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Epitaph on Mrs. Erskine.'

1819.

3.
Merrily swim we, the moon shines bright,
Downward we drift through shadow and light.
Under yon rock the eddies sleep,
Calm and silent, dark and deep.
The Kelpy has risen from the fathomless pool,
He has lighted his candle of death and of dool:
Look, Father, look, and you'll laugh to see
How he gapes and glares with his eyes on thee!

PLAIN, as her native dignity of mind,
Arise the tomb of her we have resign'd;
Unflawd and stainless be the marble scroll,
Emblem of lovely form and candid soul.
But, oh! what symbol may avail, to tell
The kindness, wit, and sense, we loved so well!
What sculpture show the broken ties of life,
Here buried with the parent, friend, and wife!
Or on the tablet stamp each title dear,
By which thine urn, EUPHEMIA, claims the tear!
Yet taught, by thy meek sufferance, to assume
Patience in anguish, hope beyond the tomb,
Resign'd, though sad, this votive verse shall flow,
And brief, alas ! as thy brief span below.

4. Good luck to your fishing, whom watch ye to

night!
A man of mean or a man of might !
Is it layman or priest that must float in your cove,
Or lover who crosses to visit his love?
Hark! heard ye the Kelpy reply as we pass’d, —
“God's blessing on the warder, he lock'd the

bridge fast!
All that come to my cove are sunk,
Priest or layman, lover or monk.”

from the Monastery.

Landed-landed! the black book hath won,
Else had you seen Berwick with morning sun!
Sain ye, and save ye, and blithe mot ye be,
For seldom they land that go swimming with me.

Chap. v.

1820.

(1.)-SONGS OF THE WHITE LADY OF AVENEL.

TO THE SUB-PRIOR.

Good evening, Sir Priest, and so late as you ride, ON TWEED RIVER.

With your mule so fair, and your mantle so wide;

But ride you through valley, or ride you o'er hill, 1.

There is one that has warrant to wait on you still. MERRILY swim we, the moon shines bright,

Back, back, Both current and ripple are dancing in light.

The volume black! We have roused the night raven, I heard him I bave a warrant to carry it back.

croak, As we plash'd along beneath the oak

What, ho! Sub-Prior, and came you but here That flings its broad branches so far and so wide, To conjure a book from a dead woman's bier? Their shadows are dancing in midst of the tide. Sain you, and save you, be wary and wise,

Who wakens my nestlings?" the raven he said, Ride back with the book, or you'll pay for your “My beak shall ere morn in his blood be red !

prize. For a blue swollen corpse is a dainty meal,

Back, back, And I'll have my share with the pike and the eel."

There's death in the track!

In the name of my master, I bid thee bear back. 2. Merrily swim we, the moon shines bright,

"In the name of my Master," said the astonished There's a golden gleam on the distant height: Monk, “that name before which all things created There's a silver shower on the alders dank, tremble, I conjure thee to say what thou art that And the drooping willows that wave on the bank. hauntest me thus ?” I see the Abbey, both turret and tower,

The same voice replied, It is all astir for the vesper hour; The Monks for the chapel are leaving each cell, That which is neither ill nor well, But where's Father Philip should toll the bell ? That which belongs not to heaven nor to hell,

1 Mrs. Euphemia Robinson, wife of William Erskine, Esq. (afterwards Lord Kinedder), died September, 1819, and was

buried at Saline, in the county of Fife, where these lines are inscribed on the tombstone.

A wreath of the mist, a bubble of the stream, 'Twixt a waking thought and a sleeping dream;

A form that men spy

With the half-shut eye In the beams of the setting sun, am I.

Vainly, Sir Prior, wouldst thou bar me my right! Like the star when it shoots, I can dart through

the night; I can dance on the torrent, and ride on the air, And travel the world with the bonny night-mare.

Again, again,

At the crook of the glen, Where bickers the burnie, I'll meet thee again.

Something betwixt heaven and hell-
Something that neither stood nor fell-
Something that through thy wit or will
May work thee good-may work thee ill.
Neither substance quite, nor shadow,
Haunting lonely moor and meadow,
Dancing by the haunted spring,
Riding on the whirlwind's wing;
Aping in fantastic fashion
Every change of human passion,
While o'er our frozen minds they pass,
Like shadows from the mirror'd glass.
Wayward, fickle, is our mood,
Hovering betwixt bad and good,
Happier than brief-dated man,
Living ten times o'er his span;
Far less happy, for we have
Help nor hope beyond the grave!
Man awakes to joy or sorrow;
Ours the sleep that knows no morrow.
This is all that I can show
This is all that thou may'st know.

Men of good are bold as sackless,"
Men of rude are wild and reckless.

Lie thou still

In the nook of the hill, For those be before thee that wish thee ill.

Chap. ix.

HALBERTS INCANTATION.

THRICE to the holly brake

Thrice to the well :I bid thee awake,

White Maid of Avenel!

Ay! and I taught thee the word and the spell,
To waken me here by the Fairies' Well.
But thou hast loved the heron and hawk,
More than to seek my haunted walk;
And thou hast loved the lance and the sword,
More than good text and holy word;
And thou hast loved the deer to track,
More than the lines and the letters black;
And thou art a ranger of moss and wood,
And scornest the nurture of gentle blood.

Noon gleams on the Lake

Noon glows on the FellWake thee, O wake,

White Maid of Avenel.

TO HALBERT.

Thy craven fear my truth accused,
Thine idlehood my trust abused;
He that draws to harbor late,
Must sleep without, or burst the gate.
There is a star for thee which burn'd,
Its influence wánes, its course is turn'd;
Valor and constancy alone
Can bring thee back the chance that's flown.

Youth of the dark eye, wherefore didst thou call

me? Wherefore art thou here, if terrors can appal thee? He that seeks to deal with us must know nor fear,

nor failing; To coward and churl our speech is dark, our gifts

are unavailing. The breeze that brought me hither now must

sweep Egyptian ground, The fleecy cloud on which I ride for Araby is

bound; The fleecy cloud is drifting by, the breeze sighs for

my stay, For I must sail a thousand miles before the close

of day.

Within that awful volume lies
The mystery of mysteries !
Happiest they of human race,
To whom God has granted grace
To read, to fear, to hope, to pray,
To lift the latch, and force the way;
And better had they ne'er been born,
Who read to doubt, or read to scorn.

What I am I must not show-
What I am thou couldst not know-

Many a fathom dark and deep
I have laid the book to sleep;
Ethereal fires around it glowing-
Ethereal music ever flowing-

The sacred pledge of Heav'n

* Sackless-Innocent.

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And gazers mark their changeful gleams, But feel no influence from their beams.

By ties mysterious link'd, our fated race
Holds strange connection with the sons of men.
The star that rose upon the House of Avenel,
When Norman Ulric first assumed the name,
That star, when culminating in its orbit,
Shot from its sphere a drop of diamond dew,
And this bright font received it—and a Spirit
Rose from the fountain, and her date of life
Hath coexistence with the House of Avenel,
And with the star that rules it.

Maiden, attend ! Beneath my foot lies hid
The Word, the Law, the Path which thou dost

strive To find, and canst not find.—Could Spirits shed

Tears for their lot, it were my lot to weep, Showing the road which I shall never tread,

Though my foot points it.-Sleep, eternal sleep Dark, long, and cold forgetfulness my lot !

But do not thou at human ills repine ; Secure there lies full guerdon in this spot

For all the woes that wait frail Adam's lineStoop then and make it yours,-I may not make it mine!

Chap. XXX

Look on my girdle—on this thread of gold-
'Tis fine as web of lightest gossamer,
And, but there is a spell on't, would not bind,
Light as they are, the folds of my thin robe.
But when 'twas donn'd, it was a massive chain,
Such as might bind the champion of the Jews,
Even when his locks were longest -- it hath

dwindled,
Hath ʼminish'd in its substance and its strength,
As sunk the greatness of the House of Avenel.
When this frail thread gives way, I to the ele-

ments Resign the principles of life they lent me. Ask me no more of this the stars forbid it.

THE WHITE LADY TO EDWARD

GLENDINNING. Thou who seek'st my fountain lone, With thoughts and hopes thou dar'st not own; Whose heart within leap'd wildly glad, When most his brow seem'd dark and sad; Hie thee back, thou find'st not here Corpse or coffin, grave or bier ; The Dead Alive is gone and fledGo thou, and join the Living Dead !

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