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.
 
Craig Elachie
Craig Elachie
Eliza A. H. Ogilvy (b. 1822)
 
BLUE are the hills above the Spey,
The rocks are red that line his way;
Green is the strath his waters lave,
And fresh the turf upon the grave
Where sleep my sire and sisters three,        5
Where none are left to mourn for me:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
The roofs that sheltered me and mine
Hold strangers of a Sassenach line;
Our hamlet thresholds ne’er can show        10
The friendly forms of long ago;
The rooks upon the old yew-tree
Would e’en have stranger notes to me:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
The cattle feeding on the hills,        15
We tended once o’er moors and rills,
Like us have gone; the silly sheep
Now fleck the brown sides of the steep,
And southern eyes their watchers be,
And Gael and Sassenach ne’er agree:        20
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
Where are the elders of our glen,
Wise arbiters for meaner men?
Where are the sportsmen, keen of eye,
Who tracked the roe against the sky;        25
The quick of hand, of spirit free?
Passed, like a harper’s melody:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
Where are the maidens of our vale,
Those fair, frank daughters of the Gael?        30
Changed are they all, and changed the wife,
Who dared for love the Indian’s life;
The little child she bore to me
Sunk in the vast Atlantic sea:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!        35
 
Bare are the moors of broad Strathspey,
Shaggy the western forests gray;
Wild is the corri’s autumn roar,
Wilder the floods of this far shore;
Dark are the crags of rushing Dee,        40
Darker the shades of Tennessee:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
Great rock, by which the Grant hath sworn,
Since first amid the mountains born;
Great rock, whose sterile granite heart        45
Knows not, like us, misfortune’s smart,
The river sporting at thy knee,
On thy stern brow no change can see:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
Stand fast on thine own Scottish ground,        50
By Scottish mountains flanked around,
Though we, uprooted, cast away
From the warm bosom of Strathspey,
Flung pining by this western sea,
The exile’s hopeless lot must dree:        55
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
Yet strong as thou the Grant shall rise,
Cleft from his clansmen’s sympathies;
In these grim wastes new homes we ’ll rear,
New scenes shall wear old names so dear;        60
And while our axes fell the tree,
Resound old Scotia’s minstrelsy:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!
 
Here can no treacherous chief betray
For sordid gain our new Strathspey;        65
No fearful king, no statesmen pale,
Wrench the strong claymore from the Gael.
With armed wrist and kilted knee,
No prairie Indian half so free:
Stand fast, stand fast, Craig Elachie!        70
 
 
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