Page images

"In the wild wood of fair Dove dwells

An Outlaw, young and handsome;
A sight of him on Chatsworth bank
Were worth a prince's ransom.

"Now bend your bows, and choose your shafts,"
His string at his touch went sighing;
"The Outlaw comes-now, now at his breast
Let seven broad shafts be flying."

The Outlaw came-with a song he came―
Green was his gallant cleeding;

A horn at his belt, in his hand the bow
That set the roebucks bleeding.

The Outlaw came-with a song he came
O'er a brow more brent and bonny
The pheasant plume ne'er danced and shone,
In a summer morning sunny.

The Outlaw came-at his belt, a blade
Broad, short, and sharp was gleamin';
Free was his steep as one who had ruled
Among knights and lovely women.

See, by his shadow in the stream
He loves to look and linger,
And wave his mantle richly flower'd
By a white and witching finger.

"Now, shall I hit him where yon gay plume Of the Chatsworth pheasant's glancing;

Or shall I smite his shapely limbs

That charm our maidens dancing ?"

"Hold! hold!" a northern forester said, ""Till be told from Trent to Yarrow, How the true-love song of a gentle Outlaw Was stay'd by a churl's arrow."

"It ne'er shall be said," quoth the forester then, "That the song of a red-deer reaver

Could charm the bow that my grandsire bent
On the banks of Guadalquiver."

And a shaft he laid, as he spoke, to the string, When the Outlaw's song came falling

As sweet on his ear, as the wind when it comes
Through the fragrant woodlands calling.

There each man stood, with his good bow bent,
And his shaft pluck'd from the quiver:
While thus then sung that gallant Outlaw,
Till rung both rock and river:

"Oh! bonny Chatsworth, and fair Chatsworth,
Thy bucks go merrily bounding;
Aneath your green oaks, as the herds flew past,
How oft have my shafts been sounding!

"It is sweet to meet with the one we love,
When the night is nigh the hoarest;
It is sweet to bend the bow as she bids,
On the proud prey of the forest.

"One fair dame loves the cittern's sound,
When the words of love are winging;


my fair one's music 's the Outlaw's horn, And his bow-string sharply singing.

"She waves her hand-her lily-white hand,
"Tis a spell to each who sees her;
One glance of her eye-and I snatch my bow,
And let fly my arrows to please her.

"I bring the lark from the morning cloud,
When its song is at the sweetest;
I stay the deer upon Chatsworth lea,
When its flight is at the fleetest.

"There's magic in the wave of her hand,
And her dark eye rains those glances,
Which fill the best and the wisest hearts
With love's sweet influences.

"Her locks are brown-bright berry brown,
O'er her temples white descending;
And her neck is like the neck of the swan,
As her stately way she's wending.

"How I have won my way to her heart

"Tis past all men's discernin';

For she is lofty, and I am low,
My lovely Julia Vernon.”

He turned him right and round about,

With a step both long and lordly;
When he was aware of those foresters bold,
And he bore him wondrous proudly.

"Good morrow, good fellows!" all fearless he said,

"Was your supper spread so sparely ;

Or is it to feast some sweet young dame,
That you bend your bows so early?

"I feast me now on the ptarmigan,

And then I taste the pheasant;

And my supper is of the Chatsworth fawn,
Which my love dresses pleasant.

"But to-morrow I feast on yon bonny roebuck; 'Tis time I stay'd his bounding;"

He twang'd his string-like the swallow it sung, All shrilly and sharply sounding.

"By my grandsire's bow," said a forester then,


"By my shafts which fly so yarely,

And by all the skill of my strong right hand,
Good Outlaw, thou lordst it rarely.

"Seest thou yon tree, yon lonely tree,
Whose bough the Derwent's laving ?-
Upon its top, thou gallant Outlaw,
Thou'lt be hung to feed the raven.

"So short as the time this sharp shaft flies,
And strikes yon golden pheasant-
There-thy time is meted, so bid farewell
To these greenwoods wild and pleasant."

The Outlaw laugh'd; "Good fellow," he said, "My sword's too sure a servant

To suffer that tree to bear such fruit

While it stands upon the Derwent.

"She would scorn my might, my own true love,
And the mother would weep that bore me,
If I stay'd my step for such strength as thine,
Or seven such churls before me.

"I have made my way with this little brown sword,
Where the war-steeds rush'd the throngest ;
I have saved my breast with this little brown sword,
When the strife was at the strongest.

"It guarded me well in bonny Scotland,

When the Scots and Graemes fought fervent; And the steel that saved me by gentle Nith, May do the same by Derwent."

"Fair fall thee, Outlaw, for that word!
Oh! Nith, thou gentle river,
When a bairn, I flew along thy banks,
As an arrow from the quiver.

"The roebucks run upon thy braes
Without a watch or warden;

And the tongue that calls thee a gentle stream
Is dear to Geordie Gordon."


The Outlaw smiled, " "Tis a soldier's saye
That the Gordons, blythe and ready,
Ne'er stoop'd the plumes of their basnets bright
Save to a lovesome lady."

"Now by Saint Allen, the forester said,
And the Saint who slew the dragon;
And by this hand that wields the brand,
As wight as it tooms the flagon;

"It shall never be told of the Gordon's name,
Of a name so high and lordly,

That I took a gallant Outlaw in the toil,
And hanged him base and cowardly.

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »