Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Scotland: Vols. VI–VIII. 1876–79.



By Fitz-Greene Halleck (1790–1867)

(See full text)

To a Rose Brought from near Alloway Kirk, in Ayrshire, in the Autumn of 1822

WILD rose of Alloway! my thanks;

Thou mindst me of that autumn noon

When first we met upon “the banks

And braes o’ bonny Doon.”

Like thine, beneath the thorn-tree’s bough,

My sunny hour was glad and brief;

We ’ve crossed the winter sea, and thou

Art withered—flower and leaf.


I ’ve stood beside the cottage-bed

Where the bard-peasant first drew breath;

A straw-thatched roof above his head,

A straw-wrought couch beneath.

And I have stood beside the pile,

His monument,—that tells to heaven

The homage of earth’s proudest isle,

To that bard-peasant given.


And consecrated ground it is,

The last, the hallowed home of one

Who lives upon all memories,

Though with the buried gone.

Such graves as his are pilgrim-shrines,

Shrines to no code or creed confined,—

The Delphian vales, the Palestines,

The Meccas of the mind.

Sages, with wisdom’s garland wreathed,

Crowned kings, and mitred priests of power,

And warriors with their bright swords sheathed,

The mightiest of the hour;

And lowlier names, whose humble home

Is lit by fortune’s dimmer star,

Are there,—o’er wave and mountain come,

From countries near and far;

Pilgrims, whose wandering feet have pressed

The Switzer’s snow, the Arab’s sand,

Or trod the piled leaves of the west,

My own green forest-land;

All ask the cottage of his birth,

Gaze on the scenes he loved and sung,

And gather feelings not of earth

His fields and streams among.

They linger by the Doon’s low trees,

And pastoral Nith, and wooded Ayr,

And round thy sepulchres, Dumfries!

The poet’s tomb is there.

But what to them the sculptor’s art,

His funeral columns, wreaths, and urns?

Wear they not graven on the heart

The name of Robert Burns?