Letitia Elizabeth Landon (L. E. L.) in Fisher's Drawing Room Scrap Book, 1837/Black Linn of Linklater
Black Linn of Linklater.Le Linne Noir de Linklater.
BLACK LINN OF LINKLATER.
"Toujours lui—lui partout."—Victor Hugo.
ut of Himself, Him only speak these hills!
I do not see the sunshine on the vale,
I do not hear the low song of the wind
Singing as sings a child. Like fancies flung
Around the midnight pillow of a dream,
Dim pageantries shut out the real scene,
And call up one associate with Him.
I see the ancient Master pale and worn,
Tho’ on him shines the lovely southern heaven
And Naples greets him with festivity.
The Dying by the Dead:—for his great sake,
They have laid bare the city of the lost.
His own creations fill the silent streets;
The Roman pavement rings with golden spurs,
The Highland plaid shades dark Italian eyes,
And the young King himself is Ivanhoe.
But there the old man sits—majestic—wan,
Himself a mighty vision of the past;
The glorious mind has bowed beneath its toil;
He does not hear his name on foreign lips
That thank him for a thousand happy hours.
He does not see the glittering groups that press
In wonder and in homage to his side;
Death is beside his triumph.
When Sir Waller Scott arrived at Naples, the picturesque imagination of the south was all alive to do him honour. Contrary to established etiquette, the king called upon him—
"Nice customs curtsey to great names."
A fête was then given in his honour, and Pompeii was chosen for its site. All the guests took some character from the Waverley novels. The deserted city echoed with music; lamps flung their light over walls so long unconscious of festivity. The city of the Dead suited well the festival of the dying. Sir Walter was present, but unconscious; he sat wan, exhausted, and motionless,—"the centre of the glittering ring" formed by his own genius. The triumph had its usual moral—it came too late.