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For none were in the castle then
But women, boys, or aged men.
With eyes scarce dried, the sorrowing dame,
To welcome noble Marmion, came;
Her son, a stripling twelve years old,
Proffer'd the baron's rein to hold ;
For each man that could draw a sword
Had march'd that morning with their lord,
Earl Adam Hepburn,-he who died
On Fludden by his sovereign's side.
Long may his lady look in vain !
She ne'er sball see his gallant train
Come sweeping back through Crichtoun-dear.
'Twas a brave race, before the name
Of hated Bothwell stain'd their fame.

The palmer, his mysterious guide,
Beholding thus bis place supplied,

Sought to take leave in vain :
Strict was the lion-king's command,
That none who rode in Marmion's band

Should sever from the train :
“ England has here enow of spies
In lady Heron's witching eyes :"
To Marchmount thus, apart, he said,
But fair pretext to Marmion made.
The right hand path they now decline,
And trace against the stream the Tyne.

X.
At length up that wild dale they wind,

Where Critchtoun-castle crowns the bank; For there the lion's care assign'd

A lodging meet for Marmion's rank.
That castle rises on the steep

Of the green vale of Tyne ;
And far beneath, where slow they creep
From pool to eddy, dark and deep,
Where alders moist, and willows weep,

You hear her streams repine.
The towers in different ages rose;
Their various architecture shows

The builders' various hands;
A mighty mass that could oppose,
When deadliest hatred fired its foes,
The vengeful Douglas bands.

XI.
Critchtoun ! though now thy miry court

But pens the lazy steer and sheep,

Thy turrets rude and totter'd keep Have been the minstrel's loved resort. Oft have I traced, within thy fort,

Of mouldering shields the mystic sense,

Scutcheons of honour, or pretence, Quarter'd in old armorial sort,

Remains of rude magnificence.
Nor wholly yet hath time defaced

Thy lordly gallery fair ;
Nor yet the stony chord unbraced,
Whose twisted knots, with roses laced,

Adorn thy ruin'd stair.
Still rises unimpair’d, below,
The court-yard's graceful portico ;
Above its cornice, row and row,
Of fairhewn facets richly show

Their pointed diamond form,
Though there but homeless cattle go

To shield them from the storm.
And, shuddering, still may we explore,

Where oft whilome were captives pent,
The darkness of thy massy-more :*

Or, from thy grass-grown battlement,
May trace, in undulating line,
The sluggish mazes of the Tyne.

XII.
Another aspect Crichtoun show'd,
As through its portal Marmion rode;
But yet 'twas melancholy state
Received him at the outer gate ;

XIII.
And here two days did Marmion rest,

With every rite that honour claims,
Attended as the king's own guest ;-

Such the command of royal James, Who marshall'd them his lands array, Upon the Borough-moor that lay. Perchance he would not foeman's eye Upon his gathering host should pry, Till full prepared was every band To march against the English land. Here while they dwelt, did Lindesay's wit Oft cheer the baron's moodier fit: And, in his turn, he knew to prize Lord Marmion's powerful mind, and wise Train'd in the lore of Rome and Greece, And policies of war and peace.

XIV.
It chanced, as fell the second night,

That on the battlement they walk'd, And, by the slowly fading light,

On varying topics talk'd;
And, unaware, the herald-bard
Said, Marmion might his toil have spared

In travelling so far ;
For that a messenger from heavep
In vain to James had counsel given

Against the English war:
And, closer question'd, thus he told
A tale which chronicles of old
In Scottish story have en roll'd:-

XV. SIR DAVID LINDESAY'S TALE. “Of all the palaces so fair,

Built for the royal dwelling,
In Scotland, far beyond compare

Linlithgow is excelling;
And in its park, in jovial June,
How sweet the merry linnet's tune,

How blitbe the blackbird's lay!
The wild buck bells* from ferny brake,
The coot dives merry on the lake,
The saddest heart might pleasure take

To see all nature gay.
But June is to our sovereign dear
The heaviest month in all the year :

* The pit, or prison vault.

* An ancient word for the cry of deer.

Too well his cause of grief you know,

But, lighter than the whirlwind's blast June saw his father's overthrow.

He vanish'd from our eyes, Wo to the traitors who could bring

Like sunbeam on the billow cast,
The princely boy against his king!

That glances but, and dies.”
Still in his conscience burns the sting.
In offices as strict as lent,

XVIII.
King James's June is ever spent.

While Lindesay told this marvel strange, XVI.

The twilight was so pale,

He mark'd not Marmion's colour change, “ When last this ruthful month was come,

While listening to the tale :
And in Linlithgow's holy dome

But, after a suspended pause,
The king, as wont, was praying;
While for his royal father's soul,

The baron spoke :_“Of nature's laws

So strong I held the force, The chanters sung, the bells did toll,

That never superhuman cause The bishop mass was saying

Could e'er control their course; For now the year brought round again

And, three days since, had judged your aim The day the luckless king was slain

Was but to make your guest your game. In Katharine's aisle the monarch knelt,

But I have seen, since past the Tweed, With sackcloth shirt, and iron belt,

What much has changed my skeptic creed, And eyes with sorrow streaming;

And made me credit aught."--He staid, Around him, in their stalls of state,

And seem'd to wish his words unsaid: The thistle's knight-companions sate,

But, by that strong emotion press'd, Their banners o'er them beaming.

Which prompts us to unload our breast, 1, too, was there, and, sooth to tell,

E’en when discovery's pain, Bedeafend with the jingling knell,

To Lindesay did at length unfold Was watching where the sunbeams fell,

The tale his village host had told Through the staind casement gleaming;

At Gifford, to his train. But, while I mark'd what next befell,

Naught of the palmer says he there, It seem'd as I were dreaming.

And naught of Constance or of Clare: Stepp'd from the crowd a ghostly wight,

The thoughts which broke his sleep, he seerns In azure gown, with cincture white,

To mention but as feverish dreams.
His forehead bald, his head was bare,
Down bung at length his yellow hair.-

XIX.
Now mock me not when, good my lord,

“ In vain,” said he, " to rest I spread I pledge to you my knightly word, That, when I saw his placid grace,

My burning limbs, and couch'd my head: His simple majesty of face,

Fantastic thoughts return'd; His solemn bearing, and his pace

And, by their wild dominion led, So stately gliding on,

My heart within me burn'd. Seem'd to me ne'er did limner paint

So sore was the delirious goad, So just an image of the saint

I took my steed and forth I rode, Who propp'd the virgin in her faint,

And, as the moon shone bright and cold, The loved apostle John.

Soon reach'd the camp upon the wold.

The southern entrance I past through,
XVII.

And halted, and my bugle blew. “ He stepp'd before the monarch's chair,

Methought an answer met my ear, And stood with rustic plainness there,

Yet was the blast so low and drear, And little reverence made;

So hollow, and so faintly blown,
Nor head, nor body, bow'd nor bent,

It might be echo of my own.
But on the desk his arm he lent,
And words like these he said,

XX.
In a low voice,-but never tone

“ Thus judging, for a little space So thrilld through vein, and nerve, and bone :- I listen'd, ere I left the place; My mother sent me from afar,

But scarce could trust my eyes, Sir king, to warn thee not to war,

Nor yet can think they served me true Wo waits on thine array ;

When sudden in the ring I view, If war thou wilt, of woman fair,

In form distinct of shape and hue, Her witching wiles and wanton snare,

A mounted champion rise.James Stuart, doubly warn'd beware:

I've fought, lord lion, many a day, God keep thee as he may !

In single fight and mix'd affray, The wondering monarch seem'd to seek

And ever, I myself may say, For answer, and found none;

Have borne me as a knight; And when he raised his head to speak,

But when this unexpected foe The monitor was gone.

Seem'd starting from the gulf below,The marshall and myself had cast

I care not though the truth I show, To stop him as he outward past;

I trembled with affright;

And as I placed in rest my spear, My hand so shook for very fear,

I scarce could couch it right.

When guilt we meditate within,
Or harbour unrepented sin.”
Lord Marmion turn’d him half aside,
And twice to clear his voice he tried,

Then press'd Sir David's hand, -
But naught, at length, in answer said ;
And here their farther converse staid,

Each ordering that his band Should bowne them with the rising day, To Scotland's camp to take their way,

Such was the king's command.

XXI. Why need my tongue the issue tell? We ran our course,-my charger fell, What could he 'gainst the shock of hell ?

I roll'd upon the plain.
High o'er my head, with threatening hand,
The spectre shook his naked brand,

Yet did the worst remain :
My dazzled eyes I upward cast,-
Not opening hell itself could blast

Their sight like what I saw!
Full on his face the moonbeam strook,-
A face could never be mistook!
I knew the stern vindictive look,

And held my breath for awe.
I saw the face of one who, fed
To foreign climes, has long been dead, -

I well believe the last;
For ne'er, from visor raised, did stare
A human warior, with a glare

So grimly and so ghast.
Thrice o'er my head he shook the blade :
But when to good saint George I pray'd,
(The first time e'er I ask'd his aid,)

He plunged it in his sheath; And, on his courser mounting light, He seem'd to vanish from my sight: The moonbeamn droop'd, and deepest night

Sunk down upon the heath."Twere long to tell what cause I have

To know his face that met me there,
Call'd by his hatred from the grave,

To cumber upper air;
Dead or alive, good cause had he
To be my mortal enemy."

XXIII. Early they took Dun-Edin's road, And I could trace each step they trode; Hill, brook, nor dell, nor rock, nor stone, Lies on the path to me unknown. Much might it boast of storied lore; But, passing such digression o'er, Suffice it that their route was laid Across the furzy hills of Braid. They pass'd the glen and scanty rill, And climb'd the opposing bank, until They gain'd the top of Blackford Hill.

XXIV. Blackford! on whose upcultured breast,

Among the broom, and thorn, and whin,
A truant boy, I sought the nest,
Or listed, as I lay at rest,

While rose, on breezes ihin,
The murmur of the city crowd,
And, from his steeple jangling loud,

Saint Gılc's mingling din--
Now, from the summit of the plain,
Waves all the hill with yellow grain ;

And, o'er the lanscape as I look,
Naught do I sec unchanged remain,

Save the rude cliff's and chiming brook: To me they make a heavy moan Of early friendships past and gone.

XXII.

Marvell’d Sir David of the mount;
Then, learn'd in story, 'gan recount

Such chance had hap'd of old,
When once, neai Norham, there did fight
A spectre fell, of fiendish might,
In likeness of a Scottish Knight,

With Brian Bulmer bold,
And train’d him nigh to disallow
The aid of his baptismal vow.
And such a phantom, too, 'tis said,
With highland broadsword, targe, and plaid,

And fingers red with gore,
Is seen in Rothiemurchus’s glade,
Or where the sable pine trees shade
Dark Tomantoul, and Achnaslaid,

Dromouchty, or Glenmore.
And yet, whate'er such legends say,
Of warlike demon, host, or fay,

On mountain, moor, or plain,
Spotless in faith, in bosom bold,
True son of chivalry should hold

These midnight terrors vain;
For seldom have such spirits power
To harm, save in the evil hour,

XXV.
But different far the change has been,

Since Marmion, from the crown
Of Blackford, saw that martial scene

Upon the bent so brown:
Thousand pavilions, white as snow,
Spread all the Borough-moor below,

Upland, and dale, and down :A thousand did I say? I ween, Thousand on thousands there were seen, That checker'd all the heath between

The streamlet and the town: In crossing ranks extending far, Forming a camp irregular; Oft giving way where still there stood Some relics of the old oak wood, That darkly huge did intervene, And tamed the glaring white with green: In these extended lines there lay A martial kingdom's vast array.

XXVI. For from Hebudes, dark with rain, To eastern Lodon's fertile plain,

Answer'd the bard, of milder mood :
“Fair is the sight,—and yet 'twere good,

That kings would think withal, When peace and wealth their land has bless'd, 'Tis better to sit still at rest,

Than rise, perchance, to fall.”

And from the southern Redswire edge
To farthest Rosse's rocky ledge;
From west to east, from south to north,
Scotland sent all her warriors forth.
Marmion might hear the mingled hum
Of myriads up the mountain come;
The horses' tramp, and lingling clank
Where chiefs review'd their vassal rank,

And charger's shrilling neigh;
And see the shifting lines advance,
While frequent flash'd, from shield and lance,
The sun's reflected ray.

XXVII.
Thin curling in the morning air,
The wreaths of falling smoke declare
To embers now the brand decay'd,
Where the night-watch their fires had made.
They saw, slow rolling on the plain,
Full many a baggage-cart and wain,
And dire artillery's clumsy car,
By sluggish oxen tugg'd to war;
And there were Both wick's sisters seven,*
And culvering which France had given.
Ill-omen'd gist! the gups rernain
The conqueror's spoil on Flodden plain.

XXVIII.
Nor mark'd they less, where in the air
A thousand streamers flaunted fair;

Various in shape, device, and hue,

Green, sanguine, purple, red, and blue,
Broad, narrow, swallow-tail'd, and square,
Scroll, pennon, pensil, bandrol,t there

O'er the pavilions Rew.
Highest and midmost, was descried
The royal banner floating wide :
The staff a pine tree strong and straight,

Pitch'd deeply in a massive stone,

Which still in memory is shown, Yet bent beneath the standard's weight, Whene'er the western wind unrolla, With toil, the huge and cumbrous fold,

And gave to view the dazzling field,

Where, in proud Scotland's royal shield, The ruddy lion ramp'd in gold.

XXIX.
Lord Marmion view'd the landscape bright,-
He view'd it with a chiel's delight,-

Until within him burn'd his heart,
And lightning from his eye did part,

As on the battle-day;
Such glance did falcon never dart,

When stooping on his prey.
“()! well, lord-lion, hast thou said,
Thy king from warfare to dissuade

Were but a vain essay;
For, by St. George, were that host mine,
Not power inserna), nor divine,
Should once to peace my soul incline,
Till I had dimm'd their armour's shine

In glorious battle-fray !"

XXX.
Still on the spot Lord Marmion stay'd,
For fairer scene he ne'er survey'd.

When sated with the martial show
That peopled all the plain below,
The wandering eye could o'er it go,
And mark the distant city glow

With gloomy splendour red;
For on the smoke-wreaths, huge and slow
That round her sable turret's flow,

The morning beams were shed,
And tinged them with a lustre proud,
Like that which streaks a thunder-cloud.
Such dusky grandeur clothed the height,
Where the hugecastle holds its state,

And all the steep slope down,
Whose ridgy back heaves to the sky,
Piled deep and massy, close and high,

Mine own romantic town!
But northward far, with purer blaze,
On Ochil mountains fell the rays,
And, as each heathy top they kiss'd,
It gleam'd a purple amethyst.

Yonder the shores of Fife you saw;
Here Preston-bay, and Berwick-law;

And, broad between them rollid,
The gallant Frith the eye might note,
Whose islands on its bosom float

Like emeralds chased in gold.
Fitz-Eustace' heart felt closely pent;

As if to give his rapture vent,
The spur he to his charger lent,

And raised his bridal hand,
And, making demi-vault in air,
Cried, “ Where's the coward that would not dare

To fight for such a land!”
The lion smiled his joy to see;
Nor Marmion's frown repress'd his glee.

XXXI.
Thus while they look'd a flourish proud,
Where mingled trump and clarion loud,

And tife, and kettle-drum,
And sackbut deep, and psaltery,
And warpipe with discordant cry,
And cymbal clattering to the sky,
Making wild music bold and high,

Did up the mountain come:
The whilst the bells, with distant chime,
Merrily toll'd the hour of prime,

And thus the lion spoke:-
“ Thus clamour'd still the war-notes, when
The king to mass his way has ta’en,
Or to St. Catherine's of Sienne,

Or chapel of St. Rocque.
To you they speak of martial fame;
But me remind of peaceful game,

When blither was their cheer,

Seven culverins, so calle-1, cast by one Borthwick. + Each of these feudal ensigas intimated the different rank of those entitled to display them.

Thrilling in Falkland woods the air,
In signal none bis steed should spare,
But strive which foremost might repair

To tbe downfall of the deer.

XXXII. “ Nor less,” he said, “when looking forth, I view yon empress of the north

Sit on her billy throne;
Her palace's imperial bowers,
Her castle, proof to hostile powers,
Her stately halls and holy towers-

Nor less,” he said, “ I moan
To think what wo mischance may bring,
And how these merry bells may ring
The death dirge of our gallant king;

Or, with their larum, call
The burghers forth to watch and ward,
'Gainst southern sack and fires to guard

Dun-Edin's leaguer'd wall.-
But not for my presaging thought,
Dream conquest sure, or cheaply bought !

Lord Marmion, I say nay:
God is the guider of the field,
He breaks the champion's spear and shield,

But thou thyself shalt say, When joins yon host in deadly stowre, That England's dames must weep in bower,

Her monks the death-mass sing;
For never saw'st thou such a power

Led on by such a king."
And now, down winding to the plain,
The barriers of the camp they gain,

And there they make a stay.-
There stays the minstrel, till he fling
His hand o’er every border string,
And fit his harp the pomp to sing
Of Scotland's ancient court and king,

In the succeeding lay.

When wrinkled news-page, thrice-conn'd o'er,
Beguiles the dreary hour no more,
And darkling politician, crossid,
Inveighs against the lingering post,
And answering housewife sore complains
Of carrier's snow-impeded wains:
When such the country cheer, I come,
Well pleased, to seek our city home;
For converse, and for books to change
The forest's melancholy range,
And welcome, with renew'd delight,
The busy day and social night.

Not here need my desponding rhyme
Lament the ravages of time,
As erst by Newark's riven towers,
And Ettrick stripp'd of forest bowers.*
True,-Caledonia's queen is changed,
Since, on her dusky summit ranged,
Within its steepy limits pent,
By bulwark, line, and battlement,
And flanking towers, and laky flood,
Guarded and garrison'd she stood,
Denying entrance or resort,
Save at each tall embattled port;
Above whose arch, suspended, hung
Portcullis spiked with iron prong.
That long is gone,—but not so long,
Since, early closed, and opening late,
Jealous revolved the studded gate,
Whose task, from eve to morning tide,
A wicket churlishly supplied.
Stern then, and steel-girt was thy brow,
Dun-Edin! 0, how alter'd now,
When safe amid thy mountain court
Thou sit'st, like empress at her sport,
And, liberal, unconfined, and free,
Flinging thy white arms to the sea,
For thy dark cloud with umber'd lower,
That hung o'er cliff, and lake, and tower,
Thou gleam'st against the western ray
Ten thousand lines of brighter day.

Not she, the championess of old,
In Spenser's magic tale enroll'd, -
She for the charmed spear renown'd,
Which forced each knight to kiss the ground,
Not she more changed, when placed at rest,
What time she was Malbecco's guest,t
She gave to flow her maiden vest;
When from the corslet's grasp relieved,
Free to the sight her bosom heaved ;
Sweet was her blue eye's modest smile,
Erst hidden by the aventayle;
And down her shoulders graceful roll'd
Her locks profuse, of paly gold.
They who whilome, in midnight fight,
Had marvell’d at her matchless might,
No less her maiden charms approved,
But looking liked, and liking loved. I
The sight could jealous pangs beguile,
And charm Malbecco's charms awhile;

INTRODUCTION TO CANTO V.

TO GEORGE ELLIS, ESQ.

Edinburgh. WHEN dark December glooms the day, And takes our autumn joys away; When short and scant the sunbeam throws, Upon the weary waste of snows, A cold and profitless regard, Like patron on a needy bard; When sylvan occupation's done, And o'er the chimney rests the gun, And hang, in idle trophy, near, The game pouch, fishing-rod, and spear ; When wiry terrier, rough and grim, And greyhound, with bis length of limb, And pointer, now employ'd no more, Cumber our parlour's narrow foor ; When in his stall the impatient steed Is long condemn'd to rest and feed; When from our snow-éncircled home, Scarce cares the hardiest step to roam, Since path is none, save that to bring The needful water fom the spring;

* See Introduction to Canto II + See“ The Fairy Queen," Book III., Canto IX. “For every one her liked, and every one her loved."

Spenser, as above

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