Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Scotland
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Scotland: Vols. VI–VIII.  1876–79.
Cayla, the River
The River Cayla
Thomas Pringle (1789–1834)
(From The Autumnal Excursion)
  Cayla, or Cayle-Water, is one of the branches of the river Teviot.

CAYLA! like voice of years gone by,
I hear thy mountain melody:
It comes with long-forgotten dreams
Once cherished by thy wizard streams;
And sings of school-boy rambles free,        5
And heart-felt young hilarity!
I see the mouldering turrets hoar
Dim-gleaming on thy woodland shore,
Where oft, afar from vulgar eye,
I loved at summer tide to lie;        10
Abandoned to the witching sway
Of some old bard’s heroic lay;
Or poring o’er the immortal story
Of Roman and of Grecian glory.
*        *        *        *        *
  But chief, when summer twilight mild        15
Drew her dim curtain o’er the wild,
I loved beside that ruin gray
To watch the dying gleam of day.
And though, perchance, with secret dread,
I heard the bat flit round my head,        20
While winds that waved the long lank grass
With sound unearthly seemed to pass,
Yet with a pleasing horror fell
Upon my heart the thrilling spell;
For all that met the eye or ear        25
Was still so pure and peaceful here,
I deemed no evil might intrude
Within the saintly solitude.
Still vivid memory can recall
The figure of each shattered wall;        30
The aged trees, all hoar with moss,
Low-bending o’er the circling fosse;
The rushing of the mountain flood;
The cushats cooing in the wood;
The rooks that o’er the turrets sail;        35
The lonely curlew’s distant wail;
The flocks that high on Hounam rest;
The glories of the glowing west.
*        *        *        *        *

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