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On stones reversed in crumbling mould,
And could there be in lovers meeting And blacken'd poles of bier decay'd
More powerful chords to move the mind, That lumbering on the ground were laid ;
Fond heart to heart responsive beating, On sculptured wrecks, defaced and old,
Than in that tender hour, pure, pious love entwined. And shreds of painted 'scutcheons torn
in pointed lozenge spread, The pillar'd church aloft had worn;
Thus, night succeeding night, her love While new-swept nook and lowly bed,
Did its unwearied nature prove, Strange sight in such a place!
Tender and fearless; till, obscured by crimes, Betray'd a piteous case,
Again so darkly lower'd the changeful times, Man from man's converse torn, the living with the That her good sire, though shut from light of day, dead.
Might in that lowly den no longer stay.
From Edinbrough town a courier came, Produced with looks of kind inviting,
And round him flock'd the castle's dame, Her hands with busy kindness spread ;
Children and servants, young and old. And he her kindly care requiting,
“ What news? what news ? thy visage sad fell to with thanks and relish keen,
| Betrays too plainly tidings bad.” Nodded and quaff”d her health between,
And so it did; alas ! sad was the tale he told. While she his glee return'd, her smiles with tears “ From the oppressor's deadly hate uniting.
Good Jerviswood has met his fate No lordling at his banquet rare
Upon the lofty scaffold, where E’er tasted such delicious fare;
He bore himself with dauntless air ; No beauty on her silken seat,
Albeit, with mortal sickness spent, With lover kneeling at her feet,
Upon a woman's arm he leant. E’er wept and smiled by turns with smiles so fondly From earth to heaven at yestere’en he went.” sweet.
In silence deep the listeners stood,
An instant horror chill'd their blood. Spreads joy unmix'd o’er every feature,
The lady groan'd, and turn'd aside As she her tale is archly telling
Her fears and troubled thoughts to hide. Of feuds within their busy dwelling,
The children wept, then went to play; While, round the savoury table sitting,
The seryants cried “ “Awaladay ! She gleans his meal, the rest unwitting,
But 0! what inward sights, which borrow How she, their open eyes deceiving,
The forms that are not, changing still, So dexterous has become in thieving.
Like shadows on a broken rill, She tells, how of some trifle prating,
Were blended with our damsel's sorrow ! She stirs them all to keen debating,
Those lips, those eyes so sweetly mild, While into napkin'd lap she's sliding
That bless'd her as a humble child; Her portion, oft renew'd, and hiding,
The block in sable, deadly trim, Beneath the board, her store ; amazing
The kneeling form, the headsman grim, Her jealous Frere, oft on her gazing.
The sever'd head with life-blood streaming, Then with his voice and eager eye,
Were ever 'thwart her fancy gleaming. She speaks in harmless mimickry.
Her father, too, in perilous state, “Mother! was e'er the like beheld?
He may be seized, and like his friend Some wolf possesses our Griseld ;
Upon the fatal scaffold bend. She clears her dish, as I'm a sinner!
May Heaven preserve him still from such a dreadLike ploughman at his new-year's dinner.”
And then she thought, if this must be,
Who, honour'd sire, will wait on thee,
And serve thy wants with decent pride, Had best in sport or lesson done,
Like Baillie's kinswoman, subduing fear She fail'd not to repeat;
With fearless love, thy last sad scene to cheer, Though sorry tales they might appear
E'en on the scaffold standing by thy side? To a fastidious critic's ear,
A friend like his, dear father, thou shalt have, They were to him most sweet.
To serve thee to the last, and linger round thy grave.
To join her hapless lord, the dame
XXXI. With all her numerous family came;
And well, with ready hand and heart, And found asylum, where th' opprest
Each task of toilsome duty taking, Of Scotland's patriot sons had rest,
Did one dear inmate play her part, Like sea fowl clustering in the rock
The last asleep, the earliest waking.
Her hands each nightly couch prepared,
And frugal meal on which they fared :
Unfolding spread the servet white, Word incorrect! it was not so:
And deck'd the board with tankard bright. For one, the youngest child, confined
Through fretted hose and garment rent, With fell disease, was left behind;
Her tiny needle deftly went, While certain things, as thus by stealth
Till hateful penury, so graced, They ded, regarding worldly wealth
Was scarcely in their dwelling traced. Of much import, were left undone;
With reverence to the old she clung, And who will now that peril run,
With sweet affection to the young. Again to visit Scotland's shore,
To her was crabbed lesson said, From whence they did in fear depart,
To her the sly petition made, And to each parent's yearning heart
To her was told each petty care ; The darling child restore?
By her was lisp'd the tardy prayer,
What time the urchin, half undrest
And half asleep, was put to rest.
XXXII. 0! who but she, whose bosom swellid
There is a sight all hearts beguiling.-With feelings high, whose self-devotion
A youthful mother to her infant smiling, Follow'd each generous, strong emotion,
Who, with spread arms and dancing feet, The young, the sweet, the good, the brave Griseld. And cooing voice, returns its answer sweet.
Who does not love to see the grandame mild, XXVIII.
Lesson with yearning looks the listening child? Yes; she again cross'd o'er the main,
But 'tis a thing of saintlier nature, And things of moment left undone,
Amidst her friends of pigmy stature, Though o'er her head had scarcely run
To see the maid in youth's fair bloom, Her nineteenth year, no whit deluded
A guardian sister's charge assume, By wily fraud, she there concluded,
And, like a touch of angel's bliss,
Receive from each its grateful kiss.
To see them, when their hour of love is past, But when she reach'd the Belgian strand,
Aside their grave demeanour cast.
With her in mimic war they wrestle ; Hard was her lot. Fast fell the rain,
Beneath her twisted robe they nestle; And there lay many miles of land,
Upon her glowing cheek they revel, A stranger's land, ere she might gain
Low bended to their tiny level; The nearest town. With hardship crost,
While oft, her lovely neck bestriding The wayward child its shoes had lost;
Crows some arch imp, like huntsman riding. Their coin was spent, their garments light,
This is a sight the coldest heart may feel ;And dark and dreary was the night.
To make down rugged cheeks the kindly tear to steal. Then like some gipsy girl on desert moor, Her helpless charge upon her back she bore.
XXXIII. Who then had guess'd that figure slight,
But when the toilsome sun was set, So bending in such humble plight,
And evening groups together met, Was one of proud and gentle race,
(For other strangers shelter'd there Possessing all that well became
Would seek with them to lighten care,) Th' accomplish'd maid or high-born dame,
Her feet still in the dance moved lightest, Befitting princely hall or monarch's court to grace ? | Her eye with merry glance beam'd brightest,
Her braided locks were coil'd the neatest,
Her carol song was thrill'd the sweetest;
And round the fire, in winter cold,
No archer tale than hers was told.
0! spirits gay, and kindly heart ! Was shed upon their generous maid :
Precious the blessings ye impart! And though the inmates of a humble home, Though all unwittingly the while, To which they had as wretched outlaws come, Ye make the pining exile smile, Though hard their alter'd lot might be,
And transient gladness charm his pain, In crowded city pent,
Who ne'er shall see his home again. They lived with mind and body free
Ye make the stern misanthrope's brow In grateful, quiet content.
With tint of passing kindness glow,
And age spring from his elbow-chair
And with those worthies, 'twas a happy doom The sport of lightsome glee to share.
Right fairly earn'd, embark'd, Sir Patrick Hume. Thus did our joyous maid bestow
Their feet, though long at sea, and tempest-tost, Her beamy soul on want and wo;
In bappy hour at last arrived on England's coast. While proud, poor men, in threadbare suit,
Meantime his dame and our fair maid
Still on the coast of Holland stay'd,
With anxious and misgiving minds,
Listening the sound of warring winds:
The ocean rose with deafening roar, If I record her harmless pride,
And beat upon the trembling shore, Who sacrificed the hours of sleep,
Whilst breakers dash'd their whitening spray Some show of better times to keep;
O'er mound and dyke with angry bray, That, though as humble soldier dight,
As if it would ingulf again
Oft on the beach our damsel stood
Midst groups of many a fearful wight, Was found, who late had cross'd the sea,
Who view'd, like her, the billowy flood, The son of virtuous Jerviswood,
Silent and sad, with visage shrunk and white, Who did as common sentry wait
While bloated corse and splinter'd mast, Before a foreign prince's gate.
And bale and cask on shore were cast, And if his eye, oft on the watch,
A sad and rueful sight! One look of sweet Griseld might catch,
But when, at the Almighty will, It was to him no dull nor irksome state.
The tempest ceased, and sea was still,
From Britain's isle glad tidings came,
Received with loud and long acclaim.
But joy appears with shrouded head
To those who sorrow o'er the dead ; By Heaven's high will to make the light
For, struck with sore disease, while there Of future skies appear more bright.
They tarried pent in noisome air, And thus, at lowest ebb, man's thoughts are oft | The sister of her heart, whom she elated.
Had watch'd and tended lovingly, He deems not that the very struggle
Like blighted branch whose blossoms fade, Of active virtue, and the war
That day was in her coffin laid. She bravely holds with present ill,
She heard the chimed bells loudly ringing, Sustain'd by hope, does by the skill
She heard the caroll'd triumph singing,
And clamorous throng, and shouting boys,
Howbeit, her grief at length gives way A recollection, fondly bent,
To happier thoughts, as dawns the day
In royal Mary's gentle train,
To join, ere long, the dearest to her heart,
They soon their own fair island hail'd,
As on the rippling sea they sail'd.
Ye well may guess their joyful cry,
With upraised hands and glistening eye,
When, rising from the ocean blue, For he, the prince of glorious memory,
Her chalky cliffs first met their view, The prince, who shall, as passing ages fly,
Whose white verge on th' horizon rear'd,
Like wall of noonday clouds appear'd.
And outward signs of joy we know.
Gilding the scope of duller days
And from afar, her wistful eye With oft-recurring retrospect,
Would first his graceful form descry. With which right happily she plays.
E'en when he hied him forth to meet E’en as a moving mirror will reflect
The open air in lawn or street, Its glancing rays on shady side
She to her casement went, Of home or glen, when school-boys guide
And after him, with smile so sweet, With skilful hands their mimic sun
Her look of blessing sent. To heaven's bright sun opposed; we see
The heart's affection,-secret thing! Its borrow'd sheen on fallow dun,
Is like the cleft rock's ceaseless spring, On meadow green, on rock and tree,
Which free and independent flows On broomy steep, on rippling spring,
Of summer rains or winter snows. On cottage thatch, and every thing.
The foxglove from its side may fall
The heathbloom fade or moss-flower white,
But still its runlet, bright though small,
Will issue sweetly to the light.
How long an honour'd and a happy pair,
They held their seemly state in mansion fair, Or tendril to the fostering stock,
I will not here in chiming verses say, Or seaweed on the briny rock,
To tire my reader with a lengthen'd lay ; Or mistletoe to sacred tree,
For tranquil bliss is as a summer day Or daisy to the swarded lea,
O'er broad Savana shining; fair it lies,
And rich the trackless scene, but soon our eyes,
But no new ties of wedded life,
That bind the mother and the wife, When woo'd by one of wealth and worth,
Her tender, filial heart could change, The neighbour of her happy home,
Or from its earliest friends estrange. Though by her gentle parents press'd
The child, by strong affection led, And flattered, courted and caress'd,
Who braved her terror of the dead A splendid bride become.
To save an outlaw'd parent, still “ I may not,” said her gentle heart,
In age was subject to his will. “ The very thought endure,
She then was seen with matron air, That those so kind should feel the smart
A dame of years, with countenance fair, A daughter's wants might oft impart,
Though faded, sitting by his easy chair. For Jerviswood is poor.
A sight that might the heart's best feelings move ! But yet, though poor, why should I smother
Behold her seated at her task of love! This dear regard? he'll be my brother,
Books, papers, pencil, pen, and slate, And thus through life we'll love each other.
And column'd scrolls of ancient date, What though, as changing years fit by,
Before her lie, on which she looks Gray grow my head, and dim his eye!
With searching glance, and gladly brooks We'll meekly bear our wayward fate,
An irksome task, that else might vex And scorn their petty spite who rate,
His temper, or his brain perplex; With senseless gibes, the single state,
While, haply, on the matted floor, Till we are join'd, at last, in heavenly bliss on
Close nestling at her kirtled feet,
Its lap enrich'd with childish store,
Sits, hush'd and still, a grandchild sweet,
Who looks at times with eye intent, The father of the virtuous youth,
Full on its grandame's parent bent, Who died devoted for the truth,
Viewing his deeply-furrow'd brow, Was not, when better times return'd, forgot:
And sunken lip and locks of snow, To the right heir was given his father's land,
In serious wonderment. And with his lady's love, he won her hand.
Well said that graceful sire, I ween!
Still through life's many a varied scene,
Griseld our dear and helpful child hath been. Their long tried faith in honour plighted,
In its full zest the present blessing,
Her grateful heart remembrance cherish'd Her ear first caught his distant voice,
Of all to former happiness allied,
Nor in her fostering fancy perish'd
She would not e'en their folly chide,
But like the sun and showers of heaven,
But soon, from fear of future change,
The northern farmers, spoil'd and bare,
No more could rent or produce spare
To the soil's lords. All were distress'd, The door, the windows, every thing
And on our noble dame this evil sorely press'd. Which to her back-cast thoughts could bring Her household numerous, her means withheld; The scenes of other days. Then she applied Shall she her helpless servants now dismiss To knocker bright her thrilling hand,
To rob or starve, in such a time as this, And begg'd, as strangers in the land,
Or wrong to others do ? but nothing quell'd Admittance from the household dame,
Her calm and upright mind.—“Go, summon here And thus preferred her gentle claim :
Those who have served me many a year." “ This house was once my happy home,
The summons went; each lowly name Its rooms, its stair, I fain would see;
Full swiftly to her presence came, Its meanest nook is dear to me,
And thus she spoke: “ Ye've served me long, Let me and mine within its threshold come.” Pure, as I think, from fraud or wrong, But no ; this might not be !
And now, my friendly neighbours, true Their feet might soil her polish'd floor,
And simply I will deal with you. The dame held fast the hostile door,
The times are shrewd, my treasures spent, A Belgian housewife she.
My farms have ceased to yield me rent; “ Fear not such harm! we'll doff our shoes : And it may chance that rent or grain Do not our earnest suit refuse !
I never shall receive again. We'll give thee thanks, we'll give thee gold ;
The dainties which my table fed, Do not kind courtesy withhold !”
Will now be changed for daily bread, But still it might not be ;
Dealt sparely, and for this I must The dull, unpliant dame refused her gentle plea.
Be debtor to your patient trust,
If ye consent.”—Swift through the hall,
With eager haste, spoke one and all.
“No, noble dame! this must not be ! Sweet union held of mated will,
With heart as warm and hand as free,
Still thee and thine we'll serve with pride,
The best of all our stores afford
Shall daily smoke upon thy board;
She bent her head with courtesy,
The big tear swelling in her eye,
And thank'd them all. Yet plain and spare, LIII.
She order'd still her household fare, But whatsoe'er the weal or wo
Till fortune's better die was cast,
And adverse times were past.
And weight of mortal cares to free, For Stuart's dynasty to fight,
It was a blessed sight to see, Distress to many a family came,
The parting saint her state of honour keeping Who dreaded more the approaching shame In gifted, dauntless faith, whilst round her, weeping, Of penury's ill-favour'd mien,
Her children's children mourn'd on bended knee. Than e'en the pang of hunger keen. How softly then her pity flow'd !
LVI. How freely then her hand bestow'd !
In London's fair imperial town She did not question their opinion
She laid her earthly burden down. Of party, kingship, or dominion :
In Mellerstain, her northern home,