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6. The daughter of a neighbouring Knight
“ Did any fond heart engage ; 66 And ne'er did Heaven the virtues write
Upon a fairer page.
" His bosom felt an equal wound,
“ Nor sighed we long in vain : « One summer's fun beheld us bound
“ In Hymen's holy chain.
“ Thou waft Sir Eldren's only child,
Thy father's darling joy ; " On me a lovely daughter smil'd;
« On me a blooming boy.
But man has woes, has clouds of care,
That dim his star of life" My arms receiv'd the little pair, 6. The earth's cold breath
« Forgive thou gentle Knight, forgive,
6. Fond fooliin tears will flow; 6 One day like mine thy heart may have,
And mourn its lot of woe.
“ But grant, kind Heaven ! thou ne'er may'st know ". The pangs
now impart ; « Nor ever feel the deadly blow
66 That rives a husband's heart.
“ Beside the blooming banks of Tay,
" My angel's ashes fleep; 66 And wherefore should her ARDOLPH ftay,
“ Except to watch and weep?
" I bore
beauteous babes away “ With many a gushing tear, “ I left the blooming banks of Tay,
" And brought my darlings here.
" I watch'd my little houshold cares,
“ And form their growing youth; " And fondly train’d their infant years
" To love and cherish truth."
“ Thy blooming Birth, here I see,"
Sir Eldred strait rejoin'd; " But why the son is not with thee,
“ Resolve my doubting mind.” When Birtha did the question hear,
She figh'd but could not speak; And
many a soft and silent tear, Stray'd down her damask cheek. Then pass'd o'er good Sir ARDOLPH's face,
A cast of deadly pale ;
He thus renew'd his tale.
“ For him my heart too much has bled,
« for him, my darling son, “ Has sorrow preft my hoary head ;
“ But Heav'n's high will be done ; “ Scarce eighteen winters had revolvid,
6. To crown the circling year, • Before my valiant boy resolv'd
“ The warrior's lance to bear.
“ Too high I priz'd my native land,
6. Too dear his fame I held, « T'oppose a parent's stern command,
“ And keep him from the field,
" He left me-left his fifter too,
6. Yet tears bedew'd his face« What could a feeble old man do?
“ He burst from my embrace.
* (thirst of glory, fatal Alame?
« O laurels dearly bought! “ Yet sweet is death when earn'd with fame
« So virtuous Edwy thought.
« Full manfully the brave boy ftrove,
" Tho' pressing ranks oppose; "But weak the Itrongest arm must prove
Against an host of focs.
“ A deadly wound my son receives,
« A spear affails his side : " Grief does not kill--for ARDOLPH lives
i To tell that Edwy died.
“ His long lov'd mother died again
• In Eowy's parting groan; “ I wept for her, yet wept in vain
“ I wept for both in one.
" I would have died—I fought to die ;
“ But Heaven restrain'd the thought, “ And to my passion clouded eye
“ My helpless Birtha brought. “ When lo ! array'd in robes of light,
" A nymph celestial came ; " She cleard the mists that dimm'd my sight
66 RelIGION was her name.
« She prov'd the chastisement divine,
" And bade me kiss the rod; « She taight this rebel heart of mine
66 Submission to its God.
• Religion taught me to sustain
" What nature bad me feel; “ And piety reliev'd the pain
66 Which time can never heal.
He ceas'd-with sorrow and delight
The tale Sir ELDRED hears, Then
weeping cries --" Thou noble Knight “ For thanks accept my tears.
“ O ARDOLPH, might I dare aspire
“ To claim so bright a boon i « Good old Sir ELDRED was my fire
“ And thou haft loft a son.
“ My trembling tongue its aid denies ;
" For thou may'st disapprove ; 6. Then read it in
eyes, « Oh! read the tale of love.
“ Thy beauteous BirTHA!”. «« Gracious Power,
6 How could I e'er repine,” Cries ARDOLPH, “ since I see this hour?
" YesBIRTHA shall be thine.”
A little transient gleam of red
Shot faintly o’er her face,
The tender father kindly smil'd
With fulness of content,
Who, bashful, blush'd consent.
O then to paint the vast delight
That fill'd Sir ELDRED's heart, To tell the transports of the Knight,
Wou'd mock the Muse's art.
But every kind and gracious soul,
Where gentle passions dwell, Will better far conceive the whole,
Than any Muse can tell.
The more the Knight his Birtha knew,
The more he priz'd the maid ; Some worth each day produc'd to view,
Some grace each hour betray'd.
The virgin too was fond to charm
The dear accomplish'a Youth; His fingle breaft she strove to warm,
And crown'd, with, love his truth,
Unlike the dames of modern days,
Who general homage claim, Who court the universal gaze,
And pant for public fame.
Then Beauty but on merit smil'd,
Nor were her chaite smiles sold; No venal father gave his child
For grandeur or for gold.