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And hamlets brown, and dim-discover'd spires;
And hears their simple bell; and marks o'er all

Thy dewy fingers draw
The gradual dusky veil.

While Spring shall pour his showers, as oft he wont,
And bathe thy breathing tresses, meekest Eve!

While Summer loves to sport
Beneath thy lingering light;

While sallow Autumn fills thy lap with leaves;
Or Winter, yelling through the troublous air,

Affrights thy shrinking train
And rudely rends thy robes;

So long, regardful of thy quiet rule,
Shall Fancy, Friendship, Science, smiling Peace,

Thy gentlest influence own,
And love thy favourite name!

208

GEORGE SEWELL

[d. 1726]
THE DYING MAN IN HIS GARDEN
Why, Damon, with the forward day
Dost thou thy little spot survey,
From tree to tree, with doubtful cheer,
Pursue the progress of the year,
What winds arise, what rains descend,
When thou before that year shalt end?

What do thy noontide walks avail,
To clear the leaf, and pick the snail,
Then wantonly to death decree
An insect usefuller than thee?
Thou and the worm are brother-kind,
As low, as earthy, and as blind.

Vain wretch! canst thou expect to see
The downy peach make court to thee?
Or that thy sense shall ever meet
The bean-flower's deep-embosom'd sweet
Exhaling with an evening blast?
Thy evenings then will all be past!
Thy narrow pride, thy fancied green
(For vanity's in little seen)
All must be left when Death appears,
In spite of wishes, groans, and tears;
Nor one of all thy plants that grow
But Rosemary will with thee go.

1

299

ALISON RUTHERFORD COCKBURN

[1712-1794]
THE FLOWERS OF THE FOREST
I've seen the smiling

Of Fortune beguiling;
I've felt all its favours, and found its decay;

Sweet was its blessing,

Kind its caressing;
But now it is fled-fled far away.

I've seen the forest

Adorned the foremost,
With flowers of the fairest, most pleasant and gay;

Sae bonnie was their blooming!

Their scent the air perfuming !
But now they are withered and a' wede away.

I've seen the morning

With gold the hills adorning,
And loud tempest storming before the mid-day.

I've seen Tweed's silver streams,

Shining in the sunny beams

Grow drumly and dark as he rowed on his way. 1 “The flowers of the Forest” in this and the following song are the men of Ettrick Forest in Selkirkshire who fell at the battle of Flodden.

Oh, fickle Fortune!

Why this cruel sporting?
Oh, why still perplex us, poor sons of a day?

Nae mair your smiles can cheer me,

Nae mair your frowns can fear me;
For the flowers of the forest are a' wede away.

JANE ELLIOT

[1727-1805] LAMENT FOR FLODDEN

300

I've heard them lilting' at our ewe-milking,

Lasses a' lilting before dawn o' day;
But now they are moaning on ilka green loaning'

For the flowers of the forest are a' wede away.

At bughts,' in the morning, nae blythe lads are scorning,

Lasses are lonely and dowie® and wae;
Nae daffin', nae gabbin', but sighing and sabbing,

Ilk ane lifts her leglin ® and hies her away.
In har'st, at the shearing, nae youths now are jeering,

Bandsters 10 are lyart," and runkled," and gray;
At fair or at preaching, nae wooing, nae fleeching -

The Flowers of the Forest are a' wede away.
At e'en, in the gloaming, nae younkers are roaming

'Bout stacks wi' the lasses at bogle to play;
But ilk ane sits drearie, lamenting her dearie-

The Flowers of the Forest are weded away.

Dool and wae for the order, sent our lads to the Border!

The English, for ance, by guile wan the day;
The Flowers of the Forest, that fought aye the fore-

most,

The prime of our land, are cauld in the clay. 2 Singing.

2 Lane.

3 Withered. 4 Pens, folds. Doleful. ? Jeering. Toying. 8 Milking-stool. 9 Harvest.

10 Makers of strawbands for the sheaves. 11 Withered.

12 Wrinkled. 13 Flattering.

We'll hear nae mair lilting at the ewe-milking;

Women and bairns are heartless and wae; Sighing and moaning on ilka green loaning

The Flowers of the Forest are a' wede away.

301

CHRISTOPHER SMART

[1722-1770]

A SONG TO DAVID
O THOU, that sitt'st upon a throne,
With harp of high, majestic tone,

To praise the King of kings:
And voice of heaven, ascending, swell,
Which, while its deeper notes excel,

Clear as a clarion rings:

To bless each valley, grove, and coast,
And charm the cherubs to the post

Of gratitude in throngs;
To keep the days on Zion's Mount,
And send the year to his account,

With dances and with songs:

O servant of God's holiest charge,
The minister of praise at large,

Which thou mayst now receive;
From thy blest mansion hail and hear,
From topmost eminence appear

To this the wreath I weave.

Great, valiant, pious, good, and clean,
Sublime, contemplative, serene,

Strong, constant, pleasant, wise !
Bright effluence of exceeding grace;
Best man! the swiftness and the race,

The peril and the prize!

Great-from the lustre of his crown,
From Samuel's horn, and God's renown,

Which is the people's voice;
For all the host, from rear to van,
Applauded and embraced the man-

The man of God's own choice.

Valiant-the word, and up he rose; The fight-he triumphed o'er the foes

Whom God's just laws abhor; And, armed in gallant faith, he took Against the boaster, from the brook,

The weapons of the war. Pious-magnificent and grand, 'Twas he the famous temple plann'd,

(The seraph in his soul :) Foremost to give the Lord his dues, Foremost to bless the welcome news,

And foremost to condole.

Good—from Jehudah's genuine vein,
From God's best nature, good in grain,

His aspect and his heart:
To pity, to forgive, to save,
Witness En-gedi's conscious cave,

And Shimei's blunted dart.

Clean—if perpetual prayer be pure,
And love, which could itself inure

To fasting and to fear-
Clean in his gestures, hands, and feet,
To smite the lyre, the dance complete,

To play the sword and spear.
Sublime-invention ever young,
Of vast conception, towering tongue,

To God the eternal theme;
Notes from yon exaltations caught,
Unrivalled royalty of thought,

O'er meaner strains supreme.

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