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.
 
Introductory
Deirdrè’s Farewell to Alba
From the Gaelic
 
        
Anonymous Translation
  Deirdrè, wife of Naise, the son of Usna, returning with her husband to Emania in Erin, laments for Alba (Scotland) her adopted country.

ALAS! and alas, my sorrow!
  The pain that hath no relief,
Alas! for the dreadful morrow
  To dawn on our day of grief!—
O land in the orient glowing,        5
  The last of thy smiles hath shone
On us, for Fate’s wind is blowing,
  And the wave of our doom speeds on,
And a blight from the westward cometh, and the bloom of our life is gone!
 
O land of the morn-bright mountains        10
  With the purple moors at their feet,
Of the clear leaf-mirroring fountains
  And rivers of waters sweet;
Of the fragrant wood-bowers twining,
  And the cataract’s sounding roar,        15
Of the lakes in their splendor shining,
  With the pine-woods whispering o’er,—
Ah! naught but my lord, my lover, could lure me from thy green shore!
 
Sweet is it in Daro’s valley
  To list to the falling rill,        20
To the breeze in the woodland alley
  And the goshawk’s note from the hill,
To the light-winged swallow pursuing
  His mate with a joyous cry,
To the cuckoo’s voice and the cooing        25
  Of doves in the pine-tops high,
And the throstle’s song in the thicket, and the lark’s from the morning sky!
 
Under the summer arbor
  By the fresh sea-breezes fanned,
Where the waters of Drayno’s harbor        30
  Sing over silver sand,
Happy from morn till even
  We ’ve watched the seabirds play,
And the ocean meeting the heaven
  In the distance far away,        35
And the gleam of the white-sailed galleys, and the flash of the sunlit spray!
 
In Masan the green, the blooming,
  How happy our days did pass;
Many its flowers perfuming,
  And studding like gems the grass:        40
There the Foxglove purpled the hollow,
  And the Iris flaunted its gold,
And the flower that waits for the swallow,
  Its dainty bloom to unfold,
With the Hyacinth blue and the Primrose, laught in the breezy wold.        45
 
In Eta of sunny weather
  ’Neath our happy home-porch hid,
On venison sweet from the heather
  And flesh of the mountain kid,
On game from the forest cover        50
  And fish from the crystal stream,
We feasted till eve was over,
  And the moon with her silver gleam
Soared o’er the dusky pine-woods out from the realm of dream.
 
O land of the East! O Giver        55
  Of freedom from sore distress!
O land where no cloud came ever
  To darken our happiness!
O home of pleasure and promise
  And peace unto mine and me,        60
When I see thy shores fade from us,
  I sigh in my misery,
And send my voice o’er the waters crying farewell to thee!
 
 
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