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borne Truthil. Shall I behold the halls of him that slew Selama's chief? No: I will not behold them, spirits of my love !"
Joy rose in the face of Nathos when he heard the white-bosomed maid. “ Daughter of Selama! thou shinest on my soul. Come, with thy thousands, Cairbar! the strength of Nathos is returned. And thou, O aged Usnoth, shalt not hear that thy son has fled. I remember thy words on Etha, when thy sails begun to rise: when I spread them towards Ullin, towards the mossy walls of Tura. “ Thou goest,” he said, “O Nathos, to the king of shields; to Cuchullin, chief of men, who never fled from danger. Let not thine arm be feeble: neither bé thy thoughts of flight; lest the son of Semo say that Etha's race are weak. His words may come to Usnoth, and sadden his soul in the hall. The tear was on his cheek. He gave this shining sword.”
“I came to Tura's bay: but the halls of Tura were silent. I looked around, and there was none to tell of the chief of Dunscaich. I went to the hall of his shells, where the arms of his fathers hung. But the arms were gone, and aged Lamhor" sat in tears. “Whence are the arms of steel?” said the rising Lamhor. “ The light of the spear has long been absent from Tura's dusky walls. Come ye from the rolling sea ? Or from the mournful halls of Temora'.".
“ We come from the sea,” I said, " from Usnoth's rising towers. We are the sons of Slissama' the daughter of car-borne Semo. Where is Tura's chief, son of the silent hall? but why should Nathos ask? for I be. hold thy tears. How did the mighty fall, son of the lonely Tura ?”
“ He fell not,” Lamhor replied, “ like the silent star of night, when it shoots through the darkness and is no more. But he was like a meteor that falls in a distant land; death attends its red course, and itself is the sign
Lamh-mhor, "mighty hand.'
Temora was the royal palace of the supreme kings of Ireland. It is here called mournful, on account of the death of Cormac, who was inurdered there by Cairbar who usurped his throne.
Slis-seamha, soft bosom.' She was the wife of Usnoth, and daughter of Semo, the Chief of the isle of mist.
of wars. Mournful are the banks of Lego, and the roar of streainy Lara! There the hero fell, son of the noble Usnoth.”
“ The hero fell in the midst of slaughter,” I said with a bursting sigh. “ His hand was strong in battle ; and death was behind his sword."
“ We came to Lego's mournful banks. We found his rising tomb. His companions in battle are there : his bards of many songs. Three days we mourned over the hero : on the fourth, I struck the shield of Caithbat. The heroes gathered around with joy, and shook their beamy spears. Corlath was near with his host, the friend of car-borne Cairbar. We came like a stream by night, and his heroes fell. When the people of the vailey rose, they saw their blood by morning's light. But we rolled away like wreaths of mist, to Cormac's echoing hall., Our swords rose to defend the king. But Temora's halls were empty. Cormac had fallen in his youth. The king of Erin was no more.
“ Sadness seized the sons of Ullin, they slowly, gloomily, retired : like clouds that, long having threatened rain, retire behind the bills. The sons of Usnoth moved, in their grief, towards Tura's sounding bay. We passed by Selama, and Cairbar retired like Lano's mist, when it is driven by the winds of the desart.
“ It was then I beheld thee, O maid, like the light of Etha's son. Lovely is that beam, I said, and the crowded sigh of my bosom rose. Thou camest in thy beauty, Dar-thula, to Etha's mournful chief. But the winds have deceived us, daughter of Colla, and the foe is near.”
“ Yes! the foe is near,” said the rustling strength of Althos u, I heard their clanging arms on the coast, and saw the dark wreaths of Erin's standard. Distinct is the voice of Cairbarv, and loud as Cromla's falling stream. He had seen the dark ship on the sea, before the dusky night came down. His people watch on Lena's plain, and lift ten thousand swords.” “ And let them lift ten thousand swords," said Nathos with a smile. “ The sons of car-borne Usnoth will never tremble in danger. Why dost thou roll with all thy foam, thou rolling sea of Ullin? Why do ye rustle, on your dark wings, ye whistling tempests of the sky? Do ye think, ye storms, that ye keep Nathos on the coast? No: his soul detains him, children of the night! Althos! bring my father's arms: thou seest them beaming to the stars. Bring the spear of Semows it stands in the dark-bosomed ship.”
u Althos had just returned from viewing the coast of Lena, whither he had been sent by Nathos, the beginning of the night.
v Cairbar had gathered an army to the coast of Ulster, in order to oppose Fingal who prepared for an expedition into Ireland, to re-establish the house of Cormac on the throne, which Cairhar had usurped. Between the wings of Cairbar's army was the bay of Tura, into which the ships of the sons of Usaoth were driven; so that there vas no possibility of their escaping
He brought the arms. Nathos clothed his limbs in all their shining steel. The stride of the chief is lovely: the joy of his eyes terrible. He looks towards the coming of Cairbar. The wind is rustling in his hair. Dar-thula is silent at his side : her look is fixed on the chief. She strives to hide the rising sigh, and two tears swell in her eyes.
" Althos !” said the chief of Etha, “ I see a cave in that rock. Place Dar-thula there : and let thy arm be strong. Ardan! we meet the foe, and call to battle gloomy Cairbar. O that he came in his sounding steel, to meet the sons of Usnoth. Dar-thula! if thou shalt escape, look not on the falling Nathos. Lift thy sails, O Althos, towards the echoing groves of Etha.
“ Tell to the chief that his son fell with fame; that my sword did not shun the battle. Tell him I fell in the midst of thousands, and let the joy of his grief be great. Daughter of Colla! call the maids to Etha's echoing hall. Let their songs arise for Nathos, when shadowy autumn returns. O that the voice of Conay might be heard in my praise ? then would my spirit rejoice in the midst of my mountain winds." And my voice shall praise thee, Nathos, chief of the
w Semo was grandfather to Nathos by the mother's side. The spear mentioned here was given to l's noth on his marriage, it being the custom then for the father of the lady to give bis ums to his son-in-law. The cerernony used upon these occasions is mentioned in other poems. *** Usnoth,
Ossian, the son of Fingal, is often poetically called the voice of Cona,
woody Etha! The voice of Ossian shall rise in thy praise, son of the generous Usnoth! Why was I not on Lena, when the battle rose ! Then would the sword of Ossian have defended thee, or himself have fallen
We sat, that night, in Selma, round the strength of the shell. The wind was abroad in the oaks, the spirit of the mountain x shrieked. The blast came rustling through the hall, and gently touched my harp. The sound was mournful and low, like the song of the tomb. Fingal heard it first, and the crowded sighs of his bosom rose. “ Some of my heroes are low," said the grey-haired king of Morven. “ I hear the sound of death on the harp of my son. Ossian, touch the sounding string ; bid their sorrow rise ; that their spirits may iy with joy to Morven's woody hills.” I touched the harp before the king, the sound was mournful and low. " Bend forward from your clouds," I said, “ ghosts of my fathers ! bend ; lay by the red terror of your course, and receive the falling chief; whether he comes from a distant land, or rises from the rolling sea. Let his robe of mist be near; his spear that is formed of a cloud. Place an half-distinguished meteor by his side, in the form of the hero's sword. And oh! let his countenance be lovely, that his friends may delight in his presence. Bend from your clouds," I said, " ghosts of my fathers! bend."
Such was my song, in Selma, to the lightly-tremb. livg harp. But Nathos was on Ullin's shore surrounded by the night; he heard the voice of the foe amidst the roar of tumbling waves. Silent he heard their voice, and rested on his spear. Morning rose, with its beams : the sons of Erin appear; like grey rocks, with all their trees, they spread along the coast. Cairbar stood, in the midst, and grimly smiled when he saw the foe. Nathos rushed forward in his strength; nor could Dar-thula stay behind. She came with the hero, lifting her shining spear. And who are these, in their armour, in the pride of youth? Who but the sons of Usnoth; Althos, and dark-haired Ardan.
2 By the spirit of the mountain is meant that deep and melancholy sound which precedes a storm; well known to those who live in a high country.
“ Come," said Nathos, “ come! chief of the high Temora! Let our battle be on the coast for the whitebosomed maid! His people are not with Nathos! they are behind that rolling sea. Why dost thou bring thy thousands against the chief of Etha? Thou didst fly* front him, in battle, when his friends were around him." “ Youth of the heart of pride, shall Erin's king fight with thee? Thy fathers were not among the renowned, nor of the kings of men. Are the arms of foes in their halls? or the shields of other times? Cairbar is renowned in Temora, nor does he fight with little men.”
The tear starts from car-borne Nathos; he turned his eyes to his brothers, their spears flew, at once, and three heroes lay on earth. Then the light of their swords gleamed on high : the ranks of Erin yield ; as a ridge of dark clouds before a blast of wind. Then Cairbar ordered his people; and they drew a thousand bows. A thousand arrow's flew; the sons of Usnorb fell. They fell like three young oaks which stood alone on the hill; the traveller saw the lovely trees, and wondered how they grew so lonely : the blast of the desart came, by night, and laid their green heads low; next day he returned, but they were withered, and the heath was bare.
Dar-thula stood in silent grief, and beheld their fall; no tear is in her eye: but her look is wildly sad. Pale was her cheek; her trembling lips broke short an half. formed word. Her dark hair flew on the wind. But gloomy Cairbar came. " Where is thy lover now; the car-borne chief of Etha? Hast thou beheld the halls of Usnoth? or the dark brown hills of Fingal? my battle has roared on Morven, did not the winds meet Dar-thula. Fingal himself would have been low, and sorrow dwelling in Selma. Her shield fell from Darthula's arm, her breast of snow appeared. It appeared, but it was stained with blood, for an arrow was fixed in her side. She fell on the fallen Nathos, like a • He alludos to the light of Cu.lar from Selama