Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Scotland
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Scotland: Vols. VI–VIII.  1876–79.
 
Yarrow
The Dowie Dens of Yarrow
Henry S. Riddell (1798–1870)
 
O SISTERS, there are midnight dreams
  That pass not with the morning,
Then ask not why my reason swims
  In a brain so wildly burning.
And ask not why I fancy how        5
  You wee bird sings wi’ sorrow,
That bluid lies mingled with the dew,
  In the dowie dens o’ Yarrow.
 
My dream’s wild light was not of night,
  Nor of the dulefu’ morning;        10
Thrice on the stream was seen the gleam
  That seemed his sprite returning;
For sword-girt men came down the glen
  An hour before the morrow,
And pierced the heart aye true to mine,        15
  In the dowie dens o’ Yarrow.
 
O, there are red red drops o’ dew
  Upon the wild-flower’s blossom,
But they could na cool my burning brow,
  And shall not stain my bosom.        20
But from the clouds o’ yon dark sky
  A cold cold shroud I ’ll borrow,
And long and deep shall be my sleep
  In the dowie dens o’ Yarrow.
 
Let my form the bluid-dyed floweret press        25
  By the heart o’ him that lo’ed me,
And I ’ll steal frae his lips a long long kiss
  In the bower where aft he wooed me.
For my arms shall fold and my tresses shield
  The form of my death-cold marrow,        30
When the breeze shall bring the raven’s wing
  O’er the dowie dens o’ Yarrow.
 
 
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