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Because, despite her precept dread,

Stood in the midst, with gesture proud, Perchance he in the book had read;

And issued forth his mandates loud. But the broken lance in his bosom stood,

“ On Penchryst glows a bale of fire, And it was earthly steel and wood.

And three are kindling on Priesthaughswire ;

Ride out, ride out,
XXIII.

The soe to scout,
She drew the splinter from the wound,

Mount, mount, for Branksome,* every man!
And with a charm she stanch'd the blood : Thou, Todrig, warn the Johnstone clan,
She bade the gash be cleansed and bound;

That ever are true and stout.
No longer by his couch she stood;

Ye need not send to Liddesdale; But she has ta'en the broken lance,

| For, when they see the blazing bale, And wash'd it from the clotted gore,

Elliots and Armstrongs never fail. And salved the splinter o'er and o’er.

Ride, Alton, ride, for death and life! William of Deloraine, in trance,

And warn the warden of the strise.
Whene'er she turn'd it round and round, Young Gilbert, let our beacon blaze.
Twisted, as if she gall’d his wound.

Our kin, and clan, and friends to raise."
Then to her maidens she did say,
That he should be whole man and sound,

XXVIII.
Within the course of a night and day. Fair Margaret, from the turret head,
Full long she toild; for she did rue

Heard far below, the coursers' tread. Mishap to friend so stout and true.

While loud the harness rang,

As to their seats, with clamour dread,
XXIV.

The ready horsemen sprang;
So pass'd the day-the evening fell,

And trampling hoofs, and iron coats, 'Twas near the time of curfew bell;

And leaders' voices, mingled notes, The air was mild, the wind was calm,

And out! and out! The stream was smooth, the dew was balm ;

In hasty route, E’en the rude watchman, on the tower,

The horsemen gallop'd forth; Enjoy'd and bless'd the lovely hour ;

Dispersing to the south to scout, Far more fair Margaret loved and bless'd

And east, and west, and north, The hour of silence and of rest.

To view their coming enemies,
On the high turret sitting lone,

And warn their vassals and allies.
She waked at times the lute's soft tone;
Touch'd a wild note, and, all between,

XXIX.
Thought of the bower of hawthorns green. The ready page, with hurried hand
Her golden hair stream'd free from band,

Awaked the need-fire'st slumbering brand, Her fair cheek rested on her hand,

And ruddy blush'd the heaven : Her blue eyes sought the west afar,

For a sheet of name, from the turret high, For lovers love the western star.

Waved like a blood-Aag on the sky,

All flaring and uneven.
XXV.

And soon a score of fires, I ween,
Is yon the star, o'er Penchryst Pen,

From height, and hill, and cliff were seen ; That rises slowly to her ken,

Each with warlike tidings fraught; And, spreading broad its wavering light,

Each from each the signal caught; Shakes its loose tresses on the night?

Each after each they glanced to sight, Is yon red glare the western star ?

As stars arise upon the night.
O, 'tis the beacon blaze of war!

They gleam'd on many a dusky tarn,
Scarce could she draw her tighten'd breath, Haunted by the lonely earn ;$
For well she knew the fire of death!

On many a cairn's gray pyramid,

Where urns of mighty chiefs lie hid
XXVI.

Till high Dunedin the blazes saw,
The warder view'd it blazing strong:

From Soltra and Dumpender law; And blew his war note loud and long,

And Lothian heard the regent's order,
Till, at the high and haughty sound,

That all should bownell them for the Border.
Rock, wood, and river rung around.
The blast alarm’d the festal hall,

XXX.
And startled forth the warriors all;

The livelong night in Branksome rang Far downward, in the castle-yard,

The ceaseless sound of steel: Full many a torch and cresset glared;

The castle-bell, with backward clang, And helms and plumes, confusedly toss'd,

Sent forth the larum peel; Were in the blaze half seen, half lost;

Was frequent heard the heavy jar,
And spears in wild disorder shook,

Where massy stone and iron bar
Like reeds beside a frozen brook.
XXVII.

* Mount for Branksome was the gathering word of the Scotis.

Need-fire, beacon. The seneschal, whose silver hair

# Tarn, a mountain lake. S Earn, the Scottish eagle. Was redden'd by the torches' glare,

ll Bowne, make ready

Were piled on echoing keep and tower,

Why! when the volleying musket play'd To whelm the foe with deadly shower;

Against the bloody Highland blade, Was frequent heard the changing guard,

Why was I not beside him laid ? And watchword from the sleepless ward;

Enough—he died the death of fame; Wbile, wearied by the endless din,

Enough—he died with conquering Græme! Bloodhound and ban-dog yell’d within.

III.
XXXI.

Now over border, dale, and fell,
The noble dame, amid the broil,

Full wide and far was terror spread; Shared the gray seneschal's high toil,

For pathless march and mountain cell, And spoke of danger with a smile;

The peasant left his lowly shed. Cheer'd the young knights, and council sage

The frighten'd flocks and herds were pent Held with the chiefs of riper age.

Beneath, the peel's rude battlement; No tidings of the foe were brought,

And maids and matrons dropt the tear, Nor of his numbers knew they aught,

While ready warriors seized the spear. Nor in what time the truce he sought.

From Branksome's towers the watchman's eye Some said that there were thousands ten, Dun wreaths of distant smoke can spy, And others ween’d that it was naught,

Which, curling in the rising sun, But Leven clans, or Typedale men,

Show'd southern ravage was begun.
Who came to gather in black mail,*

IV.
And Liddesdale, with small avail,
Might drive them lightly back agen.

Now loud the beedful gateward cried-
So pass'd the anxious night away,

“ Prepare ye all for blows and blood! And welcome was the peep of day.

Wat Tinlinn, from the Liddel-side,

Comes wading through the flood. CEASED the high sound—the listening throng

Full oft the Tynedale snatchers knock Applaud the master of the song ;

At his lone gate, and prove the lock; And marvel much, in helpless age,

It was but last Saint Barnabright So hard should be his pilgrimage.

They sieged him a whole summer night, Had he no friend, no daughter dear,

But fled at morning; well they knew, His wandering toil to share and cheer;

In vain he never twang'd the yew.

Right sharp has been the evening shower, No son, to be his father's stay,

That drove him from his Liddel tower; And guide him on the rugged way? “Ay, once he had—but he was dead !”—

And, by my faith," the gateward said, Upon the harp he stoop'd his head,

“I think 'twill prove a warden-raid."** And busied himself the strings withal,

v. To hide the tear that fain would fall.

While thus he spoke, the bold yeoman In solemn measure, soft and slow,

Enter'd the echoing barbican. Arose a father's notes of wo.

He led a small and shaggy nag,

That through a bog, from hag to hagt
CANTO IV.

Could bound like any Bilhope stag,
I.

It bore his wife and children twain.
SWEET Teviot ! on thy silver tide

A half-clothed serft was all their train : The glaring bale-fires blaze no more ; His wife, stout, ruddy, and dark-brow'd, No longer steel-clad warriors ride

Of silver brooch and bracelet proud, Along thy wild and willow'd shore:

Laugh'd to her friends among the crowd. Where'er thou wind'st, by dale or hill,

He was of stature passing tall,
All, all is peaceful, all is still,

But sparely form'd, and lean withal;
As if thy waves, since time was born, A batter'd morion on his brow;
Since first they roll'd their way to Tweed, A leathern jack, as fence enow,
Had only heard the shepherd's reed,

On his broad shoulders loosely hung;
Nor started at the bugle-horn.

A border axe behind was slung;

His spear, six Scottish ells in length,
II.

Seem'd newly died with gore;
Unlike the tide of human time,

His shafts and bow, of wondrous strength,
Which, though it change in ceaseless flow, His hardy partner bore.
Retains each grief, retains each crime,

VI.
Its earliest course was doom'd to know
And, darker as it downward bears,

Thus to the ladye did Tinlinn show
Is staind with past and present tears.

The tidings of the English foe.Low as that tide has ebb’d with me,

“ Belted Will Howard is marching here, It still reflects to memory's eye

And hot lord Dacre, with many a spear, The hour my brave, my only boy,

And all the German hagbut-men, Fell by the side of great Dundee.

Who long have lain at Askerten :

* An inroad comanded by the warden in person. * Protection money exacted by freebooters.

† The broken ground in a bog. Bondsman.

They cross'd the Liddel at curfew hour,

Albeit the blanch'd locks below And burn'd my little lonely tower;

Were white as Dinlay's spotless snow: The fiend receive their souls therefor!

Five stately warriors drew the sword It had not been burn'd this year and more,

Before their father's band; Barn-yard, and dwelling, blazing bright,

A braver knight than Harden's lord Served to guide me on my flight:

Ne'er belted on a brand.
But I was chased the livelong night.

X.
Black John of Akeshaw, and Fergus Græme,
Full fast upon my traces came,

Scotts of Eskdale, a stalwart band,
Until I turn'd at Priesthaughscrogg,

Came trooping down the Todshawhill; And shot their horses in the bog,

By the sword they won their land, Slew Fergus with my lance outright

And by the sword they hold it still, I had him long at high despite :

Hearken, ladye, to the tale, He drove my cows last Fastern's night.”

How thy sires won fair Eskdale.

Earl Morton was lord of that valley fair,
VII.

The Beattisons were his vassals there.
Now, weary scouts from Liddesdale,

The earl was gentle and mild of mood, Fast hurrying in, confirm’d the tale:

The vassels were warlike, and fierce, and rude ; As far as they could judge by ken,

High of heart, and haughty of word, Three hours would bring to Teviot's strand Little they reck'd of a tame liege lord. Three thousand armed Englishmen.

The earl to fair Eskdale came, Meanwhile, full many a warlike band,

Homage and seignory to claim : From Teviot, Aill, and Ettrick shade,

Of Gilbert the Galliard, a heriot* he sought, Came in their chief's defence to aid.

Saying, “ Give thy best steed, as a vassel ought. There was saddling and mounting in haste, —“ Dear to me is my bonny white steed, There was pricking o'er moor and lee;

Oft has he help'd me at pinch of need; He that was last at the trysting place

Lord and earl though thou be, I trow Was but lightly held of his gay ladye.

I can rein Bucksfoot better than thou.”

Word on word gave fuel to fire,
VIII.

Till so highly blazed the Beattisons' ire,
From fair Saint Mary's silver wave,

But that the earl to flight had ta’en, From dreary Gamescleugh's dusky height, The vassals there their lord had slain. His ready lances Thirlestave brave

Sore he plied both whip and spur, Array'd beneath a banner bright.

As he urged his steed through Eskdale muir; The treasured fleur-de-luce he claims

And it fell down a dreary weight,
To wreath his shield, since royal James,

Just on the threshold of Branksome gate.
Encamp'd by Fala's mossy wave,
The proud distinction grateful gave.

XI.
For faith mid feudal jars;

The earl was a wrathful man to see, What time save Thirlestane alone,

Full fain avenged would he be. Would march to southern wars ;

In haste to Branksome's lord he spoke, And hence in fair remembrance worn

Saying " Take these traitors to thy yoke: Yon sheaf of spears his crest has borne ;

For a cast of hawks, and a purse of gold; Hence his high motto shines reveald

All Eskdale I'll sell thee, to bave and hold: Ready, aye ready,” for the field.

Beshrew thy heart, of the Beattisons' clan

If thou leavest on Esk a landed man:
IX.

But spare Woodkerrick's lands alone,
An aged knight, to danger steeld,

For he lent me his horse to escape upon.”With many a mosstrooper came on:

A glad man then was Branksome bold, And azure in a golden field,

Down he fiung him the purse of gold; The stars and crescent graced his shield,

To Eskdale soon he spurr'd amain, Without the bend of Murdieston.

And with him five hundred riders has ta'en. Wide lay his hands round Oakwood tower, He left his merryman in the midst of the hill, And wide round haunted Castle Ower;

And bade them hold them close and still ; High over Borthwick's mountain flood,

And alone he wended to the plain, His wood-embosom'd mansion stood;

To meet with the Galliard and all his train. In the dark glen so deep below,

To Gilbert the Galliard thus he said :The herds of plunderd England low,

“Know thou me for thy liege lord and head : His bold retainers' daily food,

Deal not with me as with Morton tame, And bought with danger, blows, and blood. For Scots play best at the roughest game. Marauding chief! his sole delight

Give me in peace my heriot due,
The moonlight raid, the morning fight;

Thy bonny white steed, or thou shalt rue.
Not even the flower of Yarrow's charms
In youth might tame his rage for arms ;

* The feudal superior, in certain cases, was entitled to And still, in age, he spurn'd at rest,

the best horse of the vassal, in name of Heriot, or HereAnd still his brows the helmet press'd,

zeld.

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If my horn I three times wind,

Wat Tinlinn, thou shalt be his guide
Eskdale shall long have the sound in mind.” To Rangleburn's lonely side-

Sure some fell fiend has cursed our line,
XII.

That coward should e'er be son of mine!"
Loudly the Beattison laugh'd in scorn :-
“ Little care we for thy winded horn.

XV. Ne'er shall it be the Galliard's lot,

A heavy task Wat Tinlinn had, To yield his steed to a haughty Scott.

To guide the counterfeited lad, Wend thou to Branksome back on foot,

Soon as the palfrey felt the weight With rusty spur and miry boot.”

Of that ill-omen'd elfish freight, He blew his bugle so loud and hoarse,

He bolted, sprung, and rear'd amain, That the dun deer started at far Craikcross;

Nor heeded bit, nor curb, nor rein. He blew again so loud and clear,

It cost Wat Tinlinn mickle toil Through the gray mountain mist there did lances to drive him but a Scottish mile ; appear ;

But, as a shallow brook they cross'd, And the third blast wrung with such a din,

The elf, amid the running stream, That the echoes answer'd from Pentoun-linn,

His figure changed, like form, in dream, And all his riders came lightly in.

And fied, and shouted, “ Lost! lost! lost!" Then had you seen a gallant shock,

Full fast the urchin ran and laugh’d, When saddles were emptied, and lances broke!

But faster still a cloth yard shaft For each scornful word the Galliard had said,

Whistled from startled 'Tinlinn's yew, A Beattison on the field was laid.

And pierced his shoulder through and through. His own good sword the chieftain drew,

Although the imp might not be slain, And he bore the Galliard through and through ;

And though the wound soon beal'd again, Where the Beattisons' blood mix'd with the rill,

Yet, as he ran, he yell’d for pain; The Galliard's Haugh, men call it still.

And Wat of Tinlinn, much aghast,
The Scotts have scatter'd the Beattison clan.

Rode back to Branksome fiery fast.
In Eskdale they left but one landed man.
The valley of Esk, from the mouth to the source,

XVI.
Was lost and won for that bonny white horse. Soon on the hill's steep verge he stood,
XIII.

That looks o'er Branksome's towers and wood: Whitslade the Hawk, and Headshaw came,

And martial murmurs from below, And warriors more than I may name;

Proclaim'd the approaching southern foe. From Yarrow-cleuch to Hindhaug-swair,

Through the dark wood, in mingled tone,

Were Border pipes and bugles blown:
From Woodhouselie to Chester-glen,
Troop'd man and horse, and bow and spear;

The coursers's neighing he could ken,

And measured tread of marching men; Their gathering word was Bellenden.

While broke at times the solemn hum, And better hearts o'er Border sod

The Almayn's sullen kettle-drum; To siege or rescue never rode.

And banners tall, of crimson sheen,
The ladye mark'd the aids come in,

Above the copse appear;
And high her heart of pride arose :
She bade her youthful son attend,

And, glistening through the hawthorns green, That he night know his father's friend,

Shine helm, and shield, and spear. And learn to face his foes.

XVII. “ The boy is ripe to look on war; I saw him draw a cross-bow stiff,

Light forayers first, to view the ground, And his true arrow struck afar

Spurr’d their fleet coursers loosely round; The raven's nest upon the cliff;

Behind, in close array and fast, The red cross on a southern breast,

The Kendal archers, all in green, Is broader than the raven's nest:

(wield,

Obedient to the bugle blast, Thou, Whitslade, shall teach him his weapon to

Advancing from the wood were seen.

To back and guard the archer band,
And over him hold his father's shield.”

Lord Dacre's bill-men were at hand:
XIV.

A hardy race, on Irthing bred,
Well may you think, the wily page

With kirtles white, and crosses red, Cared not to face the ladye sage.

Array'd beneath the banners tall, He counterfeited childish fear,

That stream'd o'er Acre's conquer'd wall. And shriek'd, and shed full many a tear,

And minstrels as they march'd in order, And moan'd and plain'd in manner wild. Play'd, “Noble Lord Dacre, he dwells on the The attendants to the ladye told,

Border."
Some fairy, sure, had changed the child,

XVIII.
That wont to be so free and bold.
Then wrathful was the noble dame;

Behind the English bill and bow,
She blush'd blood-red for very shame:-

The mercenaries, firm and slow, · Hence! ere the clan his faintness view;

Moved on to fight in dark array, Hence with the weakling to Buccleuch

By Conrad led of Wolfenstein.

Who brought the band from distant Rhine,

XXII. And sold their blood for foreign pay;

“ Ye English warden lords, of you The camp their home, their law the sword,

Demands the ladye of Buccleuch,
They knew no country, own'd no lord.

Why, 'gainst the truce of Border tide,
They were not arm'd like England's sons,
But bore the levin-darting guns ;

In hostile guise ye dare to ride,

With Kendal bow, and Gilsland brand,
Buff coats, all frounced and 'broider'd o'er,

And all yon mercenary band,
And morsing-horns* and scarfs they wore;
Each better knee was bared, to aid

Upon the bounds of fair Scotland ?

My ladye redes you swithe return; The warriors in the escalade :

And, if but one poor straw you burn, And, as they march'd in rugged tongue,

Or do our towers so much molest,
Songs of Teutonic feuds they sung.

As scare one swallow from her nest,
XIX.

Saint Mary! but we'll light a brand,

Shall warm your hearths in Cumberland.” But louder still the clamour gew, And louder still the minstrels blew,

XXIII. When, from beneath the greenwood tree,

A wrathful man was Dacre's lord, Rode forth Lord Howard's chivalry ;

But calmer Howard took the word: His men at arms, with glaive and spear,

“May't please thy dame, sir seneschal, Brought up the battle's glittering rear.

To seek the castle's outward wall, There many a youthful knight, full keen

Our pursuivant-at-arms shall show, To gain his spurs, in arms was seen ;

Both why we came, and when we go.” With favour in his crest, or glove,

The message sped, the noble dame Memorial of his ladye-love.

To the wall's outward circle came; So rode they forth in fair array,

Each chief around lean'd on his spear Till full their lengthen'd lines display ;

To see the pursuivant appear. Then call’d a halt, and made a stand,

All in Lord Howard's livery dressid,
And cried, “ Saint George for merry England !" The lion argent deck'd his breast;

He led a boy of blooming hue-
XX.

O sight to meet a mother's view !
Now every English eye, intent,

It was the heir of great Buccleuch. On Branksome's armed towers was bent:

Obeisance meet the herald made, So near they were, that they might know

And thus his master's will he said:
The straining harsh of each cross bow;

XXIV.
On battlement and bartizan
Gleam'd axe, and spear, and partizan ;

“ It irks, high dame, my noble lords, Falcon and culver,t on each tower,

'Gainst ladye fair to draw their swords ; Stood prompt their deadly hail to shower;

But yet they may not tamely see, And Aashing armour frequent broke

All through the western wardenry,

Your law-contemning kinsmen ride,
From eddying whirls of sable smoke,

And burn and spoil the Border-side ;
Where, upon tower and turret head,
The seathing pitch and molten lead

And ill beseems your rank and birth
Reek'a, like a witch's cauldron red.

To make your towers a flemen's firth.* While yet they gaze, the bridges fall,

We claim from thee William of Deloraine, The wicket opes, and from the wall

That he may suffer march-treason pain ; Rides forth the hoary seneschal.

It was but last Saint Cuthbert's even
He prick'd to Stapleton on Leven,

Harriedt the lands of Richard Musgrave,
XXI.

And slew his brother by dint of glaive. Armed he rode, all save the head,

Then, since a lone and widow'd dame His white beard o’er his breastplate spread; These restless riders may not tame, Unbroke by age, erect his seat,

Either receive within thy towers He ruled his eager courser's gait;

Two hundred of my master's powers, Forced him, with chasten'd fire, to prance, Or straight they sound their warrison ;! And, high curvetting, slow advance:

And storm and spoil thy garrison ; In sign of truce, his better hand

And this fair boy, to London led, Display'd a peeled willow wand;

Shall good king Edward's page be bred.” His squire, attending in the rear, Bore high a gauntlet on a spear.

XXV. When they espied him riding out,

He ceased :—and loud the boy did cry,– Lord Howard and Lord Dacre stout

And stretch'd his little arms on high ; Sped to the front of their array,

Implored for aid each well-known face, To hear what this old knight should say.

And strove to seek the dame's embrace.

[graphic]

† Plundered.

* Powder flasks.
† Ancient pieces of Artillery.

* An asylum for outlaws.
# Nole of assault.

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