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THE BRAVE ROLAND.*
THE brave Roland!-the brave Roland!-
That he had fall'n in fight;
And thy faithful bosom swoon'd with pain,
For the loss of thine own true knight.
*The tradition which forms the substance of these stanzas is still preserved in Germany. An ancient tower on a height, called the Rolandseck, a few miles above Bonn on the Rhine, is shewn as the habitation which Roland built in sight of a nunnery, into which his mistress had retired, on having heard an unfounded account of his death. Whatever may be thought of the credibility of the legend, its scenery must be recollected
But why so rash has she ta’en the veil,
yon Nonnenwerder's cloisters pale?
For her vow had scarce been sworn,
And the fatal mantle o'er her flung,
When the Drachenfells to a trumpet rung-
Woe! woe! each heart shall bleed-shall break!
Had he come but yester-even ;
with pleasure by every one who has ever visited the romantic landscape of the Drachenfells, the Rolandseck, and the beautiful adjacent islet of the Rhine, where a nunnery still stands.
Yet Roland the brave-Roland the true
He could not bid that spot adieu ;
It was dear still 'midst his woes; For he loved to breathe the neighb'ring air,
And to think she blest him in her
When the Halleluiah rose.
There's yet one window of that pile,
Which he built above the Nun's
Thence sad and oft look'd he
(When the chant and organ sounded slow)
On the mansion of his love below,
For herself he might not see.
She died!-He sought the battle-plain;
Her image fill'd his dying brain,
When he fell and wish'd to fall:
And her name was in his latest sigh, When Roland, the flower of chivalry, Expired at Roncevall.