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BETH GELERT; OR, THE GRAVE OF THE GREYHOUND, by                     Poet's Biography
First Line: The spearmen heard the bugle sound
Last Line: To save llewellyn's heir.
Variant Title(s): Llewellyn And His Dog
Subject(s): Greyhounds; Hunting; Hunters

THE spearmen heard the bugle sound,
And cheerily smiled the morn;
And many a brach, and many a hound,
Obeyed Llewellyn's horn.
And still he blew a louder blast,
And gave a lustier cheer,
"Come, Gelert, come, wert never last
Llewellyn's horn to hear.
"O, where does faithful Gelert roam,
The flower of all his race;
So true, so brave, -- a lamb at home,
A lion in the chase?"
In sooth, he was a peerless hound,
The gift of royal John;
But now no Gelert could be found,
And all the chase rode on.
That day Llewellyn little loved
The chase of hart and hare;
And scant and small the booty proved,
For Gelert was not there.
Unpleased, Llewellyn homeward hied,
When, near the portal seat,
His truant Gelert he espied,
Bounding his lord to greet.
But, when he gained his castle-door,
Aghast the chieftain stood;
The hound all o'er was smeared with gore;
His lips, his fangs, ran blood.
Llewellyn gazed with fierce surprise;
Unused such looks to meet,
His favorite checked his joyful guise,
And crouched, and licked his feet.
Onward, in haste, Llewellyn passed,
And on went Gelert too;
And still, where'er his eyes he cast,
Fresh blood-gouts shocked his view.
O'erturned his infant's bed he found,
With blood-stained covert rent;
And all around the walls and ground
With recent blood besprent.
He called his child, -- no voice replied, --
He searched with terror wild;
Blood, blood he found on every side,
But nowhere found his child.
"Hell-hound! my child's by thee devoured,"
The frantic father cried;
And to the hilt his vengeful sword
He plunged in Gelert's side.
Aroused by Gelert's dying yell,
Some slumberer wakened nigh:
What words the parent's joy could tell
To hear his infant's cry!
Concealed beneath a tumbled heap
His hurried search had missed,
All glowing from his rosy sleep,
The cherub boy he kissed.
Nor scathe had he, nor harm, nor dread,
But, the same couch beneath,
Lay a gaunt wolf, all torn and dead,
Tremendous still in death.
Ah, what was then Llewellyn's pain!
For now the truth was clear;
His gallant hound the wolf had slain
To save Llewellyn's heir.

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