The Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, by Walter Scott

Kempion.

—“Cum heir, cum heir, ye freely feed,

And lay your head low on my knee;

The heaviest weird I will you read,

That ever was read to gaye ladye.

“O meikle dolour sall ye dree,

And aye the salt seas o'er ye'se swim;

And far mair dolour sall ye dree

On Estmere crags, when ye them climb.

“I weird ye to a fiery beast,

And relieved sall ye never be,

Till Kempion, the kingis son,

Cum to the crag, and thrice kiss thee.”—

O meikle dolour did she dree,

And aye the salt seas o'er she swam;

And far mair dolour did she dree

On Estmere crags, e'er she them clamb.

And aye she cried for Kempion,

Gin he would but cum to her hand;

Now word has gane to Kempion,

That sicken a beast was in his land.

—“Now, by my sooth,” said Kempion,

“This fiery beast I'll gang and see.”—

—“And, by my sooth,” said Segramour,

“My ae brother, I'll gang wi' thee.”—

Then bigged hae they a bonny boat,

And they hae set her to the sea;

But a mile before they reached the shore,

Around them she gar'd the red fire flee.

—“O Segramour, keep the boat afloat,

And let her na the land o'er near;

For this wicked beast will sure gae mad,

And set fire to a' the land and mair.”—

Syne has he bent an arblast bow,

And aim'd an arrow at her head;

And swore if she didna quit the land,

Wi' that same shaft to shoot her dead.

—“O out o' my stythe I winna rise,

And it is not for the awe o' thee,

Till Kempion, the kingis son,

Cum to the crag, and thrice kiss me.”

He has louted him o'er the dizzy crag,

And gien the monster kisses ane:

Awa she gaed and again she cam,

The fieryest beast that ever was seen.

—“O out o' my stythe I winna rise,

And not for a' thy bow nor thee,

Till Kempion, the kingis son,

Cum to the crag, and thrice kiss me.”—

He's louted him o'er the Estmere crags,

And he has gien her kisses twa:

Awa she gaed and again she cam,

The fieryest beast that ever you saw.

—“O out of my den I winna rise,

Nor flee it for the feir o' thee;

Till Kempion, that courteous knight,

Cum to the crag, and thrice kiss me.”—

He's louted him o'er the lofty craig,

And he has gien her kisses three:

Awa she gaed and again she cam,

The loveliest ladye e'er could be!

—“And by my sooth,” says Kempion,

“My ain true love, (for this is she:)

They surely had a heart o' stane,

Could put thee to such misery.

“O was it warwolf in the wood,

Or was it mermaid in the sea?

Or was it man, or vile woman,

My ain true love, that mishaped thee?”—

—“It was na warwolf in the wood,

Nor was it mermaid in the sea;

But it was my wicked step-mother,

And wae and weary may she be!”—

—“O a heavier weird shall light her on,

Than ever fell on vile woman;

Her hair shall grow rough, and her teeth grow lang,

And on her four feet shall she gang.

“None shall take pity her upon;

In Wormeswood she aye shall won;

And relieved shall she never be,

Till St Mungo come over the sea.”—

And sighing said that weary wight,

—“I doubt that day I'll never see!”—

http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/s/scott/walter/minstrelsy-of-the-scottish-border/chapter56.html

Last updated Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at 22:29