Knight of Elle (2)

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On yonder hill a castle stands,
With walls and towers bedight;
And yonder lives the Child of Elle,
A young and comely knight.

The Child of Elle to his garden went,
And stood at his garden pale,
When, lo, he saw fair Emmeline’s page
Come tripping down the dale.

The Child of Elle he hied him thence,
I wat he stood na still;
And soon he met fair Emmeline's page
Come climbing up the hill.

Now save thee, save thou little foot-page,
Now come thee safe and free,
Oh tell me how does thy lady gay,
And what may thy tidings be.

My lady she is woe-begone,
The tears they fa’ frae her e’en;
And aye she laments the deadly feud
Between her house and thine.

And here she sends thee a silken scarf
Bedew’d wi’ mony a tear,
And bids thee sometimes think on her
Wha loved thee sae dear.

And here she sends thee a ring of gold,
The last boon thou mayst have,
And bids thee wear it for her sake
When she is in her grave.

For ah her gentle heart is broke,
And in grave soon must she be;
Sith her father hath chose her a new love
And forbade her to think of thee.

Her father hath brought her a carlish knight,
Sir John of the north country,
And within three days she must him wed
Or he vows he will her slay.

Now hie thee back thou little foot page
And greet thy lady frae me,
And tell her that I, her own true love,
Will die or set her free.

Now hie thee back thou little foot page
And let thy fair lady know.
This night will I be at thy bower-window,
Betide me weal or woe.

The boy he tripped, the boy he ran,
He neither stint nor staved,
Until he came to fair Emmeline’s bower,
When kneeling down he said:—

Oh lady I’ve been with thy own true love,
And he greets thee well by me;
This night will he be at thy bower-window
And die or set thee free.

Now day was gone, and night was come,
And all were fast asleep—
All save the Lady Emmeline,
Who sat in her bower to weep.

And soon she heard her true love’s voice
Now whispering at the wall,
Awake, awake, my dear lady
’Tis I thy true love ealls.

Awake, awake, my lady dear.
Come mount this fair palfrey;
This ladder of ropes will let thee down,
I’ll carry thee hence away.

Nay now, now nay, thou gentle knight,
Now nay this may not be,
For aye should I tint my maiden fame
If alone I should wend with thee.

O lady, thou with a knight sae true
Mayst safely wend alone;
To my Lady Mother I will thee bring,
Where marriage shall make us one.

My father he is a baron bold.
Of lynage proud and high;
And what would he say if his daughter
Away with a knight should fly?

For well I wot he ne’er could rest
Nor his meat do him good,
Till he had slain thee, Child of Elle,
And seen thy dear heart’s blood.

O lady wert thou in thy saddle set,
And once without this wall—
I would not care for thy cruel father
Nor the worst that might befall.

Fair Emmeline sighed—fair Emmeline wept,
And aye her heart was woe;
At length he seized her lilly-white hand
And down the ladder her drew.

And thrice he clasp’d her to his breast.
And kissed her tenderly;
The tears that fell from her fair e’en
Ran like the fountains down.

He mounted himself on his steed sae tall,
And her on a fair palfrey,
And swung his bugle round his neck,
And roundly they rode away.

All this beheard her own damsel,
In her bed whereas she lay;
Quoth she, my Lord shall know of this,
So I shall hae gold and fee.

Awake, awake, thou baron bold!
Awake, my noble dame,
Your daughter is fled with the Child of Elle
To do the deed of shame.

The baron he woke—the baron he rose
And ealled his merry men all,
And come thou forth Sir John the knight
Thy lady is carried to thrall.

Fair Emmeline scant had ridden a mile—
A mile forth of the town.
When she was aware of her father’s men
Come galloping o’er the down.

And foremost came the carlish knight.
Sir John of the north country;
Now stop, now stop thou false traitor,
Nor earry that lady away;

For she is come of high lynage
And was of a lady born;
For it ill beseems thee a false churle’s son
To carry her henee to scorn.

Now loud thou liest, Sir John the knight,
Now thou doest lie of me;
A knight me got—and a lady me bore,
So ncver did none by thee.

But light thee down my lady fair.
Light down and hold my steed.
While I and this diseourteous knight
Do try this arduous deed.

Fair Emmeline sighed—fair Emmeline wept,
And aye her heart was woe;
While ’twixt her love and the carlish knight
Past many a baleful blow.

The Child of Elle he fought so well
As his weapon he wav’d amain,
That soon he had slain the earlish knight
And laid him upon the plain.

And now the baron and all his men
Full fast approached nigh;
Ah! what may Lady Emmeline do?
’Twere now no boote to fly.

Her lover he put his horn to his mouth,
And blew baith loud and shrill.
And soon he saw his own merry men
Come riding o’er the hill.

Now hold thy hand thou baron bold,
I pray thee hold thy hand,
Nor ruthless rend two gentle hearts
Fast knit in true love’s band.

Thy daughter I have dearly loved
Full long and many a day,
But with such love as holy Kirk
Hath said we freely may.

O give consent—she may be mine,
And bless a faithful pair,
My lands and livings are not small,
My house and lynage fair.

The baron he stroak’d his dark brown cheek,
And turned his head aside
To wipe away the starting tear
He proudly strove to hide.

In deep revolving thought he stood
And mused a little space,
Then raised fair Emmeline from the ground
Wi’ mony a fond embrace.

Here, take her, Child of Elle, he said,
And gave her lily hand;
Here, take my dear and only child,
And with her half my land:

Thy father once mine honour wrong’d
In days of youthful pride;
Do thou the injury repair
In fondness for thy bride:

And as thou love and hold her dear,
Heaven prosper thee and thine:
And now my blessing wend wi’ thee
My lovely Emmeline.

This work was published before January 1, 1925, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.