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LOCH NA GARR.
Away, ye gay landscapes, ye gardens of roses !
In you let the minions of luxury rove; Restore me the rocks, where the snow-flake reposes,
Though still they are sacred to freedom and love : Yet, Caledonia, beloved are thy mountains,
Round their white summits though elements war ; Though cataracts foam 'stead of smooth-flowing foun
I sigh for the valley of dark Loch na Garr.
Ah ! there my young footsteps in infancy wander'd ;
My cap was the bonnet, my cloak was the plaid ; On chieftains long perish'd my memory ponder'd,
As daily I strode through the pine-cover'd glade : I sought not my home till the day's dying glory
Gave place to the rays of the bright polar star ; For fancy was cheer'd by traditional story,
Disclosed by the natives of dark Loch na Garr.
“ Shades of the dead ! have I not heard your voices
Rise on the night-rolling breath of the gale ?" Surely the soul of the hero rejoices,
And rides on the wind o'er his own Highland vale. Round Loch na Garr while the stormy mist gathers,
Winter presides in his cold icy car :
They dwell in the tempests of dark Loch na Garr.
“ Illstarr'd, though brave, did no visions foreboding
Tell you that fate had forsaken your cause ?" Ah! were you destined to die at Culloden,
Victory crown'd not your fall with applause : Still were you happy in death's earthy slumber,
You rest with your clan in the caves of Braemar; The pibroch resounds, to the piper's loud number,
Your deeds on the echoes of dark Loch na Garr.
Years have rollid on, Loch na Garr, since I left you,
Years must elapse ere I tread you again : Nature of verdure and flow'rs has bereft you,
Yet still are you dearer than Albion's plain. England ! thy beauties are tame and domestic
To one who has roved on the mountains afar : Oh for the crags that are wild and majestic !
The steep frowning glories of dark Loch na Garr!
WELL! THOU ART HAPPY.
Well! thou art happy, and I feel
That I should thus be happy too;
Warmly, as it was wont to do.
Thy husband's blest—and 'twill impart
Some pangs to view his happier lot :
Would hate him, if he loved thee not !
When late I saw thy favourite child,
I thought my jealous heart would break; But when the unconscious infant smiled,
I kiss'd it for its mother's sake.
I kiss'd it,—and repressed my sighs
Its father in its face to see ; But then it had its mother's eyes,
And they were all to love and me.
Mary, adieu ! I must away :
While thou art blest I'll not repine ; But near thee I can never stay ;
My heart would soon again be thine.
I deem'd that time, I deem'd that pride
Had quench'd at length my boyish flame : Nor knew, till seated by thy side,
My heart in all, -save hope,—the same.
Yet was I calm : I knew the time
My breast would thrill before thy look ; But now to tremble were a crime
We met,--and not a nerve was shook.
I saw thee gaze upon my face,
Yet met with no confusion there : One only feeling could'st thou trace ;
The sullen calmness of despair.
Away ! away! my early dream
Remembrance never must awake; Oh! where is Lethe's fabled stream !
My foolish heart be still, or break.
EPISTLE TO A FRIEND.
IN ANSWER TO SOME LINES EXHORTING THE AUTHOR
TO BE CHEERFUL, AND TO BANISH CARE.
“Oh ! banish care”-such ever be
The motto of thy revelry !
'Twere long to tell, and vain to hear,
I've seen my bride another's bride,-
But let this pass—I'll whine no more, Nor seek again an eastern shore ; The world befits a busy brain,I'll hie me to its haunts again. But if, in some succeeding year, When Britain's “ May is in the sere,” Thou hear'st of one, whose deepening crimes Suit with the sablest of the times, Of one, whom love nor pity sways, Nor hope of fame, nor good men's praise, One, who in stern ambition's pride, Perchance not blood shall turn aside, One rank'd in some recording page With the worst anarchs of the age, Him wilt thou know—and knowing pause, Nor with the effect forget the cause.