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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
England: Vols. I–IV. 1876–79.


Annot of Benallay

By Robert Stephen Hawker (1803–1875)

AT lone midnight the death-bell tolled,

To summon Annot’s clay:

For common eyes must not behold

The griefs of Benallay.

Meek daughter of a haughty line,

Was Lady Annot born:

That light which was not long to shine,

The sun that set at morn.

They shrouded her in maiden white,

They buried her in pall;

And the ring he gave her faith to plight

Shines on her finger small.

The curate reads the dead man’s prayer

The silent leech stands by:

The sob of voiceless love is there,

And sorrow’s vacant eye.

’T is over. Two and two they tread

The churchyard’s homeward way:

Farewell! farewell! thou lovely dead:

Thou Flower of Benallay.

The sexton stalks with tottering limb

Along the chancel floor:

He waits, that old man gray and grim,

To close the narrow door.

“Shame! shame! these rings of stones and gold!”

The ghastly caitiff said;

“Better that living hands should hold,

Than glisten on the dead.”

The evil wish wrought evil deed,

The pall is rent away:

And lo! beneath the shattered lid,

The Flower of Benallay.

But life gleams from those opening eyes,

Blood thrills that lifted hand:

And awful words are in her cries,

Which none may understand.

Joy! ’t is the miracle of yore,

Of the city calléd Nain:—

Lo! glad feet throng the sculptured floor,

To hail their dead again.

Joy in the hall of Benallay,

A stately feast is spread:

Lord Harold is the bridegroom gay,

The bride the arisen dead.