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THE MAID OF NEIDPATH
ut yet his saddened brow confessed i passing shade of doubt and awe; ne fiend was whispering in his breast, Beware of injured Bothwellhaugh!
'he death-shot parts! the charger
springs ; Vild rises tumult's startling roar ! d Murray's plumy helmet ringsRings on the ground to rise no more. What joy the raptured youth can feel, Po hear her love the loved one tell
he who broaches on his steel The wolf by whom his infant fell. But dearer to my injured eye To see in dust proud Murray roll ; nd mine was ten times trebled joy To hear him groan his felon soul. My Margaret's spectre glided near. With pride her bleeding victim saw, nd shrieked in his death-deafened ear, · Remember injured Both wellhaugh!' Then speed thee, noble Chatlerault ! Spread to the wind thy bannered tree! ach warrior bend his Cịydesdale bow Murray is fallen and Scotland free!” aults every warrior to his steed; Loud bugles join their wild acclaimMurray is fallen and Scotland freed ! Couch, Arran, couch thy spear of
O, LOVERS' eyes are sharp to see,
And lovers' ears in hearing ; And love in life's extremity
- Can lend an hour of cheering. Disease had been in Mary's bower,
And slow decay from mourning, Though now she sits on Neidpath's
tower To watch her love's returning. All sunk and dim her eyes so bright,
Her form decayed by pining, Till through her wasted hand at night
You saw the taper shining; By fits, a sultry hectic hue
Across her cheek was flying ; By fits, so ashy pale she grew,
Her maidens thought her dying. Yet keenest powers to see and hear
Seemed in her frame residing; Before the watch-dog pricked his ear,
She heard her lover's riding; Ere scarce a distant form was kenned,
She knew, and waved to greet him; And o'er the battlement did bend,
As on the wing to meet him. He came--he passed--an heedless gaze,
As o'er some stranger glancing; Her welcome, spoke in faltering phrase,
Lost in his courser's prancing-The castle arch, whose hollow tone
Returns each whisper spoken, Could scarcely catch the feeble moan Which told her heart was broken.
But see! the minstrel vision fails-
Or sink in Evan's lonely roar. For the loud bugle pealing high,
The blackbird whistles down the vale, And sunk in ivied ruins lie
The bannered towers of Evandale. For chiefs intent on bloody deed,
And Vengeance shouting o'er the slain, Lo! high-born Beauty rules the steed,
Or graceful guides the silken rein. And long may Peace and Pleasure own
The maids who list the minstrel's tale; Nor e'er a ruder guest be known On the fair banks of Evandale!
WAKEN, lords and ladies gay,
Waken, lords and ladies gay,
Louder, louder chant the lay,
A TALE OF FLODDEN FIELD
See Lockhart's Life of Scott, Vol. III, Chap. 16.
Day set on Norham's castled steep,
And Cheviot's mountains lone ;
weep, The flanking walls that round it sweep,
In yellow lustre shone.
Seemned forms of giant height;
In lines of dazzling light. Saint George's banner, broad and gay, Now faded, as the fading ray
Less bright, and less, was flung; The evening gale had scarce the power To wave it on the donjon tower,
So heavily it hung. The scouts had parted on their search,
The castle gates were barred ;
The warder kept his guard,
Beneath a pennon gay ;
Beneath the sable palisade
For well the blast he knew ;
Bring pasties of the doe, And quickly make the entrance free, And bid my heralds ready be, And every minstrel sound his glee,
And all our trumpets blow ; And, from the platform, spare ye not To fire a noble salvo-shot ;
Lord Marmion waits below !" Then to the castle's lower ward
Sped forty yeomen tall, The iron-studded gates unbarred, Raised the portcullis' ponderous guard, The lofty palisade unsparred,
And let the drawbridge fall. Along the bridge Lord Marmion rode, Proudly his red-roan charger trode. His helm hung at the saddle bow ; Well by his visage you might know He was a stalworth knight and keen, And had in many a battle been ;) The scar on his brown cheek revealed A token true of Boswortlı field ; His eyebrow dark and eye of fire Showed spirit proud and prompt to ire. Yet lines of thought upon his cheek Did deep design and counsel speak. His forehead, by his casque worn bare, His thick moustache and curly hair, Coal-black, and grizzled here and there
But more through toil than age,
"Tis meet that I should tell you now, How fairly armed, and ordered how,
The soldiers of the guard, With musket, pike, and morion, To welcome noble Marmion,
Stood in the castle-yard ; Minstrels and trumpeters were there, The gunner held his linstock yare,
For welcome-shot prepared : Entered the train, and such a clang As then through all his turrets rang
Old Norham never heard.
s square-turned joints and strength of
limb, owed him no carpet knight so trim, it in close fight a champion grim, In camps a leader sage. ell was be armed from head to heel, mail and plate of Milan steel ; It his strong helm, of mighty cost, as all with burnished gold embossed. nid the plumage of the crest falcon hovered on her nest. ith wings outspread and forward
breast; en such a falcon, on his shield, ared sable in an azure field : le golden legend bore aright, Who checks at me. to death is dight." lue was the charger's broidered rein ; lue ribbons decked his arching mane ; ne knightly housing's ample fold as velvet blue and trapped with gold. ehind him rode two gallant squires, f noble name and knightly sires : hey burned the gilded spurs to claim, or well could each a war-horse tame, ould draw the bow, the sword could
sway, ind lightly bear the ring away; or less with courteous precepts stored, ould dance in hall, and carve at board, ind frame love-ditties passing rare, und sing them to a lady fair. our men-at-arms came at their backs, Vith halbert, bill, and battle-axe ; They bore Lord Marmion's lance so
strong Ind led his sumpter-mules along, und ambling palfrey, when at need lim listed ease his battle-steed. The last and trustiest of the four In high his forky pennon bore ; Like swallow's tail in shape and hue, Fluttered the streamer glossy blue, Where, blazoned sable, as before, The towering falcon seemed to soar. Last, twenty yeomen, two and two In hosen black and jerkins blue, With falcons broidered on each breast, Attended on their lord's behest. Each, chosen for an archer good, Knew hunting-craft by lake or wood ; Each one a six-foot bow could bend, And far a cloth-yard shaft could send ; Each held a boar-spear tough and strong, And at their belts their quisers rung. Their dusty palfreys and array Showed they had marched a weary way.
The guards their morrice-pikes advanced,
The trumpets flourished brave, The cannon from the ramparts glanced,
And thundering welcome gave. A blithe salute, in martial sort,
The minstrels well might sound, For, as Lord Marmion crossed the court,
He scattered angels round. “Welcome to Norham, Marmion !
Stout heart and open hand ! Well dost thou brook thy gallant roar.,
Thou flower of English land!” Two pursuivants, whom tabards deck, With silver scutcheon round their neck,
Stood on the steps of stone
They hailed Lord Marmion :
Of Tamworth tower and town ;
weight, All as he lighted down. “Now, largesse, largesse, Lord Marmion,
Knight of the crest of gold !
Ne'er guarded heart so bold.”
Where the guests stood all aside, And loudly flourished the trumpet-call,
And the heralds loudly cried, “Room, lordlings, room for Lord Mar
In the lists at Cottiswold :
'Gainst Marmion's force to stand ; To him he lost his lady-love,
Ang the king his land. Ourselves beheld the listed field,
A sight both sad and fair ;
We saw Lord Marmion pierce his shield,
And saw his saddle bare ;
He wears with worthy pride,
His foeman's scutcheon tied.
Room, room, ye gentles gay.
Marmion of Fontenaye!”
Then stepped, to meet that noble lord,
Sir Hugh the Heron bold,
And Captain of the Hold ;
Raised o'er the pavement high,
They feasted full and high :
And Hardriding Dick,
the Wall, Have set on Sir Albany Featherston
haugh, And taken his life at the Dead-man's
shaw." Scantly Lord Marmion's ear could
brook The harper's barbarous lay, Yet much he praised the pains he took,
And well those pains did pay ;
Of your fair courtesy,
In this poor tower with me.
May breathe your war-horse well ;
Or feat of arms befell.
*nd love to couch a spear Saint George ! a stirring life they lead
That have such neighbors near !
Our Northern wars to learn ;
Lord Marmion's brow grew stern.
And crowned it high with wine. “ Now pledge me here, Lord Marmion ;
But first I pray thee fair, Where hast thou left that page of thine That used to serve thy cup of wine,
Whose beauty was so rare ? When last in Raby-towers we met,
The bov I closely eyed,
With tears he fain would hide.
Or saddle battle-steed,
The slender silk to lead ;
His bosom-when he sighed,
Could scarce repel its pride!
To serve in lady's bower ?
A gentle paramour ?
He rolled his kindling eye, With pain his rising wrath suppressed,
Yet made a calm reply ; " That boy thou thought so goodly fair, He might not brook the Northern air. More of his fate if thou wouldst learn, I left him sick in Lindisfarne. Enough of him.-But, Heron, say, Why does thy lovely lady gay Disdain to grace the hall to-day ? Or has that dame, so fair and sage, Gone on some pious pilgrimage? He spoke in covert scorn,
for fame Whispered light tales of Heron's dame. Unmarked, at least unrecked, the taunt,
Careless the knight replied :
Delights in cage to bide ;
And many a darksome tower,
In fair Queen Margaret's bower. We hold our greyhound in our hand,
Our falcon on our glove, But where shall we find leash or band
For dame that loves to rove? Let the wild falcon soar her swing, She 'll stoop when she has tried her
The Captain marked his altered look,
And gave the squire the sign ; A mighty wassail-bowl he took,
Nay, if with Royal James's bride The lovely Lady Heron bide, Behold me here a messenger, Your tender greetings prompt to bear ; For, to the Scottish court addressed, I journey at our king's behest, And pray you, of your grace, provide For me and mine a trusty guide. I hare not ridden in Scotland since James backed the cause of that mock
prince, Warbeck, that Flemish counterfeit, Who on the gibbet paid the cheat. Then did I march with Surrey's power, What time we razed old Ayton tower.""For such-like need, my lord, I trow, Norham can find you guides enow; For here be some have pricked as far On Scottish grounds as to Dunbar, Have drunk the monks of Saint
Bethan's ale, And driven the beeves of Lauderdale, Harried the wives of Greenlaw's goods, And given them light to set their
And prayed for our success the while.
Nephew," quoth Heron, “ by my fay, Well hast thou spoke ; say forth thy
** Now, in good sooth,” Lord Marmion
cried, ** Were I in warlike-wise to ride, A better guard I would not lack Than your stout forayers at my back; But as in form of peace I go, A friendly messenger, to know, Why, through all Scotland, near and
far, Their king is mustering troops for war, The sight of plundering Border spears Might justify suspicious fears, And deadly feud or thirst of spoil Break out in some unseemly broil. A herald were my fitting guide ; Or friar, sworn in peace to bide ; Or pardoner, or travelling priest, Or strolling pilgrim, at the least." The Captain mused a little space, And passed his hand across his face.• Fain would I find the guide you want, But ill may spare a pursuivant, The only men that safe can ride Mine errands on the Scottish side : And though a bishop built this fort, Few holy brethren here resort; Even our good chaplain, as I ween, Since our last siege we have not seen, The mass he might not sing or say Upon one stinted meal a day : So, safe he sat in Durham aisle,
Here is a holy Palmer come, From Salem first, and last from Rome : One that hath kissed the blessed tomb, And visited each holy shrine In Araby and Palestine ;