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New Collected Rhymes   By: (1844-1912)

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New Collected Rhymes

by Andrew Lang


Preface In Augustinum Dobson Loyal Lyrics How the Maid Marched from Blois Lone Places of the Deer An Old Song Jacobite "Auld Lang Syne" The Prince's Birthday The Tenth of June, 1715 White Rose Day Red and White Roses The Bonnie Banks o' Loch Lomond Kenmure Culloden The Last of the Leal Jeanne d'Arc Cricket Rhymes To Helen Ballade of Dead Cricketers Brahma Critical of Life, Art, and Literature Gainsborough Ghosts A Remonstrance with the Fair Rhyme of Rhymes Rhyme of Oxford Cockney Rhymes Rococo The Food of Fiction "A Highly Valuable Chain of Thoughts" Matrimony Piscatori Piscator The Contented Angler Off my Game The Property of a Gentleman who has Given up Collecting The Ballade of the Subconscious Self Ballade of the Optimist Zimbabwe Love's Cryptogram Tusitala Disdainful Diaphenia Tall Salmacis Jubilee Poems What Francesco said of the Jubilee The Poet and the Jubilee On any Beach Ode of Jubilee Jubilee before Revolution Folk Songs French Peasant Songs Ballads The Young Ruthven The Queen o' Spain and the Bauld McLean Keith of Craigentolly


This poor little flutter of rhymes would not have been let down the wind: the project would have been abandoned but for the too flattering encouragement of a responsible friend. I trust that he may not "live to rue the day," like Keith of Craigentolly in the ballad.

The "Loyal Lyrics" on Charles and James and the White Rose must not be understood as implying a rebellious desire for the subversion of the present illustrious dynasty.

"These are but symbols that I sing, These names of Prince, and rose, and King; Types of things dear that do not die, But reign in loyal memory. ACROSS THE WATER surely they Abide their twenty ninth of May; And we shall hail their happy reign, When Life comes to his own again,"

over the water that divides us from the voices and faces of our desires and dreams.

Of the ballads, The Young Ruthven and The Queen of Spain were written in competition with the street minstrels of the close of the sixteenth century. The legend on which The Young Ruthven is based is well known; The Queen of Spain is the story of the Florencia, a ship of the Spanish Armada, wrecked in Tobermory Bay, as it was told to me by a mariner in the Sound of Mull. In Keith of Craigentolly the family and territorial names of the hero or villain are purposely altered, so as to avoid injuring susceptibilities and arousing unavailing regrets.


Dear Poet, now turned out to grass (Like him who reigned in Babylon), Forget the seasons overlaid By business and the Board of Trade: And sing of old world lad and lass As in the summers that are gone.

Back to the golden prime of Anne! When you ambassador had been, And brought o'er sea the King again, Beatrix Esmond in his train, Ah, happy bard to hold her fan, And happy land with such a Queen!

We live too early, or too late, You should have shared the pint of Pope, And taught, well pleased, the shining shell To murmur of the fair Lepel, And changed the stars of St. John's fate To some more happy horoscope.

By duchesses with roses crowned, And fed with chicken and champagne, Urbane and witty, and too wary To risk the feud of Lady Mary, You should have walked the courtly ground Of times that cannot come again.

Bring back these years in verse or prose, (I very much prefer your verse!) As on some Twenty Ninth of May Restore the splendour and the sway, Forget the sins, the wars, the woes The joys alone must you rehearse.

Forget the dunces (there is none So stupid as to snarl at YOU); So may your years with pen and book Run pleasant as an English brook Through meadows floral in the sun, And shadows fragrant of the dew.

And thus at ending of your span As all must end the world shall say, "His best he gave: he left us not A line that saints could wish to blot, For he was blameless, though a man, And though the poet, he was gay!"


(Supposed to be narrated by James Power, or Polwarth, her Scottish banner painter... Continue reading book >>

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