« PreviousContinue »
his Eyes. His Stature like the Oak of Morven. He moved in the Lightning of Steel.
Our Warriors fell before him, like the Field before the Reapers. FingaVs three Sons he bound. He plunged his Sword into the Fair-one's Breast. She fell as a Wreath of Snow before the Sun in Spring. Her Bosom heaved in Death; her Soul came forth in Blood.
Ofcur my Son came down; the mighty in Battle descended. His Armour rattled as Thunder; and the Lightning of his Eyes was terrible. There, was the clashing of Swords; there, was the Voice of Steel. They struck and theythurst; they digged for Death with their Swords. But Death was distant far, and delayed to come. The Sun began to decline; and the Cow-herd thought of Home. Then Ofcur's keen Steel found the Heart of Ullin. He fell like a Mountain-Oak covered over with glistering Frost: He shone like a Rock on the Plain.—Here the Daughter of Beauty lieth ; and here the bravest of Men. Here one Day ended the Fair and the Valiant. Here rest the Pursuer and the Pursued.
Son of Alpin! the Woes of the Aged are many. Their Tears are for the past. This raised my Sorrow, Warrior; Memory awaked my Grief. Ofcur my Son was Brave; but Ofcur is know no more. Thou hast heard my Grief, O Son of Alpin; forgive the Tears of the aged.
WH Y openest thou afresh the Spring of my Grief, O Son of Alpin, inquiring how Os, cur fell ? My Eyes are blind with Tears; but Memory beams on my Heart. How can I relate the mournful Death of the Head of the People! Prince of the Warriors, Oscur, my Son, shall I see thee no more!
He fell as the Moon in a Storm; as the Sun from the Midst of his Course, when Clouds rife from the Waste of the Waves, when the Blackness of the Storm inwraps the Rocks of Ardannider, I like an ancient Oak on Morvan, I moulder alone in my Place. The Blast hath lopped my Branches away; and I tremble at the Wings of the North. Prince of the Warriors, Oscur, my Son ! shall I fee thee no more!
Dermid and Oscur were one: They, reaped the, Battle together. Their Friendship was strong as their Steel; and Death walked between them to the Field. They came on the Foe like two Rocks falling from the Brows of Ardven. Their Swords were stained with the Blood of the Valiant: Warriors fainte4' at theirNames. Who was a Match for Oscur; but ftermid f and who.fpr Dermid, but Oscur?
They killed mighty Dargo in the Field; Dargt befpre inyincible. His Daughter was fair as the . . . Morn j Morn; Mild as the Beam of Night. Her Eyes, like two Stars in a Shower: Her Breath, the Gale of Spring: Her Breasts, as the new-fallen Snow 'floating on the^moving Heath. The Warriors faw her, and loved; Their Souls were sixed on the Maid. Each loved her, as his Fame; each must possess her or die. But her Soul was sixed on Oscur; my Son was the Youth of her Love. She forgot the Blood of her Father; and loved the Hand that flew him. .
Son of Oscian, faid Dermid, I love; O Oscur, I love this Maid. But her Soul cleaveth untp thee; and nothing can heal Dermid. Here pierce this Bosom, Oscur; relieve me, my Friend, with ihy Sword.
My Sword, Son of Morney, dall never be stained with the Blood of Dermid.
Who then is worthy to flay me, O Oscur, Son of Oscian? Let not my Life pass ?way unknown. Let none but Oscur flay me. Send me with Honour to the Grave, and let my Death be renowned.
Dermid, make use of thy Sword ; Son of Morney, weild thy Steel. Would that I fell with thee ! that my . Death came from the Hand of Dermid I
They fought by the Brook of the Mountain, by the Streams of Branno. Blood tinged ,the silvery Stream, and curdled round the mofly Stones. Dermid the Graceful sell; fell, and smiled in Death.
And fallest thou, Son of Morney; fallest thou by Oscur's Hand ! Dermid, invincible in War, thus do I fee thee fall !—He went, and returned to the Maid whom he loved? returned, but she perceived his Grief.
Why that Gloom, Son of Ofcian t What shades thy mighty Soul.
Though once renowned for the Bow, O Maid, I have lost my Fame. Fixed on a Tree by the Brook of the Hill, is the Shield of Gormer the Brave, whom in Battle I flew. 1 have wasted the Day in vain, nor could my Arrow pierce it.
Let me try, Son of Ofcian, the Skill of Dargo's Daughter. My Hands were taught the Bow: My Father delighted in my Skill.
She went. He stood behind the Shield. Her Arrow flew and pierced his Breast [/>].
~" Blessed be that Hand of Snow; and blessed thy Bow of Yew! I fall resolved on Death: And who but the Daughter of Dargo was worthy to flay me; Lay me in the Earth, my Fair-one; lay me by the Side of Dermid.
[p] Nothing was held by the ancient Highlanders more essential to their Glery, than to die by the Hand of some Person worthy or renowned. This was the Occasion of Oscar's contriving to be slain by his Mistress, now that he was weary of Life. In those early Times, Suicide was utterly unknown amongthatPeople, and no Traces of it are found in the old Poetry. Whence theTranslator fuspects the Account that follows of the Daughter of Dat'go killing herself, to be the Interpolation of some later Bard.
O/cur / Oscur! I have the Blood, the Soul of the mighty Dargo. Well pleased I can meet Death. My Sorrow
I can end thus. She pierced her white Bosom
with Steel. She fell; she trembled ; and dyed.
By the Brook of the Hill their Graves are laid; a Birch's unequal Shade covers their Tomb. Often Ob their green earthen Tombs the branchy Sons of the Mountains feed, when Mid-day is all in Flames, and Silence is over the Hills.
BY the Side of a Rock on the Hill, beneath the aged Trees, old Oscian fat on the Moss 5 the last of the Race of Fingal. Sightless are his aged Eyes; his Beard is waving in the Wind. Dull through the leafless Trees he heard the Voice of the North. Sorrow revived in his Soul: He began, and lamented the Dead.
How hast thou fallen like an Oak, with all thy Branches round thee! Where is Fingal the King? Where is Oscur my Son? Where are all my Race? Alas! in the Earth they lie. I feel their Tomb with my Hands. I hear the River below murmuring hoarsely over the Stones. What dost thou, O River, to me ? Thou bringest back the Memory of the past.
The Race of Fingal stood on thy Banks, like a Wood in a fertile Soil. Keen were their Spears of £teel, Hardy was he who dared to encounter their