Imágenes de páginas

I thrill with anguish! or, if e'er

A Douglas knew the word, with fear.
To change such odious theme were best,
What think'st thou of our stranger guest?"


"What think I of him?-woe the while
That brought such wanderer to our isle!
Thy father's battle brand, of yore
For Tine-man forged by fairy lore,
What time he leagued, no longer foes,
His Border spears with Hotspur's bows,
Did, self-unscabbarded, foreshow
The footstep of a secret foe.

If courtly spy, and harbour'd here,
What may we for the Douglas fear?
What for this island, deem'd of old
Clan-Alpine's last and surest hold?
If neither spy nor foe, I pray

What yet may jealous Roderick say?—
Nay, wave not thy disdainful head!
Bethink thee of the discord dread,
That kindled when at Beltane game
Thou ledst the dance with Malcolm Græme;
Still, though thy sire the peace renew'd,
Smoulders in Roderick's breast the feud;
Beware! But hark, what sounds are these?
My dull ears catch no faltering breeze,
No weeping birch, nor aspens wake,
Nor breath is dimpling in the lake;
Still is the canna's* hoary beard-
Yet, by my minstrel faith, I heard-


And hark again! some pipe of war
Sends the bold pibroch from afar."-


Far up the lengthen'd lake were spied
Four darkening specks upon the tide,
That, slow enlarging on the view,
Four mann'd and masted barges grew,
And bearing downwards from Glengyle,
Steer'd full upon the lonely isle;
The point of Brianchoil they pass'd,
And to the windward as they cast,
Against the sun they gave to shine,
The bold Sir Roderick's banner'd pine.
Nearer and nearer as they bear,
Spears, spikes, and axes flash in air.
Now might you see the tartans brave,
And plaids and plumage dance and wave;
Now see the bonnets sink and rise,
As his tough oar the rower plies;
See, flashing at each sturdy stroke,
The wave ascending into smoke;
See the proud pipers on the bow,
And mark the gaudy streamers flow
From their loud chanters* down, and sweep
The furrow'd bosom of the deep,

As, rushing through the lake, amain
They plied the ancient Highland strain.


Ever, as on they bore, more loud
And louder rung the pibroch proud.

The drone of the bagpipe.

At first the sounds, by distance tame,
Mellow'd along the waters came,
And, lingering long by cape and bay,
Wail'd every harsher note away:
Then, bursting bolder on the ear,

The clan's shrill Gathering they could hear;
Those thrilling sounds, that call the might
Of old Clan-Alpine to the fight;
Thick beat the rapid notes, as when
The mustering hundreds shake the glen,
And, hurrying at the signal dread,
The batter'd earth returns their tread;
Then prelude light, of livelier tone,
Express'd their merry marching on,
E'er peal of closing battle rose,
With mingled outcry, shrieks, and blows;
And mimic din of stroke and ward,
As broad-sword upon target jarr'd;
And groaning pause, e'er yet again,
Condensed, the battle yell'd amain;
The rapid charge, the rallying shout,
Retreat borne headlong into rout;
And bursts of triumph, to declare
Clan-Alpine's conquest-all were there.
Nor ended thus the strain but slow,
Sunk in a moan prolong'd and low,
And changed the conquering clarion swell,
For wild lament o'er those that fell.


The war-pipes ceased; but lake and hill
Were busy with their echoes still,
And when they slept, a vocal strain
Bade their hoarse chorus wake again,

While loud an hundred clansmen raise
Their voices in their chieftain's praise.
Each boatman, bending to his oar,
With measured sweep the burthen bore,
In such wild cadence, as the breeze
Makes through December's leafless trees:
The chorus first could Allan know,
"Roderigh Vich Alpine, ho! iro!"
And near, and nearer as they row'd,
Distinct the martial ditty flow'd,



Hail to the chief who in triumph advances,
Honour'd and bless'd be the evergreen pine!
Long may the tree in his banner that glances,
Flourish, the shelter and grace of our line!
Heaven send it happy dew,

Earth lend it sap anew,

Gaily to bourgeon, and broadly to grow,
While every highland glen,


Sends our shout back agen,

Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"

'Ours is no sapling, chance-sown by the fountain, Blooming at Beltane, in winter to fade;

When the whirlwind has stripp'd every leaf on the mountain,

The more shall Clan-Alpine exult in her shade.
Moor'd in the rifted rock,

Proof to the tempest's shock,
Firmer he roots him the ruder it blow;

Menteith and Breadalbane, then,
Echo his praise agen,

"Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"


Proudly our pibroch has thrill'd in Glen Fruin,

And Banochar's groans to our slogan replied; Glen Luss and Ross-dhu, they are smoking in ruin, And the best of Loch-Lomond lie dead on her side.

Widow and Saxon maid

Long shall lament our raid,

Think of Clan-Alpine with fear and with woe: Lennox and Leven-glen

Shake when they hear agen,

แ Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"

Row, vassals, row, for the pride of the Highlands!
Stretch to your oars, for the evergreen pine;
O that a rose-bud that graces yon islands,
Were wreath'd in a garland around him to twine!
O that some seedling gem,

Worthy such noble stem,

Honour'd and bless'd in their shadow might grow! Loud should Clan-Alpine then

Ring from her deepmost glen, "Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"


With all her joyful female band,
Had Lady Margaret sought the strand.
Loose on the breeze their tresses flew,
And high their snowy arms they threw,
As echoing back with shrill acclaim,
And chorus wild, the chieftain's name:

« AnteriorContinuar »