Selected Poetry

The Woodland, By the Late Robert Nicoll.

The woodland wild ! – wilt thou go with me, Where the squirrel is perchen on his oaken tree,– where the yellow fern doth wave its head,– Where the hands of night the dew hath laid,– And the winds, that wander to and fro, Kiss the brown leaflets as they go,– Where the morning sun peeps in, so mild, To the dark green nooks of the woodland wild ? The woodland wild ! –where the dun deer roam, And the song-birds build them a happy home,– Where the grass is green, and the turf so sweet, Seems shorn by the tread of fairy feet,– Where the daylight comes, so richly dim, And the cushat’s coo seems a hermit’s hymn, The care-worn heart might be self-beguiled To forget its woes in the woodland wild ! The woodland wild ! –where the hazels grow, Where the ladye-broom doth its branches throw,– Where the God-built sky is in patches seen Through the roof of leaves. There aye hath been The home of those wild and fairy flowers That gladden all Nature’s life and ours, As they bloom by the stream,–that prattling child, That wanders along through the woodland wild ! The woodland wild !–If thy heart be pure, If thy faith in the right be firm and sure, Go, wander the woodlands parth within, And the love of Nature woo and win; Drink of the cup of beauty there, Where the breath of Omnipotence scents the air; For the Father of beauty in love hath smiled On the sweet green bowers of the woodland wild The woodlan wild !–long, long ago, I have buried myself its leaves below, And dreamed of its beauteous tenants all,– ‘Tis the linnet’s home and fairies’ hall! ‘Tis the spot where the wondrous monk of old, His hermitage reared in the pleasant wold; By its door a crystal springlet boiled, For the pilgrim to drink, in the woodlan wild! The woodland wild !–what pleasant stories Make sunlight over its olden glories,– Of Robin Hood and his bowmen bold, The raids they made, and the tales they told ! In winter, in spring, and in summer time, The glorious forests are aye in prime ; For glad thoughts forever are round them piled, Those grassy glades in the woodland wild! The woodland wild!–make haste.–make haste! Away with me, and its gladness taste; We will wander beside each gushing stream, Where flowers in the water reflected gleam; We will follow its paths and pluck its flowers, And lie on its grass in the evening hours, Till the dying sunlight, soft and mild, Warns us away from the woodland wild ! Tail’s Magazine

Song of the Emigrants to New Zealand Steer, helmsman, till you steer our way By stars beyond the line– We go to found a realm–one day– Like England’s self to shine. Chorus. Cheer up ! Cheer up! our course we’ll keep With dauntless heart and hand, And when we’ve ploughed the stormy deep We’ll plough a smiling land. A land whose beauties importune The Briton to its bowers, To sow but plenty’s seeds and prune Luxuriant fruits and flowers, Chorus –Cheer up ! cheer up ! There tracts uncheered[?] by human words, Seclusion’s wildest holds, Shall hear the lowing of our herds, The tinkling of our folds, Chorus –Cheer up ! cheer up ! Like rubies set in gold shall blush Our vineyards girt with corn, And wine, and oil, and gladness gush From Amalthea’s horn. Chorus –Cheer up ! cheer up ! Britannia’s pride is in our hearts, Her blood is in our veins, We’ll girdle earth with British arts, Like Ariel’s magic chains, Chorus. Cheer up ! cheer up ! our course we’ll keep With dauntless heart and hand, And when we’ve ploughed the stormy deep We’ll plough a smiling land. T. Campbell London, 16th August, 1839.

Citation: Scotsman (Edinburgh, United Kingdom), 11 September 1839, available at the Scissors and Paste Database,