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III. Soon by the chimney's merry blaze, Through the rude hostel might you gaze; Might see, where, in dark nook aloof, The rafters of the sooty roof Bore wealth of winter cheer; Of sea-fowl dried, and solands store, And gammons of the tuskyboar, And savoury haunch of deer. The chimney arch projected wide; Above, around it, and beside, Were tools for housewives' hand: Nor wanted, in that martial day, The implements of Scottish fray, The buckler, lance, and brand. Beneath its shade, the place of state, On oaken settle Marmion sate, And viewed around the blazing hearth. His followers mix in noisy mirth, Whom with brown ale, in jolly tide, From ancient vessels ranged aside, Full actively their host supplied.
Theirs was the glee of martial breast,
And laughter theirs at little jest;
And oft Lord Marmion deigned to aid,
And mingle in the mirth they made:
For though, with men of high degree,
The proudest of the proud was he,
Yet, trained in camps, he knew the art
To win the soldier's hardy heart. *-
They love a captain to obey,
Boisterous as March, yet fresh as May;
With open hand, and brow as free,
Lover of wine, and minstrelsy;
Ever the first to scale a tower,
As venturous in a lady's bower;
Such buxom chief shall lead his host
From India's fires to Zembla's frost,
Resting upon his pilgrim staff,
Right opposite the Palmer stood;
His thin dark visage seen but half,
Half hidden by his hood.
Still fixed on Marmion was his look,
Which he, who ill such gaze could brook,
Strove by a frown to quell;
But not for that, though more than once
Full met their stern encountering glance,
The Palmer's visage fell.
By fits less frequent from the crowd
Was heard the burst of laughter loud;
For still, as squire and archer stared
On that dark face and matted beard,
Their glee and game declined.
All gazed at length in silence drear,
Unbroke, save when, in comrade's ear
Some yeoman, wondering in his fear,
Thus whispered forth his mind:—
“Saint Mary! saw'st thou ere such sight?
How pale his cheek, his eye how bright,
Whene'er the fire-brand's fickle light
Glances beneath his cowl!
Full on our Lord he sets his eye;
For his best palfrey, would not I
Endure that sullen scowl.”-
But Marmion, as to chase the awe
Which had thus quelled their hearts, who saw
The ever-varying fire-light show
That figure stern and face of wo,
Now called upon a squire:“Fitz-Eustace, know'st thou not some lay, To speed the lingering night away?
We slumber by the fire.”
“So please you," thus the youth rejoined,
“Our choicestminstrel's left behind.
Ill may we hope to please your ear,
Accustomed Constant's strains to hear.
The harp full deftly can he strike,
And wake the lover's lute alike;
To dear Saint Valentine, no thrush
Sings livelier from a spring-tide bush;
No nightingale her love-lorn tune
More sweetly warbles to the moon.
Wo to the cause, whate'er it be,
Detains from us his melody,
Lavished on rocks, and billows stern,
Or duller monks of Lindisfarn.
Now must I venture as I may,
To sing his favourite roundelay.”
IX. A deep and mellow voice he had, The air he chose was wild and sad; Such have I heard, in Scottish land, Rise from the busy harvest band, When falls before the mountaineer, On lowland plains, the ripened ear. Now one shrill voice the notes prolong, Now a wild chorus swells the song: Oft have I listened and stood still, As it came softened up the hill, And deemed it the lament of men Who languished for their native glen; And thought, how sad would be such sound On Susquehanna's swampy ground, Kentucky's wood-encumbered brake, Or wild Ontario's boundless lake, Where heart-sick exiles, in the strain, Recalled fair Scotland's hills again!
X. SONG. Where shall the lover rest, Whom the fates sever From his true maiden's breast, Parted for ever? Where, through groves deep and high, Sounds the far billow, Where early violets die, Under the willow. CHORUS. Elew loro, &c. Soft shall be his pillow.
There, through the summer day,
Cool streams are laving;
There, while the tempests sway,
Scarce are boughs waving;
There, thy rest shalt thou take,
Parted for ever,
Never again to wake,
Never, O never.
Eleu loro, &c. Never, 0 never.
Where shall the traitor rest,
He, the deceiver,
Who could win maiden's breast,-
Ruin, and leave her?