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"We'll cross the Tamar 1 land to land,
With one and all, and hand-in-hand,
"And when we come to London wall,-
Come forth! come forth, ye cowards all,
"Trelawny he's in keep and hold,2
But here's twenty thousand Cornish bold
Will know the reason why!
ROBERT STEPHEN HAWKER.
1 Tamar and Severn: rivers of the south of England. The Severn, however, would not be crossed by the Cornish men on their march to London; perhaps the Avon is meant.
2 Keep and hold: dungeon and fortress or stronghold.
THE RELIEF OF LUCKNOW.1
OH, that last day in Lucknow fort!
To yield to that foe meant worse than death;
There was one of us, a corporal's wife,
And her mind was wandering.
1 The Relief of Lucknow: In 1857 a fearful and wide-spread mutiny broke out among the native troops of India against their English rulers.
On the 1st of July a large number of English including about 130 women and children were besieged in the fort of Lucknow, a town of Northern India, on a tributary of the Ganges.
The garrison was too small to properly defend the place; food began to grow scarce, and fever, small-pox, and cholera carried off many.
For nearly three months the besieged waited for succor. At length, on Sept. 25, General Havelock came to their rescue, though the final relief of the place did not occur until Sir Colin Campbell rescued the garrison nearly a month later.
2 Mines: excavations made by the enemy for the purpose of blowing up the fort.
She lay on the ground, in her Scottish plaid,
"When my father comes hame frae the pleugh,"1 she said,
"Oh! then please wauken 2 me."
She slept like a child on her father's floor,
It was smoke and roar and powder-stench,
I sank to sleep; and I had my dream
And wall and garden; but one wild scream
There Jessie Brown stood listening
Till a sudden gladness broke
All over her face; and she caught my hand
"The Hielanders!6 Oh! dinna ye hear
The McGregor's?8 Oh! I ken it weel; 10
1 Pleugh: plough.
2 Wauken: waken.
8 Flecking here, dappling or variegating with light and shade.
4 Wheel spinning-wheel.
6 Hielanders: Highlanders.
5 Stayed stopped.
7 Slogan: the war-cry.
8 McGregor's: the Highland clan of that name.
9 Ken: know.
10 Weel: well.
"God bless thae 1 bonny 2 Hielanders!
Along the battery line her cry
Had fallen among the men,
And they started back;
they were there to die;
But was life so near them, then?
They listened for life; the rattling fire
Were all; and the colonel shook his head,
Then Jessie said, "That slogan's done;
But can ye
"The Campbells are comin' " ? 4 It's no a dream;
We heard the roar and the rattle afar,
But the pipes we could not hear;
So the men plied their work of hopeless war,
It was not long ere it made its way,
1 Thae: those.
2 Bonny: handsome, good.
8 Noo: now,
6 Pipes: bag-pipes.
4 "The Campbells are comin'": a famous Scotch tune.
5 Succors: rescuers.
7 Sappers: the enemy's soldiers engaged in making the mines to blow up the fort.
It was the pipers of the Highlanders !
And now they played "Auld Lang Syne." It came to our men like the voice of God, And they shouted along the line.
And they wept, and shook one another's hands,
And every one knelt down where he stood,
That happy day, when we welcomed them,
And the general gave her his hand, and cheers
And the pipers' ribbons and tartan 1 streamed,
And our joyful cheers were broken with tears,
ROBERT TRAIL SPENCE LOWELL
1 Tartan: the Scotch plaid.