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The last blithe shout hath died upon our ear, And harvest-home hath hush'd the clanging wain, On the waste hill no forms of life appear,
Save where, sad laggard of the autumnal train, Some age-struck wanderer gleans few ears of scatter'd
Deem'st thou these sadden'd scenes have pleasure
still, Lovest thou through Autumn's fading realms to stray, To see the heath-flower wither'd on the hill, To listen to the wood's expiring lay, To note the red leaf shivering on the spray, To mark the last bright tints the mountain stain, On the waste fields to trace the gleaner's way,
And moralize on mortal joy and pain ?O! if such scenes thou lovest, scorn not the minstrel
No! do not scorn, although its hoarser note
Through fields time-wasted, on sad inquest bound, Where happier bards of yore have richer harvest
So shalt thou list, and haply not unmoved,
For, when on Coolin's hills the lights decay, With such the Seer of Skye the eve beguiles; 'Tis known amid the pathless wastes of Reay,
In Harries known, and in Iona's piles, Where rest from mortal coil the Mighty of the Isles.
I. “WAKE, Maid of Lorn!" the Minstrels sung. Thy rugged halls, Artornish! rung, And the dark seas, thy towers that lave, Heaved on the beach a softer wave, As 'mid the tuneful choir to keep The diapason of the Deep. Lull'd were the winds on Inninmore, And green Loch-Alline’s woodland shore, As if wild woods and waves had pleasure In listing to the lovely measure. And ne'er to symphony more sweet Gave mountain echoes answer meet, Since, met from mainland and from isle, Ross, Arran, Ilay, and Argyle, Each minstrel's tributary lay Paid homage to the festal day. Dull and dishonour'd were the bard, Worthless of guerdon and regard, Deaf to the hope of minstrel fame, Or lady's smiles, his noblest aim, Who on that morn's resistless call Were silent in Artornish hall.
* The seal displays a taste for music, which could scarcely be expected from his habits and local predilections. They will long follow a boat in which any musical instrument is played, and even a tune simply whistled has attractions for them. The Dean of the Isles says of Heiskar, a small uninhabited rock, about twelve (Scottish) miles from the isle of Uist, that an infinite slaughter of seals takes place there.
“ She comes not yet,” grey Ferrand cried;
Brethren, let softer spell be tried, Those notes prolong'd, that soothing theme, Which best may mix with Beauty's dream, And whisper, with their silvery tone, The hope she loves, yet fears to own." He spoke, and on the harp-strings died The strains of flattery and of pride; More soft, more low, more tender fell The lay of love he bade them tell.
Wake, Maid of Lorn! the moments fly,
Which yet that maiden-name allow; Wake, Maiden, wake! the hour is nigh,
When Love shall claim a plighted vow. By Fear, thy bosom's fluttering guest,
By Hope, that soon shall fears remove, We bid thee break the bonds of rest,
And wake thee at the call of Love!
Wake, Edith, wake! in yonder bay
Lies many a galley gaily mann'd, We hear the merry pibrochs play,
We see the streamers' silken band. What Chieftain's praise these pibrochs swell,
What crest is on these banners wove, The harp, the minstrel, dare not tell
The riddle must be read by Love."
Retired her maiden train among,
But tamed the minstrel's pride had been
- the bridal hour-