Part 1 out of 5
Produced by Susan Skinner, Tom Allen, Juliet Sutherland,
Charles Franks, and the DP Team
MEMORIES OF CANADA AND SCOTLAND
_SPEECHES AND VERSES_
BY THE RIGHT HON. THE MARQUIS OF LORNE
K.T., G.C.M.G., &C.
DEDICATED WITH RESPECT AND AFFECTION TO
THE MEMBERS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY OF CANADA
_VERSES ON CANADIAN SUBJECTS._
PROLOGUE--GOVERNMENT HOUSE, MARCH 1879
CANADIAN NATIONAL HYMN
CANADIAN RIVER RHYMES
THE CANADIAN ROBIN
MILICETE LEGEND OF THE RIVER ST. JOHN
THE GUIDE OF THE MOHAWKS
THE STRONG HUNTER
THE ORIGIN OF THE INDIAN CORN
THE ISLES OF HURON
THE MYSTIC ISLE OF THE "LAND OF THE NORTH WIND"
THE SONG OF THE SIX SISTERS
THE PRAIRIE ROSES
THE "QU'APPELLE" VALLEY
SAN GABRIEL, ON THE PACIFIC COAST
ON CHIEF MOUNTAIN
ON THE NEW PROVINCE "ALBERTA"
_VERSES CHIEFLY FROM HIGHLAND STORIES._
THE HARD STRAIT OF THE FEINNE
TOBERMORY BAY, 1588
LOCH UISK, ISLE OF MULL
THE LADY'S ROCK
THE POOL OF THE IRON SHIRT
AN ISLESMAN'S FAREWELL
PREFACE TO DIARMID'S STORY
GRINIE'S FLIGHT WITH DIARMID
THE DEATH OF THE BOAR
KING ARTHUR AND THE CAPTIVE MAIDEN
SEANN ORAN GAILIC
THE ARMADA GUN
THE IRISH EMIGRANT, 1880
THE IRISH EMIGRANT, 1883
SONNET ON THE DEATH OF LORD F. DOUGLAS
ON A FOREIGN WAR-SHIP'S SALUTE TO THE QUEEN'S STANDARD
_SPEECHES AND ADDRESSES._
FAREWELL ADDRESS AT INVERARAY
EMBARKING AT LIVERPOOL
REPLY TO THE LIVERPOOL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
TO THE MUNICIPALITY OF LONDONDERRY
AT MONTREAL--TO THE ST. ANDREWS SOCIETY
AT MONTREAL--REPLY TO THE CITIZENS' ADDRESS
AT OTTAWA--REPLY TO THE CITIZENS' ADDRESS
AT OTTAWA--DISTRIBUTION OF SCHOOL PRIZES
AT KINGSTON--ON RECEIVING THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF LAWS OF QUEEN'S COLLEGE
AT KINGSTON--TO THE UNIVERSITY OF QUEEN'S COLLEGE
AT KINGSTON--TO THE CADETS OF THE ROYAL MILITARY COLLEGE
AT MONTREAL--REVIEW ON THE QUEEN'S BIRTHDAY, 1879
AT MONTREAL--OPENING OF AN ART INSTITUTE
AT QUEBEC--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE CITY CORPORATION
AT QUEBEC--LAVAL UNIVERSITY
AT TORONTO--TORONTO CLUB DINNER
AT ST. JOHN, N.B.
AT ST. JOHN, N.B.--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE CITY CORPORATION
AT FREDERICTON--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE CITY CORPORATION
IN KINGS' COUNTY, N.B.--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE MUNICIPALITY
AT TORONTO--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE CITY CORPORATION
AT BERLIN, ONTARIO--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE GERMAN RESIDENTS
AT OTTAWA--EXHIBITION OF 1880
AT OTTAWA--EXHIBITION OF THE ROYAL CANADIAN ACADEMY OF ART
AT QUEBEC--FESTIVAL OF ST. JEAN BAPTISTE
AT HAMILTON--OPENING OF PROVINCIAL FAIR
AT MONTREAL--OPENING OF PROVINCIAL FAIR
AT MONTREAL--LAYING THE FOUNDATION STONE OF THE REDPATH MUSEUM OF THE
AT CHAMBLY--UNVEILING THE STATUE OF COLONEL DE SALABERRY
AT ST. THOMAS--GATHERING OF HIGHLANDERS
AT WINNIPEG--IMPRESSIONS OF A TOUR IN THE NORTHWEST
AT WINNIPEG--SOCIETY OF ST. JEAN BAPTISTE OF MANITOBA
AT WINNIPEG--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE ARCHBISHOP OF ST. BONIFACE--MANITOBA
AT WINNIPEG--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE BOARD OF MANAGEMENT OF MANITOBA
AT FORT SHAW, MONTANA--FAREWELL TO THE NORTHWEST MOUNTED POLICE
AT OTTAWA--INCEPTION OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY OF CANADA
AT SAN FRANCISCO, CAL--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE BRITISH RESIDENTS
AT VICTORIA, B.C.--SPEECH AT A PUBLIC DINNER
AT OTTAWA--MEETING OF THE NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION
AT OTTAWA--SECOND MEETING OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY OF CANADA
AT TORONTO--REPLY TO ADDRESSES OF THE ROYAL ACADEMY AND OF THE ONTARIO
SOCIETY OF ARTISTS
AT OTTAWA--FAREWELL ADDRESS OF THE PARLIAMENT OF CANADA
EXTRACT FROM THE SPEECH FROM THE THRONE
AT TORONTO--EXHIBITION OF ARTS AND MANUFACTURES
AT TORONTO--REPLY TO ADDRESS AT THE QUEEN'S PARK
AT OTTAWA--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE CITY CORPORATION
AT MONTREAL--REPLY TO ADDRESS OF THE CITY CORPORATION
AT QUEBEC--REPLY, OCT. 20TH 1883, TO ADDRESS OF THE CITY CORPORATION
VERSES ON CANADIAN SUBJECTS.
"Are hearts here strong enough to found
A glorious people's sway?"
Ask of our rivers as they bound
From hill to plain, or ocean-sound,
If they are strong to-day?
If weakness in their floods be found,
Then may ye answer "Nay!"
"Is union yours? may foeman's might
Your love ne'er break or chain?"
Go see if o'er our land the flight
Of Spring be stayed by blast or blight;
If Fall bring never grain;
If Summer suns deny their light,
Then may our hope be vain!
"Yet far too cramped the narrow space
Your country's rule can own?"
Ah! travel all its bounds and trace
Each Alp unto its fertile base,
Our realm of forests lone,
Our world of prairie, like the face
Of ocean, hardly known!
"Yet for the arts to find a shrine,
Too rough, I ween, and rude?"
Yea, if you find no flower divine
With prairie grass or hardy pine.
No lilies with the wood,
Or on the water-meadows' line
No purple Iris' flood!
"You deem a nation here shall stand,
United, great, and free?"
Yes, see how Liberty's own hand
With ours the continent hath spanned,
Strong-arched, from sea to sea:
Our Canada's her chosen land,
Her roof and crown to be!
O fortress city, bathed by streams
Majestic as thy memories great,
Where mountains, floods, and forests mate
The grandeur of the glorious dreams,
Born of the hero hearts who died
In founding here an Empire's pride;
Prosperity attend thy fate,
And happiness in thee abide,
Pair Canada's strong tower and gate!
May Envy, that against thy might
Dashed hostile hosts to surge and break,
Bring Commerce, emulous to make
Thy people share her fruitful fight,
In filling argosies with store
Of grain and timber, and each ore,
And all a continent can shake
Into thy lap, till more and more
Thy praise in distant worlds awake.
Who hath not known delight whose feet
Have paced thy streets or terrace way;
From rampart sod or bastion grey
Hath marked thy sea-like river greet.
The bright and peopled banks which shine
In front of the far mountain's line;
Thy glittering roofs below, the play
Of currents where the ships entwine
Their spars, or laden pass away?
As we who joyously once rode
Past guarded gates to trumpet sound,
Along the devious ways that wound
O'er drawbridges, through moats, and showed
The vast St. Lawrence flowing, belt
The Orleans Isle, and sea-ward melt;
Then by old walls with cannon crowned,
Down stair-like streets, to where we felt
The salt winds blown o'er meadow ground.
Where flows the Charles past wharf and dock.
And Learning from Laval looks down,
And quiet convents grace the town.
There swift to meet the battle shock
Montcalm rushed on; and eddying back,
Red slaughter marked the bridge's track:
See now the shores with lumber brown,
And girt with happy lands which lack
No loveliness of Summer's crown.
Quaint hamlet-alleys, border-filled
With purple lilacs, poplars tall,
Where flits the yellow bird, and fall
The deep eave shadows. There when tilled
The peasant's field or garden bed,
He rests content if o'er his head
From silver spires the church-bells call
To gorgeous shrines, and prayers that gild
The simple hopes and lives of all.
Winter is mocked by garbs of green,
Worn by the copses flaked with snow,--
White spikes and balls of bloom, that blow
In hedgerows deep; and cattle seen
In meadows spangled thick with gold,
And globes where lovers' fates are told
Around the red-doored houses low;
While rising o'er them, fold on fold,
The distant hills in azure glow.
Oft in the woods we long delayed,
When hours were minutes all too brief,
For Nature knew no sound of grief;
But overhead the breezes played,
And in the dank grass at our knee,
Shone pearls of our green forest sea,
The star-white flowers of triple leaf
Which love around the brooks to be,
Within the birch and maple shade.
At times we passed some fairy mere
Embosomed in the leafy screen,
And streaked with tints of heaven's sheen,
Where'er the water's surface clear
Bore not the hues of verdant light
From myriad boughs on mountain height,
Or near the shadowed banks were seen
The sparkles that in circlets bright
Told where the fishes' feast had been.
And when afar the forests flushed
In falling swathes of fire, there soared
Dark clouds where muttering thunder roared,
And mounting vapours lurid rushed,
While a metallic lustre flew
Upon the vivid verdure's hue,
Before the blasts and rain forth poured,
And slow o'er mighty landscapes drew
The grandest pageant of the Lord:
The threatening march of flashing cloud,
With tumults of embattled air,
Blest conflicts for the good they bear!
A century has God allowed
None other, since the days He gave
Unequal fortune to the brave.
Comrades in death! you live to share
An equal honour, for your grave
Bade Enmity take Love as heir!
We watched, when gone day's quivering haze,
The loops of plunging foam that beat
The rocks at Montmorenci's feet
Stab the deep gloom with moonlit rays;
Or from the fortress saw the streams
Sweep swiftly o'er the pillared beams;
White shone the roofs, and anchored fleet,
And grassy slopes where nod in dreams
Pale hosts of sleeping Marguerite.
Or when the dazzling Frost King mailed
Would clasp the wilful waterfall,
Fast leaping to her snowy hall
She fled; and where her rainbows hailed
Her freedom, painting all her home,
We climbed her spray-built palace dome,
Shot down the radiant glassy wall
Until we reached the snowdrift foam,
As shoots to waves some meteor ball.
Then homeward, hearing song or tale,
With chime of harness bells we sped
Above the frozen river bed.
The city, through a misty veil,
Gleamed from her cape, where sunset fire
Touched louvre and cathedral spire,
Bathed ice and snow a rosy red,
So beautiful that men's desire
For May-time's rival wonders fled:
What glories hath this gracious land,
Fit home for many a hardy race;
Where liberty has broadest base,
And labour honours every hand!
Throughout her triply thousand miles
The sun upon each season smiles,
And every man has scope and space,
And kindliness, from strand to strand,
Alone is born to right of place!
Such were our memories. May they yet
Be shared by others, sent to be
Signs of the union of the free
And kindred peoples God hath set
O'er famous isles, and fertile zones
Of continents! Or if new thrones
And mighty States arise, may He
Whose potent hand yon river owns
Smooth their great future's shrouded Sea!
GOVERNMENT HOUSE, _March_ 1879.
A moment's pause before we play our parts,
To speak the thought that reigns within your hearts.--
Now from the Future's hours, and unknown days,
Affection turns, and with the Past delays;
For countless voices in our mighty land
Speak the fond praises of a vanished hand;
And shall, to mightier ages yet, proclaim
The happy memories linked with Dufferin's name.
Missed here is he, to whom each class and creed,
Among our people lately bade "God speed;"
Missed, when each Winter sees the skater wheel
In ringing circle on the flashing steel;
Missed in the Spring, the Summer and the Fall,
In many a hut, as in the Council Hall;
Where'er his wanderings on Duty's hest
Evoked his glowing speech, his genial jest.
We mourn his absence, though we joy that now
Old England's honours cluster round his brow,
And that he left us but to serve again
Our Queen and Empire on the Neva's plain!
Amidst the honoured roll of those whose fate
It was to crown our fair Canadian State,
And bind in one bright diadem alone,
Each glorious Province, each resplendent stone,
His name shall last, and his example give
To all her sons a lesson how to live:
How every task, if met with heart as bold,
Proves the hard rock is seamed with precious gold,
And Labour, when with Mirth and Love allied,
Finds friends far stronger than in Force and Pride,
And Sympathy and Kindness can be made
The potent weapons by which men are swayed.
He proved a nation's trust can well be won
By loyal work and constant duty done;
The wit that winged the wisdom of his word
Set forth our glories, till all Europe heard
How wide the room our Western World can spare
For all who nobly toil and bravely dare.
And while the statesman we revere, we know
In him the friend is gone, to whom we owe
So much of gaiety, so much which made
Life's duller round to seem in joy repaid.
These little festivals by him made bright,
With grateful thoughts of him renewed to-night,
Remind no less of her who deigned to grace
This mimic world, and fill therein her place
With the sweet dignity and gracious mien
The race of Hamilton has often seen;
But never shown upon the wider stage
Where the great "cast" is writ on History's page,
More purely, nobly, than by her, whose voice
Here moved to tears, or made the heart rejoice,
And who in act and word, at home, or far,
Shone with calm beauty like the Northern Star!
Green as the Shamrock of their native Isle
Their memory lives, and babes unborn shall smile
And share in happiness the pride that blends
Our country's name with her beloved friends!
_A NATIONAL HYMN._
GOVERNMENT HOUSE, _March_ 1880.
From our Dominion never
Take Thy protecting hand,
United, Lord, for ever
Keep Thou our fathers' land!
From where Atlantic terrors
Our hardy seamen train,
To where the salt sea mirrors
The vast Pacific chain.
Aye one with her whose thunder
Keeps world-watch with the hours,
Guard Freedom's home and wonder,
"This Canada of ours."
Fair days of fortune send her,
Be Thou her Shield and Sun!
Our land, our flag's Defender,
Unite our hearts as one!
One flag, one land, upon her
May every blessing rest I
For loyal faith and honour
Her children's deeds attest
Aye one with her, &c.
No stranger's foot, insulting,
Shall tread our country's soil;
While stand her sons exulting
For her to live and toil.
She hath the victor's guerdon,
Her's are the conquering hours,
No foeman's yoke shall burden
"This Canada of ours."
Aye one with her, &c.
Our sires, when times were sorest,
Asked none but aid Divine,
And cleared the tangled forest,
And wrought the buried mine.
They tracked the floods and fountains,
And won, with master-hand,
Far more than gold in mountains,
The glorious Prairie-land.
Aye one with her, &c,
O Giver of earth's treasure,
Make Thou our nation strong;
Pour forth Thine hot displeasure
On all who work our wrong!
To our remotest border
Let plenty still increase,
Let Liberty and Order,
Bid ancient feuds to cease.
Aye one with her, &c.
May Canada's fair daughters
Keep house for hearts as bold
As theirs who o'er the waters
Came hither first of old.
The pioneers of nations!
They showed the world the way;
Tis ours to keep their stations,
And lead the van to-day.
Aye one with her, &c.
Inheritors of glory,
O countrymen! we swear
To guard the flag whose story
Shall onward victory bear.
Where'er through earth's far regions
Its triple crosses fly,
For God, for home, our legions
Shall win, or fighting die!
Aye one with her, &c.
1. We have poled our staunch canoe
Many a boiling torrent through;
Paddling where the eddies drew,
Athwart the roaring flood we flew.
Dip your paddles! make them leap,
Where the clear cold waters sweep.
Dip your paddles! steady keep,
Where breaks the rapid down the steep.
2. Where the wind, like censer, flings
Smoke-spray wider as it swings,
Hark! the aisle of rainbow rings
To falls that hymn the King of kings.
3. Lifting there our vessel tight,
Climbed we bank and rocky height,
Bore her through thick woods, where light
Fell dappling those green haunts of Night.
4. O'er the rush of billows hurled,
Where they tossed and leaped and curled,
Past each wave-worn boulder whirled,
How fast we sailed, no sail unfurled!
5. Laughs from parted lips and teeth
Hailed the quiet reach beneath,
Damascened in ferny sheath,
And girt with pine and maple wreath.
6. Oh, the lovely river there
Made all Nature yet more fair;
Wooded hills and azure air
Kissed, quivering, in the stream they share.
7. Plunged the salmon, waging feud
'Gainst the jewelled insect-brood;
From aerial solitude
An eagle's shadow crossed the wood.
8. Flapped the heron, and the grey
Halcyon talked from cedar's spray,
Drummed the partridge far away;--
Ah! could we choose to live as they!
_LEGEND OF THE CANADIAN ROBIN_
Is it Man alone who merits
Immortality or death?
Each created thing inherits
Equal air and common breath.
Souls pass onward: some are ranging
Happy hunting-grounds, and some
Are as joyous, though in changing
Form be altered, language dumb.
Beauteous all, if fur or feather,
Strength or gift of song be theirs;
He who planted all together
Equally their fate prepares.
Like to Time, that dies not, living
Through the change the seasons bring,
So men, dying, are but giving
Life to some fleet foot or wing.
Bird and beast the Savage cherished,
But the Robins loved he best;
O'er the grave where he has perished
They shall thrive and build their nest.
Hunted by the white invader,
Vanish ancient races all;
Yet no ruthless foe or trader
Silences the songster's call.
For the white man too rejoices,
Welcoming Spring's herald bird,
When the ice breaks, and the voices
From the rushing streams are heard.
Where the Indian's head-dress fluttered,
Pale the settler would recoil,
And his deepest curse was uttered
On the Red Son of the soil.
Later knew he not, when often
Gladness with the Robin came,
How a spirit-change could soften
Hate to dear affection's flame:
Knew not, as he heard, delighted,
Mellow notes in woodlands die,
How his heart had leaped, affrighted
At that voice in battle-cry.
For a youthful Savage, keeping
Long his cruel fast, had prayed,
All his soul in yearning steeping,
Not for glory, chase, or maid;
But to sing in joy, and wander,
Following the summer hours,
Drinking where the streams meander,
Feasting with the leaves and flowers.
Once his people saw him painting
Red his sides and red his breast,
Said: "His soul for fight is fainting,
War-paint suits the hero best;"
Went, when passed the night, loud calling,
Found him not, but where he lay
Saw a Robin, whose enthralling
Carol seemed to them to say;
"I have left you! I am going
Far from fast and winter pain;
When the laughing water's flowing
Hither I will come again!"
Thus his ebon locks still wearing,
With the war-paint on his breast,
Still he comes, our summer sharing,
And the lands he once possessed.
Finding in the white man's regions
Foemen none, but friends whose heart
Loves the Robins' happy legions,
Mourns when, silent, they depart.
_WERE THESE THE FIRST DISCOVERERS OF AMERICA?_
MILICETE LEGEND OF THE OUANGONDE, OR RIVER ST. JOHN.
Though the ebbing ocean listens
To Ugonde's throbbing roar,
Calm the conquering flood-tide glistens
Where the river raved before. 
 The Bay of Fundy tide rises to such a height that it flows up
the St. John River channel to some distance, silencing the roar
of the Calls, which pour over a great ledge of rock left by the
ebbing sea. Taken very literally from a tale in the "Amaranth
So the sea-brought strangers, stronger
Than their Indian foes of old,
Conquered, till were heard no longer
War-songs through the forests rolled.
Yet the land's wild stream, begotten
Where its Red Sons fought and died,
With traditions unforgotten
Strives to stem Oblivion's tide;
Tells the mighty, who, like ocean,
Whelm the native stream, how they
First in far dim days' commotion,
Wrestling, fought for empire's sway.
Hear the sad cascade, ere ever
Sinks in rising tides its moan,
True may be the tale, though never
By the victor ocean known.
Now the chant rings softly, finding
Freedom as the sea retires;
Loudly now, through spray-tears blinding
Throb and thunder silver lyres;
Silenced when the strong sea-water
To its great' heart, limitless,
Rising, takes the valley's daughter,
Soothes the song of her distress.
For a while the salt brine leaves me
O'er my terraced rocks to fall,
And my broad swift-gliding waters
Olden memories recall.
Ere the tallest pines were seedlings
With my life-stream these were blent;
As a father's words, like arrows
Straight to children's hearts are sent,
So my currents speeding downwards,
Ever passing, sing the same
Story of the days remembered,
When the stranger people came.
Men of mighty limbs and voices,
Bearing shining shields and knives,
Painted gleamed their hair like evening,
When the sun in ocean dives.
Blue their eyes and tall their stature,
Huge as Indian shadows seen
When the sun through mists of morning
Casts them o'er a clear lake's sheen.
From before the great Pale-faces
Fled the tribes to woods and caves,
Watching thence their fearful councils,
Where they talked beside the waves.
For they loved the shores, and fashioned
Houses from its stones, and there
Fished and rested, danced at night-time
By their fire and torches' glare.
Sang loud songs before the pine-logs
As they crackled in the flame,
Raised and drank from bone-cups, shouting
Fiercely some strange spirit's name.
Turning to the morning's pathway,
Cried they thus to gods, and none
Dared to fight the bearded giants,
Children of the fire and sun.
From their bodies fell our flint-darts,
Yet their arrows flew, like rays
Flashing from the rocks where polished
By the ice in winter days.
Then the Indians prayed the spirits
Haunting river, bank, and hill,
To let hatred, like marsh vapour,
Rise among their foes and kill.
And they seemed to heed, for anger
Often maddened all the band,
Fighting for some stones that glittered
Yellow on Ugonde's sand.
Seeing axe and spear-head crimson,
Hope illumined doubt and dread,
And our land's despairing children
Called upon the mighty dead.
All the Northern night-air shaking,
Rose the ancients' bright array,
Burning lines of battle breaking
Darkness into lurid day.
But the stranger hearts were hardened,
Fearless slept they; then at last
Our Great Spirit heard, and answered
From his home in heaven vast.
For his waving locks were tempests,
And the thunder-cloud his frown;
Where he trod the earthquake followed,
And the forests bowed them down.
As his whirlwind struck the mountains,
Rent and lifted, swayed the ground;
Winged knives of crooked lightning
Gleamed from skies and gulfs profound.
Floods, from wonted channels driven,
Roared at falling hillside's shock;
What was land became the torrent,
What was lake became the rock.
Now the river and the ocean,
Whispering, say: "Our floods alone
See white skeletons slow-moving
Near the olden walls of stone."
Moving slow in stream and sea-tide,
There the stranger warriors sleep,
And their shades still cry in anguish
Where the foaming waters leap.
_THE GUIDE OF THE MOHAWKS_.
For strife against the ocean tribe
The Mohawks' war array
Comes floating down, where broad St. John
Reflects the dawning day.
A camp is seen, and victims fall,
And none are left to flee;
A maid alone is spared, compelled
A traitress guide to be.
The swift canoes together keep,
And o'er their gliding prows
The silent girl points down the stream,
Nor halt nor rest allows.
"Speak! are we near your fires? How dark
Night o'er these waters lies!"
Still pointing down the rushing stream,
The maiden naught replies.
The banks fly past, the water seethes;
The Mohawks shout, "To shore!
Where is the girl?" Her cry ascends
From out the river's roar.
The foaming rapids rise and flash
A moment o'er her head,
And smiling as she sinks, she knows
Her foemen's course is sped;
A moment hears she shriek on shriek
From hearts that death appals,
As, seized by whirling gulfs, the crews
Are drawn into the falls!
_THE STRONG HUNTER._
There's a warrior hunting o'er prairie and hill,
Who in sunshine or starlight is eager to kill,
Who ne'er sleeps by his fire on the wild river's shore,
Where the green cedars shake to the white rapids' roar.
Ever tireless and noiseless, he knows not repose,
Be the land filled with summer, or lifeless with snows;
But his strength gives him few he can count as his friends,
Man and beast fly before him wherever he wends,
For he chases alike every form that has breath,
And his darts must strike all,--for that hunter is Death!!
Lo! a skeleton armed, and his scalp-lock yet streams;
From this vision of fear of the Iroquois' dreams!
OR, THE ORIGIN OF THE INDIAN-CORN.
Cherry bloom and green buds bursting
Fleck the azure skies;
In the spring wood, hungering, thirsting,
Faint an Indian lies.
To behold his guardian spirit
Fasts the dusky youth;
Prays that thus he may inherit
Warrior strength and truth.
Weak he grows, the war-path gory
Seems a far delight;
Now he scans the flowers, whose glory
Is not won by fight.
"Hunger kills me; see my arrow
Bloodless lies: I ask,
If life's doom be grave-pit narrow,
Deathless make its task.
"For man's welfare guide my being,
So I shall not die
Like the flow'rets, fading, fleeing,
When the snow is nigh.
"Medicine from the plants we borrow,
Salves from many a leaf;
May they not kill hunger's sorrow,
Give with food relief?"
Suddenly a spirit shining
From the sky came down,
Green his mantle, floating, twining,
Gold his feather crown.
"I have heard thy thought unspoken;
Famous thou shall be;
Though no scalp shall be the token,
Men shall speak of thee.
"Bravely borne, men's heaviest burden
Ever lighter lies;
Wrestling with me, win the guerdon;
Gain thy wish, arise!"
Now he rises, and, prevailing,
Hears the angel say:
"Strong in weakness, never failing,
Strive yet one more day.
"Now again I come, and find thee
Yet with courage high,
So that, though my arms can bind thee,
Victor thou, not I.
"Hark! to-morrow, conquering, slay me,
Blest shall be thy toil:
After wrestling, strip me, lay me
Sleeping in the soil.
"Visit oft the place; above me
Root out weeds and grass;
Fast no more; obeying, love me;
Watch what comes to pass."
Waiting through the long day dreary,
Still he hungers on;
Once more wrestling, weak and weary,
Still the fight is won.
Stripped of robes and golden feather,
Buried lies the guest:
Summer's wonder-working weather
Warms his place of rest.
Ever his commands fulfilling,
Mourns his victor friend,
Fearing, with a heart unwilling,
To have known the end.
No! upon the dark mould fallow
Shine bright blades of green;
Rising, spreading, plumes of yellow
O'er their sheaves are seen.
Higher than a mortal's stature
Soars the corn in pride;
Seeing it, he knows that Nature
There stands deified.
"'Tis my friend," he cries, "the guerdon
Fast and prayer have won;
Want is past, and hunger's burden
Soon shall torture none."
_THE ISLES OF HURON_
Bright are the countless isles which crest
With waving woods wide Huron's breast,--
Her countless isles, that love too well
The crystal waters whence they rise,
Far from her azure depths to swell,
Or wanton with the wooing skies;
Nor, jealous, soar to keep the Day
From laughing in each rippling bay,
But floating on the flood they love,
Soft whispering, kiss her breast, and seek
No passions of the air above,
No fires that burn the thunder-peak.
Algoma o'er Ontario throws
Fair forest heights and mountain snows;
Strong Erie shakes the orchard plain
At great Niagara's defiles,
And river-gods o'er Lawrence reign,
But Love is king in Huron's isles.
_THE MYSTIC ISLE OF THE "LAND OF THE NORTH WIND."_
A land untamed, whose myriad isles
Are set in branching lakes that vein
Illimitable silent woods,
Voiceful in Fall, when their defiles,
Rich with the birch's golden rain,
See winging past the wildfowl broods.
Blue channels seem its dented rocks,
So steeply smoothed, but crusted o'er
With rounded mosses, green and grey,
That oft a Southern coral mocks
Upon this Northern fir-clad shore,
'Neath tufted copse on cape and bay.
Here sunshine from serener skies
Than Europe's ocean-islands know
Ripens the berry for the bear,
And pierces where the beaver plies
His water-forestry, or slow
The moose seeks out a breezy lair.
The blaze scarce spangles bush or ferns,
But lights the white pine's velvet fringe
And its dark Norway sister's boughs;
At eve between their shadows burns
The lake, where shafts of crimson tinge
The savage war-flotilla's prows.
Far circling round, these seem to shun
An isle more fair than all beside,
As if some lurking foe were there,
Although upon its heights the sun
Shines glorious, and its forest pride
Is fanned by summer's joyous air.
For 'mid these isles is one of fear,
And none may ever breathe its name.
There the Great Spirit loves to be;
Its haunted groves and waters clear
Are homes of thunder and of flame;
All pass it silently and flee,
Save they who potent magic learn,
Who lonely in that dreaded fane
Resist nine days the awful powers:
And, fasting, each through pain may earn
The knowledge daring mortals gain,
If life survive those secret hours!
Away to the west! Westward ho! Westward ho!
Where over the prairies the summer winds blow!
Why known to so few were its rivers and plains,
Where rustle so tall in their ripeness the grains?
The bison and Red-men alone cared to roam
O'er realms that to millions must soon give a home;
The vast fertile levels Old Time loved to reap
The haymaker's song hath awakened from sleep.
Away to the West! Westward ho! Westward ho!
Why waited we fearing to plant and to sow?
Not ours was the waiting! By God was ordained
The hour when the ocean's grey steeds were up-reined,
And green marshes rose, and the bittern's abode
Became the Lone Land where the wild hunter strode,
And soils with grass harvests grew rich, and the clime
For us was prepared in the fulness of Time!
Away to the West! Westward ho! Westward ho!
For us 'twas prepared long ago, long ago!
There came from the Old World at last o'er the sea,
The bravest and best to this land of the free;
And, leal to their flag, won the fruits of the earth
By might that has given new nations a birth,
But found in our North-land a bride to be known
More worthy than all of the love of the throne.
Away to the West! Westward ho! Westward ho!
God's hand is our guide; 'tis His will that we go!
To lands yet more happy than Europe's, for here
We mould the young nation for Freedom to rear.
Full strongly we build, and have nought to pull down,
For, true to ourselves, we are true to the Crown;
The will of the people its honour shows forth,
As pole-star, whose radiance points steadfastly north.
Away to the West! Westward ho! Westward ho!
Where rooted in Freedom shall Liberty grow!
Right good is the loam that for five score of days
Its rolling lands show, or its plains' scented ways:
Nor used is the pick, if the earth has concealed
The waters it keeps for the house and the field;
The spade finds enough, until burst on the sight
Our Rocky Sierras' sweet rivers of light.
Away to the West! Westward ho! Westward ho!
From mountains and lakes there the great rivers flow!
If told of Brazil or great Mexico's gold,
Of Cotton States' warmth and of Canada's cold,
Go say how we prize, like the ore of the mine,
The snows sapphire-shadowed in winter's sunshine;
--Our gayest of seasons! which guards the good soil
For races who won it through faith and through toil.
Away to the West! Westward ho! Westward ho!
Bright sparkles its winter, and light is its snow!
There gaily, in measureless meadows, all day
The sun and the breeze with the grass are at play,
In billows that never can break as they pass,
But toss the gold foam of the flower-laden grass,
The bright yellow disks of the asters upcast
On waves that in blossoms flow silently past.
Away to the West! Westward-ho! Westward ho!
Where over the prairies the summer winds blow.
The West for you, boys! where our God has made room
For field and for city, for plough and for loom.
The West for you, girls! for our Canada deems
Love's home better luck than a gold-seeker's dreams.
Away! and your children shall bless you, for they
Shall rule o'er a land fairer far than Cathay.
Away to the West! Westward ho! Westward ho!
Thou God of their fathers, Thy blessing bestow!
_THE SONG OF THE SIX SISTERS._
[Manitoba, Assiniboia, Saskatchewan, Athabasca, Alberta,
and British Columbia.]
At a feast in the east of our central plains,
Girt with the sheaths of the wheaten grains,
Manitoba lay where the sunflowers blow,
And sang to the chime of the Red River's flow:
"I am child of the spirit whom all men own,
My prairie no longer is green and lone,
For the hosts of the settler have ringed me round,
And his bride am I with the harvest crowned."
On her steed at speed o'er her burning grass
We saw Assiniboia pass:
"The bison and antelope still are mine,
And the Indian wars on my boundary-line;
Where his knife is dyed I love to ride
By the cactus blooms or the marshes wide,
While the quivering columns of thunder fire
Give light to the darkened land's desire."
"To the North look ye forth," cried the voice of one,
Who dwells where the great twin rivers run;--
"Or farther yet," Athabaska cried,
"Where mightier waters the hills divide:
'Peace' is their name, and the musk ox there
Still feeds alone on the meadows fair."
"Nay, stay," said the first; "the white man's word
Hath called me the kindest to horse and herd."
From on high where the sky and the snow-born rill
Each morn and eve to the rose-tints thrill,
Sang the fairy Sprite of the Fountain Land:
"A daughter of her, whose sceptred hand
With the flag of the woven crosses three
Hath rule o'er the ocean, hath christened me,
And my waves their homage repeat again,
And that standard greet in the loyal main."
And their lays in her praise then sang the four:
"Alberta has all we can boast and more:
The scented breath of the plains is hers,
The odours sweet of the sage and firs;
There the coal breaks forth on her rolling sod,
And the winters flee at the winds of God.
Columbia, come! for we want but thee;
Now tell of thyself and thy silent sea!"
"Clad with the silver snow, a pine
Guarded the grot of a golden mine,
And dark was the shade which the mist-wreaths cast
Though brightly they shone on the mountain vast.
Stars and sun o'er that cavern swept,
Where on the glittering sand I slept;
But none could behold me, or know where was stored
More treasure than monarch e'er won with the sword.
Floods in fathomless torrents fall
Through the awful rifts of the Alpine wall,
Where I passed in the night over forest and glen,
O'er the ships on the sea and the cities of men--
Swifter than morn! His shafts of love
Behind me caught the peaks above,
But touched not my wings: I had gone e'er he came
Where the vine-maple fringed the deep forest with flame.
Strewn o'er the sombre walls of green
In saffron or in crimson sheen,
How lovely those gardens of autumn, where rolled
In smoke and in fire the red lava of old!
Soon I reached my sea-girt home
Sheltered from the breakers' foam.
Seek not for mine isle, for a thousand and more
Lie asleep in the calm near the mountainous shore.
Oft I roam in moon ray clear
With the puma and the deer;
From the boughs of Madrona that droop o'er a bay
I watch the fish dart from the beams of the day.
Mine are tranquil gulfs, nor give
Sign to lovers where I live;
But the sea-rock betrays where my netting is hung,
When the meshes of light o'er its mosses are flung!"
She ceased, and then in chorus strong
The blended voices floated long:--
"No sirens we, of shore or wave,
To sing of love and tempt the brave:
We fled their path, and freedom found
Where blue horizons stretched around,
And lilies in the grasses made
A double sunshine on each blade.
No wooers we, but, wooed by them,
We yield our maiden diadem,
And welcome now, no longer mute,
Tried hearts so true and resolute!"
_THE PRAIRIE ROSES._
The Noon-Sun prayed a prairie rose
To blanch for him her blossom's hue,
But to the Plain all love she owes;
Beneath that mother's grass she grew.
And sheltered by her verdant blades,
Their tints of green she made her own;
But still the Sun sought out her shades
And said, "Be my white bride alone!"
Then, sorrowing for his grievous pain,
Her sister loved the amorous god,
And blushed, ashamed, as o'er the plain
His parting beams illumed the sod.
So one sweet rose yet wears the green,
And one in sunset's crimson glows;
Still one untouched by love is seen,
And one in conscious beauty blows.
"Did earth ever see
On thy prairie's line
Tribes older than thine,
Old Chief of the Cree?"
"Before us we know
Of none who lived here;
Our shafts bade them go.
"But others have share
Of lake and of land,
A swift-footed band
No arrow can scare.
"Their coming has been
When flowers are gay;
On islet and bay
Their footprints are seen.
"There dance little feet
Light grasses they break;
Beneath the blue lake
Must be their retreat.
"We listen, and none
Hears ever a sound;
But where, lily-crowned,
Floats the isle in the sun,
"Three children we see
Like sunbeams at play.
And, voiceless as they,
Dogs bounding in glee.
"Of old they were there!
Ever young, who are these
Whom Death cannot seize?
What Spirits of air?"
_THE "QU'APPELLE" VALLEY._
Morning, lighting all the prairies,
Once of old came, bright as now,
To the twin cliffs, sloping wooded
From the vast plain's even brow:
When the sunken valley's levels
With the winding willowed stream,
Cried, "Depart, night's mists and shadows;
Open-flowered, we love to dream!"
Then in his canoe a stranger
Passing onward heard a cry;
Thought it called his name and answered,
But the voice would not reply;
Waited listening, while the glory
Rose to search each steep ravine,
Till the shadowed terraced ridges
Like the level vale were green.
Strange as when on Space the voices
Of the stars' hosannahs fell,
To this wilderness of beauty
Seemed his call "Qu'Appelle? Qu'Appelle?"
For a day he tarried, hearkening,
Wondering, as he went his way,
Whose the voice that gladly called him
With the merry tones of day?
Was it God, who gave dumb Nature
Voice and words to shout to one
Who, a pioneer, came, sunlike,
Down the pathways of the sun?
Harbinger of thronging thousands,
Bringing plain, and vale, and wood,
Things the best and last created,
Human hearts and brotherhood!
Long the doubt and eager question
Yet that valley's name shall tell,
For its farmers' laughing children
Gravely call it "The Qu'Appelle!"
Where the snow-world of the mountains
Fronts the sea-like world of sward,
And encamped along the prairies
Tower the white peaks heavenward;
Where they stand by dawn rose-coloured
Or dim-silvered by the stars,
And behind their shadowed portals
Evening draws her lurid bars,
Lies a country whose sweet grasses
Richly clothe the rolling plain;
All its swelling upland pastures
Speak of Plenty's happy reign;
There the bison herds in autumn
Roamed wide sunlit solitudes,
Seamed with many an azure river
Bright in burnished poplar woods.
Night-dews pearled the painted hide-tents,
"Moyas" named, that on the mead
Sheltered dark-eyed women wearing
Braided hair and woven bead.
Never man had seen their lodges,
Never warrior crossed the slopes
Where they rode, and where they hunted
Imu bulls and antelopes.
Masterless, how swift their riding!
While the wild steeds onward flew,
From round breasts and arms unburdened
Freedom's winds their tresses blew.
Only when the purple shadows
Slowly veiled the darkening plain
Would they sorrow that the Sun-god
Dearer loved his Alp's domain.
Southward, nearer to the gorges
Whence the sudden warm winds blow,
Shaking all the pine's huge branches,
Melting all the fallen snow,
Dwelt the Seksika, the Blackfeet;
They whose ancestor, endued,
With the dark salve's magic fleetness,
First on foot the deer pursued.
Gallantly the Braves bore torture
While their Sun-dance fasts were held,
While the drums beat, and the virgins
Saw the pains by manhood quelled.
As each writhing form triumphant
Called on the Great Spirit's might,
On his son, whose voice in thunder
Summons airy hosts to fight.
"Star-Child," praised as bearing all things,
Praised as Brave who never feared,
Young, but famed above his elders,
Chief to man and maid endeared,
Went with comrades, quiver-harnessed,
O'er the hills, and face to face,
Where the bright leaves trembled round them,
Found the fearless huntress race
Was it peace or was it warfare?
Starting back, their bows they drew,
But a mystic power compelled them,
And no word, no arrow flew.
Nearer to each other drawing,
Strength and beauty beckoned "Peace,"
Each the other envious eyeing,
Jealous lest their hunt should cease!
"They are strong; could not they aid us?"
Thought the maiden band amazed;
"Conquered, these could well obey us!"
Dreamed the warriors as they gazed.
Falsely answered cunning "Star-Child,"
Smiling as they slowly met,
While the women's frequent questions
Were to laughter's music set,
"Who is chief among you, tell us?"
"He is far! Is she your queen
With the shells and deer-teeth broidered,
Decked with sheen of gold between?"
"Yea; she slays the bear, the grizzly:
Light her empire on us lies;
With the love she rules her courser
Guides and guards us 'Laughing Eyes'!"
Vaunted then the men their "Star-Child:"
"Peerless soldier, keen-eyed king!
From the girl he weds shall heroes
Worthy war-god's lineage spring.
Know ye not how old enchantment
Saw his storm-born sire appear,
Armed, upon a peak dark-lifted
O'er the snows and glaciers drear?
His the darts divine, whose breaking
Thrice hath some disaster sent,
Shafts that killed and then returning,
Kept his armoury unspent."
"Give us of these arrows. Bring him!"
Cried the maidens. "Nay," they said;
"Come with us and share our hunting
Ere the autumn leaves are shed."
Answered they: "In painted lodges
Berries we have dried and meat;
Come again! e'er comes the winter,
Let us hear your horses' feet."
And they sprang into their saddles,
Swept, white-splashing, through a stream
Red and saffron hued, the pageant
Crossed the blue translucent gleam.
Then unwilling, as they vanished,
"Star-Child" slow to camp returned;
Told the council of the Blackfeet
All the marvels he had learned;
Dressed him in his chief's apparel,
Rode to where, within the glen,
Lay the trail that led him onward
To the town, unknown of men.
From each Moya thronged the dwellers:
"Hath the chief the arrows sent?"
"I am Chief; behold me; trust me.
Lead me to your ruler's tent."
"He hath not the shafts enchanted;
Thus unarmed came never chief!"
Bent a thousand bows around him:
"Back or die, impostor, thief!"
Angry, yet afraid to anger,
Lest he lose those "Laughing-Eyes,"
He, obeying, vowed to conquer;
Scorning to make vain replies,
Went; and weary seemed the journey!
All along the yellow plain
Red as rose-leaves in the grasses
Flushed his dusky cheeks with pain.
Grave, in silent circles seated
'Neath their Moya's smoke-tanned cone,
Round the fire his chieftains heard him,
Holding each a pipe's red stone.
Pausing long, they gave their counsel,
Different from their wont; for here
All the young men spoke for kindness,
All the old men were severe.
But the Braves rode forth at morning,
Half the magic darts they bore;
Pledge so precious of their friendship
None had thought to give before!
To the huntress nation welcome,
Waking song in every tent,
Where the hours were passed in feasting
And the days to love were lent!
Thus the maidens were the victors,
For to them the warriors came:
"Laughing-Eyes" but loved the "Star-Child"
When his shafts her own became.
Ah! but where is man or woman
Who may boast of triumph long?
Nought abides, and mighty nations
Cannot ever more be strong.
So each huntress found a master,
Yielding to her heart's new birth,
And no more along the prairie
Beat her steed the sounding earth.
Yearly yet the Blackfeet women
Meet and dance and sing the day
When through love they won, and, winning,
Freedom passed with love away!
_SAN GABRIEL, ON THE PACIFIC COAST._
Grey-cowled monk, whose faith so earnest
Guides these Indians' childlike hearts,
As their hands to toil thou turnest,
Teaching them the Builder's arts,
Speak thy thought! as now they gather
Round the white walls on the plain,
Rearing them for God the Father,
And the glory of New Spain.
"Thou, St. Gabriel, knowest only
Why thy holy bells I raise,
To no turret proud and lonely,
There to sound the hours of praise;--
Why I keep them close beside me,
Framed within the church's walls,
Here where heathen lands shall hide me
Until death to judgment calls."
Then St Gabriel in high heaven
Told the saints this mortal's lot,
As the Angelus at even
Rose to day that dieth not;
And from out the nightly wonder
Of the darkened world would float,
Mingling with the near sea's thunder,
Yonder belfry's golden note.
"Two there were, whose loves were blighted
By the Spanish pride abhorred,
And their vows and wealth they plighted
To the Missions of the Lord.
For his church these bells she gave him,
When within their glowing mould,
She had cast what were her treasures,
--All her ornaments of gold.
"So do these, that to his seeming
Were but good as touched by her,
Ring to seek for love redeeming
All who sorrow, all who err.
Yes, though human love be ever
Heard upon the throbbing air,
This shall make his life's endeavour
Stronger through a woman's prayer.
"God is not a Lord requiring
Sacrifice of memories dear,
And their love in life untiring
To His life hath brought then near.
Thus his wish to have beside him
That which seems her voice, is good:
Lovingly the Lord hath tried him,
And his heart hath understood."
A ceaseless, awful, falling sea, whose sound
Shakes earth and air, and whose resistless stroke
Shoots high the volleying foam like cannon smoke!
How dread and beautiful the floods, when, crowned
By moonbeams on their rushing ridge, they bound
Into the darkness and the veiling spray;
Or, jewel-hued and rainbow-dyed, when day
Lights the pale torture of the gulf profound!
So poured the avenging streams upon the world
When swung the ark upon the deluge wave,
And, o'er each precipice in grandeur hurled,
The endless torrents gave mankind a grave.
God's voice is mighty, on the water loud,
Here, as of old, in thunder, glory, cloud!
_ON CHIEF MOUNTAIN_
A GREAT ROCK ON THE AMERICAN NORTH-WEST FRONTIER.
Among white peaks a rock, hewn altar-wise,
Marks the long frontier of our mighty lands.
Apart its dark tremendous sculpture stands,
Too steep for snow, and square against the skies.
In other shape its buttressed masses rise
When seen from north or south; but eastward set,
God carved it where two sovereignties are met,
An altar to His peace, before men's eyes.
Of old there Indian mystics, fasting, prayed;
And from its base to distant shores the streams
Take sands of gold, to be at last inlaid
Where ocean's floor in shadowed splendour gleams.
So in our nations' sundered lives be blent
Love's golden memories from one proud descent!
Spake one upon the vessel's prow, before
The sinking sun had kissed the glittering seas:
"'Twas here Columbus with his Genoese
Steered his frail barks toward the unknown store,
With hope unfaltering, though all hope seemed o'er;
Calm 'mid the mutineers the prophet mind
Saw the New World to which their eyes were blind,
Heard on its continents the breakers' roar,
Told of the golden promise of the main,
While cursed his crew, and called a madman's dream
The land his ashes only hold for Spain!
It rose on dim horizon with the gleam
Of morn, proclaiming to the kneeling throng
All treasures theirs, because one heart was strong."
_ON THE NEW PROVINCE "ALBERTA."_
[This Province was called after the Princess, one of whose Christian
names is Alberta.]
In token of the love which thou hast shown
For this wide land of freedom, I have named
A province vast, and for its beauty famed,
By thy dear name to be hereafter known.
Alberta shall it be! Her fountains thrown
From alps unto three oceans, to all men
Shall vaunt her loveliness e'en now; and when,
Each little hamlet to a city grown,
And numberless as blades of prairie grass,
Or the thick leaves in distant forest bower,
Great peoples hear the giant currents pass,
Still shall the waters, bringing wealth and power,
Speak the loved name,--the land of silver springs--
Worthy the daughter of our English kings.
CHIEFLY FROM HIGHLAND STORIES.
Oft the savage Tale in telling
Less of Love than Wrath and Hate,
Hath within its fierceness dwelling
Some pure note compassionate.
Mark, if rude their nature, stronger,
Manlier are the minds that keep
Thought on rightful vengeance longer
Than on those who can but weep.
Better sing the horrid battle
Than its cause of crime and wrong;
Sing great life-deeds! the death-rattle
Is too common for a song.
Lays where man in fight rejoices
Sang our Sires, from Sire to Son;
Heard and loved the hero voices,
"Dare, and more than life is won!"
Lo, a castle, tall, lake-mirrored,
Ringed around by mountain forms,
Roofless, ruined, still defying
Summer's rains and winter's storms.
Every shattered lifeless window,
Every stone in every wall,
Keep and gable, broken stairway,
Woman's faithful love recall.
Colin, called "the Swarthy," famous
In the annals of Lochow,
When a child, was gently fostered
Near where Orchy's waters flow.
The Black Knight, his sire, could value
Vassal's love and hardy fare;
To a gudewife gave him, saying,
"Train him with the sons you bear."
Strong he grew, and brave, till armies
Praised in him a man of men.
Came a peace--then love;--a lady
Ruled with him the Orchy's glen.
But afar from over Ocean
Rose a cry for Christian aid:
Blessed of Pope, 'neath holy banners
Sailed he for the great crusade.
Leaving with his weeping lady
Half their marriage ring, whereon
Written stood his name, and taking
Half where hers, engraven, shone.
"If no tidings reach thee, darling,
Blame my death." But she through tears
Answered: "I'll believe thee living
Though I hear not seven years."
Lonely lived the lady, lonely:
Riches grew, and brought her all
Save the loving words whose echo
Seemed to linger in his hall.
Voiceless passed the years; and Rumour
Falsely slew him, whose steel mail
Flashed o'er white walls, azure sea girt,
Watched, and feared by Moslem sail.
Rhodes' fair island saw his valour;
'Mid her gardens he had bled;
Glowing as her sun, his love-words
Homeward to his lady sped.
Ah, they reached her not, to banish
Days of care, and nights of woe;
Their warm sunshine never parted
Clouds that darkened o'er Lochow,
Weary is her lot whose favour
For her wealth is held a prize;
Oft she finds no truthful homage,
Sees no love in pleading eyes.
Man gains strength from gold, but woman
Worse than dross her wealth may call;
Avarice is her haunting suitor,
Giving naught and seeking all.
Messages from the Crusader
Fell into a Baron's hands;
Who, with subtle treason working,
Coveted dark Colin's lands:
Spread the base and cruel rumours,
Preyed upon the aching heart,
Asked her year by year in marriage,
Falsely played the lover's part.
And the heartless seasons vanished,
Other twain were nearly sped;
Then at last his suit seemed answered,
Silently she bent her head.
Gaily, loudly, laughing o'er her,
Named the Baron hour and day.
But she said: "No, for this wedding
First I'll build a castle gay.
"When its halls are built, we'll tarry
Where our guests can praise our cheer;
When the feast-smoke from its chimneys
Rises, then the day is near."
So the building rose, and slowly
Walls and stairway, keep and tower
Stone by stone completed, sadly
Heralded the wedding hour.
Shall it come, and never mercy
Shown of God avert the doom?
Shall the longing for the absent
Turn to feasting o'er his tomb?
Yes. The Castle's new possessor
Soon shall follow thronging guests:
As the Lake reflects the turrets
Men shall second his behests.
Mournful, where they laughed so gladly,
A poor beggar, haggard, grey,
Trod with pain the stony roadside,
Often halting by the way.
He too reached the Castle's portal,
Stood within its archway grim,
Loitering in the path of others;
Who would step aside for him?
Pushed a henchman rudely, saying,
"Get you hence," but still he stood:
Then they gave him bread and water,
"Loiter not, you have your food."
Twice came others, in his wallet
Thrusting bread and meat, and said:
"Now away, why stand you troubling,
Here you cannot make your bed."
"Drink from her own hands imploring,
Tell your Lady here I wait!"
Wondering went she where the beggar
Shadowed stood within the gate.
Now she pours the crystal water,
Quickly he the cup returns;
Oh! what golden circlet broken
Sees she there that gleams and burns?
Eagerly she grasped the token,
Turning to the light away;
Came again, and crying "Colin!"
On the beggar's breast she lay.
Spoke he sadly: "Hast thou truly
Still the heart I loved? I know--
They have told me--that thou takest
To thy love my deadly foe.
"The gudewife, my foster mother,
Unto whom I made me known
When I reached the Orchy, told me
How the rumour base had grown:
"I was dead, or cared not for thee
Who received no word of mine;
'Twas thy lover's doing, woman,
Hungering for my wealth and thine!
"'Take,' the gudewife said, 'a beggar's
Old attire; and see the mist
Where the wedding smoke is ordered
By the lips which thou hast kissed.'
"Thou hast put our ring together
Can it be as one again?"
Then she raised her face, and proudly
Spoke unto her serving-men:
"See you where the Baron's people
Come with him along the road?
Go and tell them quickly, 'Colin
Rules again his own abode.'"
Fled the traitor, pulses beating,
Not with love, but craven fear;
And the beggar found the treasure
That to noble hearts is dear.
Found the love no time had altered,
Honoured lived, and honoured died;
And in Rhodes and in Glenorchy
Honoured shall his name abide.
Dark, with shrouds of mist surrounded.
Rise the mountains from the shore,
Where the galleys of the Islesmen
Stand updrawn, their voyage o'er.
Horns this morn are hoarsely sounding
From Loch Buy's ancient wall,
While for chase the guests and vassals
Gather in the court and hall.
Hounds, whose voices could give warning
From far moors of stags at bay,
Quiver in each iron muscle,
Howl, impatient of delay.
Henchmen, waiting for the signal,
At their chiefs imperious word
Start, to drive from hill and corrie
To the pass the watchful herd.