun deign'd she greet, Though low he kneeled at her feet. Me list not tell what words were made, What Douglas, Home, and Howard said
- For Howard was a generous foeAnd how the clan united pray'd,
The ladye would the feud forego, And deign to bless the nuptial hour Of Cranstoun's lord and Teviot's flower.
And taught that, in the listed plain,
Under the name of Deloraine.
Not much this new ally he loved,
He greeted him right heartilie:
Though rude, and scant of courtesy.
When on dead Musgrave he look'd down ;
Though half disguised with a frown; And thus, while sorrow bent his head, His foeman's epitaph he made.
Thought on the spirit's prophesy,
“ Not you, but fate, has vanquish'd me; Their influence kindly stars may shower On Teviot's tide and Branksome's tower,
Por pride is quell'd, and love is free.” She took fair Margaret by the hand, Who, breathless, trembling, scarce might stand;
That hand to Cranstoun's lord gave she:-
This clasp of love our bond shall be,
XXIX. “Now, Richard Musgrave, liest thou here!
I ween, my deadly enemy; For, if I slew thy brother dear,
Thou slewest a sister's son to me; And when I lay in dungeon dark,
or Naworth Castle, long months three, Till ransom'd for a thousand mark,
Dark Musgrave, it was long of thee. And, Musgrave, could our fight be tried,
And thou wert now alive, as I,
Till one or both of us did die.
* The spectral apparition of a living person.
The lands that over Ouse to Berwick forth do bear, Have for their blazon had, the gnafle, spur, and spear.
Poly-Albion, song xiii.
To the vile dust, from whence he sprung, Unwept, unhonour'd, and unsung.
Cheer the dark bloodhound on his way,
XXX So mourn'd he, till Lord Dacre's band Were bowning back to Cumberland. They raised brave Musgrave from the field, And laid him on his bloody shield ; On levellid lances four and four, By turns, the noble burden bore. Before, at times, upon the gale, Was heard the minstrel's plaintive wail; Behind, four priests, in sable stole, Sung requiem for the warrior's soul: Around, the horsemen slowly rode ; With trailing pikes the spearmen trode; And thus the gallant knight they bore, Through Liddesdale, to Leven's shore ; Thence to Holme Coltrame's lofty nave, And laid him in his father's grave.
II. O Caledonia ! stern and wild, Meet nurse for a poetic child ! Land of brown heath and shaggy wood, Land of the mountain and the flood, Land of my sires! what mortal hand Can e'er untie the filial band, That knits me to thy rugged strand! Still, as I view each well known scene, Think what is now, and what hath been, Seems as, to me, of all bereft, Sole friends thy woods and streams are left i And thus I love them better still, Even in extremity of ill. By Yarrow's stream still let me stray, Though none should guide iny feeble way; Still feel the breeze down Ettrick break, Although it chill my wither'd cheek; Still lay my head by Teviot's stone, Though there, forgotten and alone, The bard may draw his parting groan.
The harp's wild notes, though hush'd the song,
for every merry mate,
The aged harper, howsoe'er His only friend, his harp, was dear, Liked not to hear it rank'd so high Above his flowing poesy ; Less liked he still that scornful jeer Misprized the land he loved so dear; High was the sound, as thus again The bard resumed his minstrel strain.
Me lists not at this tide declare
I. BREATHES there the man, with soul so dead, Who never to himself hath said,
This is my own, my native land ! Whose heart hath ne'er within him burn'd, As home his footsteps he hath turn'd,
From wandering on a foreign strand ? If such there breathe, go, mark him well; For him no minstrel's raptures swell; High though his titles, proud his name, Boundless his wealth as wish can claim; Despite those titles, power, and pelf, The wretch, concentred all in self, Living, shall forfeit fair renown, And, doubly dying, shall go down
Some bards have sung, the ladye high