« ForrigeFortsæt »
LAY OF THE LAST MINSTREL.
AND said I that my limbs were old;
And that my kindly fire was fled,
And that I might not sing of love?—
So foul, so false, a recreant prove!
How could I name love's very name,
heart to notes of flame!
In peace, Love tunes the shepherd's reed;
In war, he mounts the warrior's steed;
In halls, in gay attire is seen;
In hamlets, dances on the green.
Love rules the court, the camp, the grove,
And men below, and saints above;
For love is heaven, and heaven is love.
So thought Lord Cranstoun, as I ween,
While, pondering deep the tender scene,
And scarce his helmet could he don,
When downward from the shady hill
A stately knight came pricking on.
That warrior's steed, so dapple-gray,
Was dark with sweat, and splashed with clay;
His armour red with many a stain:
He seemed in such a weary plight,
As if he had ridden the live-long night;
For it was William of Deloraine.
But no whit weary
did he seem,
When, dancing in the sunny beam,
He marked the crane on the Baron's crest;
For his ready spear was in his rest.
Few were the words, and stern and high,
That marked the foemen's feudal hate;
For question fierce, and proud reply,
Gave signal soon of dire debate.
In rapid round the Baron bent;
He sighed a sigh, and prayed a prayer :
The prayer was to his patron saint,
The sigh was to his ladye fair.
Stout Deloraine nor sighed, nor prayed,
Nor saint, nor ladye, called to aid;
But he stooped his head, and couched his spear,
And spurred his steed to full career.
The meeting of these champions proud
Seemed like the bursting thunder-cloud.
Stern was the dint the Borderer lent!
The stately Baron backwards bent;
Bent backwards to his horse's tail,
And his plumes went scattering on the gale;
The tough ash spear, so stout and true,
Into a thousand flinders flew.
But Cranstoun's lance, of more avail,
Pierced through, like silk, the Borderer's mail;