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Unwilling takes his proffer'd aid,
Like objects on a stormy tide,
XXXI. "Scarce wert thou gone, when peep of light Brought genuine news of Marston's fight. Brave Cromwell turn'd the doubtful tide, And conquest bless'd the rightful side; Three thousand cavaliers lie dead, Rupert and that bold Marquis fled; Nobles and knights, so proud of late, Must fine for freedom and estate. Of these, committed to my charge, Is Rokeby, prisoner at large; Redmond, his page, arrived to say He reaches Barnard's towers to-day. Right heavy shall his ransom be, Unless that maid compound with thee !" Go to her now-be bold of cheer, While her soul floats 'twixt hope and fear; It is the very change of tide, When best the female heart is tried Pride, prejudice, and modesty, Are in the current swept to sea;" And the bold swain, who plies his oar, May lightly row his bark to shore."
XXX. “Ay_let him range like hasty hound ! And if the grim wolf's lair be found, Small is my care how goes the game With Redmond, or with Risingham.Nay, answer not, thou simple boy! Thy fair Matilda, all so coy To thee, is of another mood To that bold youth of Erin's blood. Thy ditties will she freely praise, And pay thy pains with courtly phrase; In a rough path will oft commandAccept at least—thy friendly hand; His she avoids, or, urged and pray'd,
I. The hunting tribes of air and earth Respect the brethren of their birth ;* Nature, who loves the claim of kind, Less cruel chase to each assign’d. The falcon, poised on soaring wing,
1 " The contrast of the beautiful morning, and the prospect of the rich domain of Mortham, which Oswald was come to seize, with the dark remorse and misery of his mind, is powerfully represented : (Non domus et fundus !" &c. &c.)Monthly Revier.
? See Appendix, Note X.
“Of Mortham's treasure now he dreams,
Now nurses more ambitious schemes," 6 MS._"This Redmond brought, at peep of light,
The news of Marston's happy fight." 6 See Appendix, Note Y. 7 MS." In the warm ebb are swept to sea.”
lower & MS.-" The
tribes of earth and air, meaner
In the wild chase their kindred spare.' The secord couplet in erpolated.
These arts he proved, his life to save,
Watches the wild-duck by the spring;
IV. 'Twas then, in hour of utmost need, He proved his courage, art, and speed. Now slow he stalk'd with stealthy pace, Now started forth in rapid race, Oft doubling back in mazy train, To blind the trace the dews retain: Now clombe the rocks projecting high, To baffle the pursuer's eye; Now sought the stream, whose brawling sound The echo of his footsteps drown'd. But if the forest verge he nears, There trample steeds, and glimmer spears; If deeper down the copse he drew, He heard the rangers' loud halloo, Beating each cover while they came, As if to start the silvan game. 'Twas then-like tiger close beseto At every pass with toil and net, 'Counter'd, where'er he turns his glare, By clashing arms and torches' flare, Who meditates, with furious bound, To burst on hunter, horse, and hound, 'Twas then that Bertram's soul arose, Prompting to rush upon his foes: But as that crouching tiger, cow'd By brandish'd steel and shouting crowd, Retreats beneath the jungle's shroud, Bertram suspends his purpose stern, And couches in the brake and fern, Hiding his face, lest foemen spy The sparkle of his swarthy eye."
III. Oft had he shown, in climes afar, Each attribute of roving war; The sharpen'd ear, the piercing eye, The quick resolve in danger nigh; The speed, that in the flight or chase, Outstripp'd the Charib's rapid race ; The steady brain, the sinewy limb, To leap, to climb to dive, to swim; The iron frame, inured to bear Each dire inclemency of air. Nor less confirm'd to undergo Fatigue's faint chill, and famine's throe.
V. Then Bertram might the bearing trace Of the bold youth who led the chase; Who paused to list for every sound, Climb every height to look around, Then rushing on with naked sword, Each dingle's bosky depths explored. 'Twas Redmond-by the azure eye; 'Twas Redmond-by the locks that fly
1 MS.-" Invasion, flight, and ambuscade.” * MS.-"Where the slow waves through rushes glide." * See Appendix, Note Z. * See Appendix, Note 2 A. MS.-"Where traces in the dew remain." MS. And oft his soul within him rose,
Prompting to rush upon his foes,
And oft, like tiger toil-beset,
That in each pass finds foe and net,”' &c. 7 In the MS. the stanza concludes thus :
“Suspending yet his purpose stern,
He couch'd him in the brake and fern;
The sparkle of his swarthy eye." 8 See Appendix, Note 2 B.
Thus, circled in his coil, the snake,
Disorder'd from his glowing cheek;
VII. But Bertram, as he backward drew, And heard the loud pursuit renew, And Redmond's hollo on the wind, Oft mutter'd in his savage mind “Redmond O'Neale! were thou and I Alone this day's event to try, With not a second here to see, But the gray cliff and oaken tree, That voice of thine, that shouts so loud, Should ne'er repeat its summons proud ! No! nor e’er try its melting power Again in maiden's summer bower." Eluded, now behind him die, Faint and more faint, each hostile cry; He stands in Scargill wood alone, Nor hears he now a harsher tone Than the hoarse cushat's plaintive cry, Or Greta's sound that murmurs by; And on the dale, so lone and wild, The summer sun in quiet smiled.
VI. Well Risingham young Redmond knew; And much he marvell’d that the crew, Roused to revenge bold Mortham dead, Were by that Mortham's foeman led; For never felt his soul the woe, That wails a generous foeman low, Far less that sense of justice strong, That wreaks a generous foeman's wrong. But small his leisure now to pause; Redmond is first, whate'er the cause :: And twice that Redmond came so near Where Bertram couch'd like hunted deer, The very boughs his steps displace Rustled against the ruffian's face, Who, desperate, twice prepared to start, And plunge his dagger in his heart! But Redmond turn'd a different way, And the bent boughs resumed their sway, And Bertram held it wise, unseen, Deeper to plunge in coppice green.
VIII. He listen'd long with anxious heart, Ear bent to hear, and foot to start, And, while his stretch'd attention glows, Refused his weary frame repose. 'Twas silence all—he laid him down, Where purple heath profusely strown, And throatwort, with its azure bell, And moss and thyme his cushion swell. There, spent with toil, he listless eyed The course of Greta's playful tide; Beneath, her banks now eddying dun, Now brightly gleaming to the sun, As, dancing over rock and stone, In yellow light her currents shone, Matching in hue the favorite gem Of Albin's mountain-diadem.
Then, tired to watch the current's play,
X. Oft, mingled with the direful theme, Came Mortham's form-Was it a dream? Or had he seen, in vision true, That very Mortham whom he slew ? Or had in living flesh appear'd The only man on earth he fear'd ?To try the mystic cause intent, His eyes, that on the cliff were bent, 'Counter'd at once a dazzling glance, Like sunbeam flash'd from sword or lance. At once he started as for fight, But not a foeman was in sight;' He heard the cushat's murmur hoarse, He heard the river's sounding course; The solitary woodlands lay, As slumbering in the summer ray. He gazed, like lion roused, around, Then sunk again upon the ground. 'Twas but, he thought, some fitful beam, Glanced sudden from the sparkling stream; Then plunged him from his gloomy train Of ill-connected thoughts again, Until a voice behind him cried, “Bertram! well met on Greta side."
IX. In sullen mood he lay reclined, Revolving, in his stormy mind, The felon deed, the fruitless guilt, His patron's blood by treason spilt ; A crime, it seem'd, so dire and dread, That it had power to wake the dead. Then, pondering on his life betray'd' By Oswald's art to Redmond's blade, In treacherous purpose to withhold, So seem'd it, Mortham's promised gold, A deep and full revenge he vowd On Redmond, forward, fierce, and proud; Revenge on Wilfrid—on his sire Redoubled vengeance, swift and dire ! If in such mood (as legends say, And well believed that simple day), The Enemy of Man has power To profit by the evil hour, Here stood a wretch, prepared to change His soul's redemption for revenge !" But though his vows, with such a fire Of earnest and intense desire For vengeance dark and fell, were made, As well might reach hell's lowest shade, No deeper clouds the grove embrown'd, No nether thunders shook the ground;The demon knew his vassal's heart, And spared temptation's needless art.
XI. Instant his sword was in his hand, As instant sunk the ready brand; Yet, dubious still, opposed he stood To him that issued from the wood: “Guy Denzil !-is it thou ?” he said; “ Do we two meet in Scargill shade ! Stand back a space !-thy purpose show, Whether thou comest as friend or foe. Report hath said, that Denzil's name From Rokeby's band was razed with shame.”“A shame I owe that hot O'Neale, Who told his knight, in peevish zeal, Of my marauding on the clowns Of Calverley and Bradford downs.” I reck not. In a war to strive, Where, save the leaders, none can thrive, Suits ill my mood; and better game Awaits us both, if thou'rt the same Unscrupulous, bold Risingham,
of the scene in The Robbers, in which something of a similar contrast is exhibited between the beauties of external nature and the agitations of human passion. It is in such pictures that Mr. Scott delights and excels."- Monthly Review. One is surprised that the reviewer did not quote Milton rather than Schiller:
Its old gray cliffs and shaggy wood." : The MS. adds :
" Yet as he gazed, he fail'd to find
According image touch his mind.”
As well might wake hell's lowest shade." "Bertram is now alone : the landscape around is truly grand, partially illuminated by the son ; and we are reminded
Who watch'd with me in midnight dark,
XII. “ Then list.-Not far there lurk a crew Of trusty comrades, stanch and true, Glean'd from both factions—Roundheads, freed From cant of sermon and of creed; And Cavaliers, whose souls, like mine, Spurn at the bonds of discipline. Wiser, we judge, by dale and wold, A warfare of our own to hold, Than breathe our last on battle-down, For cloak or surplice, mace or crown. Our schemes are laid, our purpose set, A chief and leader lack we yet.Thou art a wanderer, it is said; For Mortham's death, thy steps waylaid," Thy head at price—so say our spies, Who range the valley in disguise. Join then with us :—though wild debate And wrangling rend our infant state, Each to an equal loth to bow, Will yield to chief renown'd as thou.”—
XIV. With wonder Bertram heard within The flinty rock a murmur'd din; But when Guy pulld the wilding spray, And brambles, from its base away," He saw, appearing to the air, A little entrance, low and square, Like opening cell of hermit lone, Dark, winding through the living stone. Here enter'd Denzil, Bertram here; And loud and louder on their ear, As from the bowels of the earth, Resounded shouts of boisterous mirth. Of old, the cavern strait and rude, In slaty rock the peasant hew'd; And Brignall's woods, and Scargill's, wave, E'en now, o'er many a sister cave, Where, far within the darksome rift, The wedge and lever ply their thrift. But war had silenced rural trade, And the deserted mine was made The banquet-ball and fortress too, Of Denzil and his desperate crew.There Guilt his anxious revel kept; There, on his sordid pallet, slept Guilt-born Excess, the goblet drain'd Still in his slumbering grasp retain'd; Regret was there, his eye still cast With vain repining on the past; Among the feasters waited near Sorrow, and unrepentant Fear, And Blasphemy, to phrensy driven, With his own crimes reproaching heaven; While Bertram show'd, amid the crew, The Master-Fiend that Milton drew.
XIII. “Even now," thought Bertram, passion-stirr'd, “ I call on hell, and hell has heard !? What lack I, vengeance to command, But of stanch comrades such a band ? This Denzil, vow'd to every evil Might read a lesson to the devil. Well, be it so! each knave and fool Shall serve as my revenge's tool.”— Aloud, “I take thy proffer, Guy, But tell me where thy comrades lie?"“Not far from hence,” Guy Denzil said; Descend, and cross the river's bed, Where rises yonder cliff so gray.”— “Do thou,” said Bertram, “ lead the way.” Then mutter'd, “ It is best make sure; Guy Denzil's faith was never pure.” He follow'd down the steep descent, Then through the Greta's streams they went; And, when they reach'd the farther shore, They stood the lonely cliff before.
XV. Hark! the loud revel wakes again, To greet the leader of the train. Behold the group by the pale lamp, That struggles with the earthy damp. By what strange features Vice hath known, To single out and mark her own! Yet some there are, whose brows retain Less deeply stamp'd her brand and stain. See yon pale stripling !when a boy, A mother's pride, a father's joy! Now, 'gainst the vault's rude walls reclined,
1 MS." Thy head at price, thy steps waylaid."
" ( but half wish'd To see the devil, and he's here already."-OTWAY 3 MS." What lack I, my revenge to quench,
But such a band of comrades stanch ?" * MS." But when Guy Denzil pull'd the spray,
And brambles, from its roots away,
He saw, forth issuing to the air." o See Appendix, Note 2 E.
“We shquld here have concluded our remarks on the char
acters of the drama, had not one of its subordinate personages been touched with a force of imagination, which renders it worthy even of prominent regard and attention. The poet has just presented us with the picture of a gang of banditti, on which he has bestowed some of the most gloomy coloring of his powerful pencil. In the midst of this horrible group, is distinguished the exquisitely natural and interesting portrait which follows: See yon pale stripling!' &c."