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THOMAS THE RHYMER [RYMER]: MODERNIZED FROM THE PROPHECIES, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: When seven years were come and gane
Last Line: "with hempen bridles, and horse of tree."
Subject(s): Thomas Of Erceldoune (1220-1297); Thomas The Rhymer; Thomas The Rymer; Thomas Learmont


WHEN seven years were come and gane,
The sun blinked fair on pool and stream;
And Thomas lay on Huntlie bank,
Like one awakened from a dream.

He heard the trampling of a steed,
He saw the flash of armor flee,
And he beheld a gallant knight,
Come riding down by the Eildon Tree.

He was a stalwart knight, and strong;
Of giant make he 'peared to be:
He stirred his horse, as he were wode,
Wi' gilded spurs, of faushion free.

Says -- "Well met, well met, true Thomas
Some uncouth ferlies shew to me."
Says -- "Christ thee save, Corspatrick brave!
Thrice welcome, good Dunbar, to me!

"Light down, light down, Corspatrick brave,
And I will shew thee curses three,
Shall gar fair Scotland greet and grane,
And change the green to the black livery.

"A storm shall roar, this very hour,
From Rosse's Hills to Solway sea." --
"Ye lied, ye lied, ye warlock hoar!
For the sun shines sweet on fauld and lea."

He put his hand on the earlie's head;
He shewed him a rock, beside the sea,
Where a king lay stiff, beneath his steed,
And steel-dight nobles wiped their e'e.

"The neist curse lights on Branxton Hills:
By Flodden's high and heathery side,
Shall wave a banner, red as blude,
And chieftains throng wi' meikle pride.

"A Scottish king shall come full keen;
The ruddy lion beareth he:
A feathered arrow sharp, I ween,
Shall make him wink and warre to see.

"When he is bloody, and all to bledde,
Thus to his men he still shall say --
'For God's sake, turn ye back again,
And give yon southern folk a fray!
Why should I lose, the right is mine?
My doom is not to die this day.'

"Yet turn ye to the eastern hand,
And woe and wonder ye sall see;
How forty thousand spearmen stand,
Where yon rank river meets the sea.

"There shall the lion lose the gylte,
And the libbards bear it clean away;
At Pinkyn Cleuch there shall be spilt
Much gentil blude that day."

"Enough, enough, of curse and ban;
Some blessing shew thou now to me,
Or, by the faith o' my bodie," Corspatrick said,
"Ye shall rue the day ye e'er saw me!"

"The first of blessings I shall thee shew,
Is by a burn, that's called of bread;
Where Saxon men shall time the bow,
And find their arrows lack the head.

"Beside that brigg, out ower that burn,
Where the water bickereth bright and sheen,
Shall many a falling courser spurn,
And knights shall die in battle keen.

"Beside a headless cross of stone,
The libbards there shall lose the gree:
The raven shall come, the erne shall go,
And drink the Saxon blude sea free.
The cross of stone they shall not know,
So thick the corses there shall be."

"But tell me now," said brave Dunbar,
"True Thomas, tell now unto me,
What man shall rule the isle Britain,
Even from the north to the southern sea?"

"A French queen shall bear the son,
Shall rule all Britain to the sea:
He of the Bruce's blude shall come,
As near as in the ninth degree.

"The waters worship shall his race;
Likewise the waves of the farthest sea;
For they shall ride ower ocean wide,
With hempen bridles, and horse of tree."





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