Page images
[ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors]

As on their slender forms I gaze,
Methinks they brighten to a blaze!
With noiseless step and taper bright,
What are yon forms that meet my sight?
Slowly they move, while every eye
Is heavenward raised in ecstasy.
'Tis the fair, spotless, vestal train,
That seek in prayer the midnight fane.
And, hark! what more than mortal sound
Of music breathes the pile around ?
'Tis the soft-chanted choral song,
Whose tones the echoing aisles prolong;
Till, thence return'd, they softly stray
O'er Cluden's wave, with fond delay;
Now on the rising gale swell high,
And now in fainting murmurs die.
The boatmen on Nith's gentle stream,
That glistens in the pale moonbeam,
Suspend their dashing oars to hear
The holy anthem, loud and clear;
Each worldly thought a while forbear,
And mutter forth a half-form'd prayer.
But, as I gaze, the vision fails,

Like frost-work touch'd by southern gales ;
The altar sinks, the tapers fade,
And all the splendid scene's decay'd ;
In window fair the painted pane
No longer glows with holy stain,

Lincluden abbey.

But through the broken glass the gale
Blows chilly from the misty vale;
The bird of eve flits sullen by,
Her home these aisles and arches high !
The choral hymn, that erst so clear
Broke softly sweet on Fancy's ear,
Is drown'd amid the mournful scream
That breaks the magic of


dream! Roused by the sound, I start and see The ruin'd sad reality!

[graphic][merged small][merged small]

Now Nature hangs her mantle green

On every blooming tree, And spreads her sheets o' daisies white

Out o'er the grassy lea :
Now Phæbus cheers the crystal streams,

And glads the azure skies ;
But nought can glad the weary wight

That fast in durance lies.

Dueen Mary’s Lament.

Now lav'rocks wake the merry morn,

Aloft on dewy wing;
The merle, in his noontide bower,

Makes woodland echoes ring;
The mavis wild, wi' mony a note,

Sings drowsy day to rest :
In love and freedom they rejoice,

Wi care nor thrall opprest.

Now blooms the lily by the bank,

The primrose down the brae ;
The hawthorn's budding in the glen,

And milk-white is the slae ;
The meanest hind in fair Scotland

May rove their sweets amang ;
But I, the queen of a' Scotland,

Maun lie in prison strang!

I was the queen o' bonny France,

Where happy I hae been ; Fu' lightly rase I in the morn,

As blithe lay down at e'en : And I'm the sov'reign of Scotland,

And mony a traitor there ; Yet here I lie in foreign bands,

And never-ending care.

Dueen Mary's Lament.

But as for thee, thou false woman !

My sister and my fae,
Grim Vengeance yet shall whet a sword

That through thy soul shall gae!
The weeping blood in woman's breast

Was never known to thee; Nor the balm that draps on wounds of woe

Frae woman's pitying ee.

My son! my son! may kinder stars

Upon thy fortune shine!
And may those pleasures gild thy reign,

That ne'er wad blink on mine!
God keep thee frae thy mother's faes,

Or turn their hearts to thee:
And where thou meet'st thy mother's friend,

Remember him for me!

Oh! soon to me may summer suns

Nae mair light up the morn!
Nae mair to me the autumn winds

Wave o'er the yellow corn!
And in the narrow house o death

Let winter round me rave;
And the next flowers that deck the spring

Bloom on my peaceful grave!

« PreviousContinue »