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crowding into little groves and bowers, with other circumstances peculiar to the districts I allude to, render them fit for pasturage, and favorable to romantic leisure and tender passions. Several of the old Scotch songs take their names from the rivulets, villages, and hills adjoining to the Tweed near Melrose; a region distinguished by many charming varieties of rural scenery, and which, whether we consider the face of the country, or the genius of the people, may properly enough be termed the Arcadia of Scotland. And all these songs are sweetly and powerfully expressive of love and tenderness, and other emotions suited to the tranquillity of pastoral life.
TANNAHILL. (ROBERT TANNAHILL, one of the most popular of the song writers of Scotland, since Burns, was a native of Paisley, born in 1774. He was bred a weaver; and his favorite pursuit was to recover old and neglected airs, to which he adapted new words. “I would I were a weaver," says Falstaff; “I could sing all manner of songs.” He continued to work, with some ex. ceptions, in his native town; where, at the beginning of this century, he made an acquaintance with Robert Archibald Smith, a musical composer, who set some of his songs to original music, and adapted others to old airs. In 1807 Tannahill collected his songs into a volume, which was decidedly successful. The higher success, which he more prized, was to find his songs universally known and sung amongst all classes. But the poet was the victim of a morbid melancholy which embittered his existence. His means were above his wants ; he had no special unhappiness. But he died, as Ophelia died, "where a willow grows aslant a brook,”—perhaps " chanting snatches of old tunes." This event occurred in 1810, near Paisley.)
JESSIE, THE Flow'r o' DUMBLANE.
The sun has gane down o'er the lofty Benlomond,
And left the red clouds to preside o'er the scene, While lanely I stray in the calm simmer gloamin'
To muse on sweet Jessie, the flow'r o' Dumblane.
How sweet is the brier, wi' its saft faulding blossom,
And sweet is the birk, wi' its mantle o' green; Yet sweeter and fairer, and dear to this bosom,
Is lovely young Jessie, the flow'r o' Dumblane. She 's modest as ony, and blithe as she 's bonny ;
For guileless simplicity marks her its ain; And far be the villain, divested of feeling,
Wha'd blight in its bloom the sweet flow'r o' Dumblane. Sing on, thou sweet mavis, thy hymn to the e'ening,
Thou 'rt dear to the echoes of Calderwood glen; Sae dear to this bosom, sae artless and winning,
Is charming young Jessie, the flow'r o' Dumblane. How lost were my days 'till I met wi' my Jessie,
The sports o' the city seem'd foolish and vain, I ne'er saw a nymph I would ca' my dear lassie,
'Till charm'd with sweet Jessie, the flow'r o' Dumblane. Though mine were the station o' loftiest grandeur,
Amidst its profusion I'd languish in pain ;
If wanting sweet Jessie, the flow'r o' Dumblane.
THE BRAES O' GLENIFFER.
Keen blaws the wind o'er the Braes o' Gleniffer,
The auld castle's turrets are cover'd wi' snaw; How chang'd frae the time when I met wi'
lover Amang the broom bushes by Stanley green shaw: The wild flow'rs o'simmer were spread a' sae bonnie,
The mavis sang sweet frae the green birken tree: But far to the camp they hae march'd my dear Johnnie,
And now it is winter wi' nature and me.
Then ilk thing around us was blithesome and cheery,
Then ilk thing around us was bonny and braw; Now naething is heard but the wind whistling dreary,
And naething is seen but the wide-spreading snaw.
The trees are a' bare, and the birds mute and dowie,
They shake the cauld drifts from their wings as they flee, And chirp out their plaints, seeming wae for my Johnnie,
'Tis winter wi' them, and 'tis winter wi' me.
Yon cauld sleety cloud skiffs alang the bleak mountain,
And shakes the dark firs on the stey rocky brae, While down the deep glen bawls the snaw-flooded fountain,
That murmur'd sae sweet to my laddie and me. 'Tis no its loud roar on the wintry wind swellin',
'Tis no the cauld blast brings the tears i'my e'e, For, O gin I saw my bonnie Scotch callan,
The dark days o' winter were simmer to me!
THE MIDGES DANCE ABOON THE BURN.
The midges dance aboon the burn,
The dews begin to fa',
Set up their e'ening ca'.
Rings through the briery shaw,
Around the castle wa'.
Beneath the golden gloamin' sky,
The mavis mends her lay,
To charm the ling'ring day :
Their little nestlings torn,
Gaes jinking through the thorn.
The roses fauld their silken leaves,
The foxglove shuts its bell,
Spread fragrance through the dell.
Let others crowd the giddy court
Of mirth and revelry,
Are dearer far to me.
Au! SHEELAH, THOU 'RT MY DARLING.
Ah! Sheelah, thou 'rt my darling,
The golden image of my beart; How cheerless seems this morning,
It brings the hour when we must part; Though doom'd to cross the ocean,
And face the proud insulting foe, Thou hast my soul's devotion,
My heart is thine where'er I go ; Ah! Sheelah, thou 'rt my darling,
My heart is thine where'er I go.
the billow, And angry tempests round me blow, Let not the gloomy willow
O’ershade thy lovely lily brow : But mind the seaman's story,
Sweet William and his charming Sue; I'll soon return with glory,
And, like sweet William, wed thee too : Ah! Sheelah, thou 'rt my darling,
My heart is thine where'er I go.
Think on our days of pleasure,
While wandering by the Shannon side, When summer days give leisure
To stray amidst their flow'ry pride : And while thy faithful lover
Is far upon the stormy main, Think, when the wars are over,
Those golden days shall come again.
Farewell, ye lofty mountains,
Your flow'ry wilds we wont to rove;
The dear retreats of mutual love.
O! Sheelah, to thy vows be true!
One fond embrace, and then adieu;
One fond embrace, and then adieu.
313.-ART AND NATURE,
BYRON [The poets, in general, are amongst the best of the prose writers. In these volumes we have given many examples of the prose of poets. We add one of Byron. Before the close of this little work, we shall give one specimen of Byron's poetry, with a brief notice of his life and writings. The following extract is from his controversial pamphlet on the merits of Popema controversy in which some nonsense was said on both sides, but which had the merit of being less dull than most disputes, literary or political.]
Mr. Bowles asserts that Campbell's Ship of the Line"* derives all its poetry, not from “art," but from “nature.”
“ Take *"Those who have ever witnessed the spectacle of the launching of a ship of the line, will perhaps forgive me for adding this to the examples of the sublime objects of artificial life. Of that spectacle I can never forget the impression, and of having witnessed it reflected from the faces of ten thousand spectators. They seem yet before me. I sympathize with their deep and silent exportation, and with their final burst of enthusiasm. It was not a vulgar joy, but an affecting national solemnity. When the vast bulwark sprang from her cradle, the calm water on which she swung majestically round gave the imagination a contrast of the stormy element on which she was soon to ride. All the days of battle and the nights of danger which she had to encounter, all the ends of the earth which she had to visit, and all that she had to do and to suffer for her country, rose in awful presentiment before the mind; and when the heart gave her a benediction, it was like one pronounced on a living being.”—CAMPBELL’s Specimens of British Poetry vol. i. p. 265.