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COMPOSED AT NEIDPATH CASTLE, THE PROPERTY OF LORD QUEENSBERRY, 1803 Degenerate Douglas ! O the unworthy lord !
Whom mere despite of heart could so far please
And love of havoc, (for with such disease Fame taxes him,) that he could send forth word To level with the dust a noble horde,
A brotherhood of venerable trees,
Leaving an ancient dome, and towers like these, Beggar'd and outraged !-Many hearts deplored The fate of those old trees; and oft with pain The traveller at this day will stop and gaze 10 On wrongs, which Nature scarcely seems to
heed : For sheltered places, bosoms, nooks, and bays,
And the pure mountains, and the gentle Tweed, And the green silent pastures, yet remain.
ADMONITION TO A TRAVELLER Yes, there is holy pleasure in thine eye !
The lovely cottage in the guardian nook
Hath stirr'd thee deeply; with its own dear brook, Its own small pasture, almost its own sky ! But covet not the abode ; forbear to sigh
As many do, repining while they look ;
Intruders who would tear from Nature's book This precious leaf with harsh impiety : Think what the home must be if it were thine, Even thine, though few thy wants !-Roof,
window, door, The very flowers are sacred to the Poor,
The roses to the porch which they entwine :
Yea, all that now enchants thee, from the day On which it should be touch'd, would melt away!
249 TO THE HIGHLAND GIRL OF INVERSNEYDE
Sweet Highland Girl, a very shower
With earnest feeling I shall pray
Thou wear'st upon thy forehead clear
What hand but would a garland cull
Now thanks to Heaven ! that of its grace
To give new pleasure like the past,
Behold her, single in the field,
Yon solitary Highland Lass !
Stop here, or gently pass !
; O listen! for the vale profound Is overflowing with the sound.
No nightingale did ever chant
More welcome notes to weary bands
Among Arabian sands :
Will no one tell me what she sings ?
Perhaps the plaintive numbers flow
And battles long ago :
Whate'er the theme, the maiden sang
As if her song could have no ending ;
And o'er the sickle bending ;
THE REVERIE OF POOR SUSAN
At the corner of Wood Street, when daylight
appears, Hangs à Thrush that sings loud, it has sung for
three years : Poor Susan has pass'd by the spot, and has heard In the silence of morning the song of the bird.
'Tis a note of enchantment; what ails her? She sees
Green pastures she views in the midst of the dale, Down which she so often has tripp'd with her pail; And a single small cottage, a nest like a dove's, The one only dwelling on earth that she loves.
She looks, and her heart is in heaven : but they faue, The mist and the river, the hill and the shade ; The stream will not flow, and the hill will not rise, And the colours have all pass'd away from her eyes !