PILE OF FOULDREY CASTLE,
No memory of its former state,
No record of its fame,
A broken wall, a fallen tower,
A half-forgotten name;
A gloomy shadow on the wave,
And silence deep as in the grave.
And yet it had its glorious days,
It had its hour of pride,
When o'er the drawbridge gallantly
Its warriors wont to ride;
When silver shield, and plume of snow,
Were mirror'd in the wave below.
In sooth, that was a stirring time
Of chivalry and song,
When the bright spear was put in rest,
And the right arm was strong;
When minstrel meed, and ladye's glove,
Were high rewards of war and love.
Oh! vain delusion, cruel days
Were then upon the land;
A battlement on every wall,
A sword in every hand;
And rose the cry, and poured the flood,
Of human wrong, and human blood.
Then many a stately castle stood
O'er dungeons dark and deep;
Then many a noble robber wont
The king's highway to keep.
Ah! these were not the times to praise,
Thank God, we know more peaceful days.
Oh! better that the ivy wreath
Should clothe the mouldering tower,
Than it should be a place of strength,
For passion and for power.
All glory to those stern old times,
But leave them to their minstrel rhymes.