Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafemuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Lyr Req: Poem Alan Grey at Waterloo

LadyJean 02 Jun 10 - 02:05 AM
LadyJean 02 Jun 10 - 10:48 PM
Jim Dixon 04 Jun 10 - 11:18 AM
LadyJean 04 Jun 10 - 11:12 PM
Jim Dixon 09 Jun 10 - 10:13 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:





Subject: Lyr Req: Poem Alan Grey at Waterloo
From: LadyJean
Date: 02 Jun 10 - 02:05 AM

Thinking back to my Scottish dancing days, I remembered when somebody recited a poem about Alan Grey at Waterloo seeing the spirits of the fallen on the eve of the battle. The poem scared the hell out of me. I've been looking for it for a couple of years now. Poemhunter.com doesn't have it. Does anyone there know the title, or better yet, the poem?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Poem Alan Grey at Waterloo
From: LadyJean
Date: 02 Jun 10 - 10:48 PM

i did try poemhunter.com. They didn't have it. The other poetry sites seem to be about publishing people's poetry, which is nice, but not what I need.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Poem Alan Grey at Waterloo
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 04 Jun 10 - 11:18 AM

Google Books is a good way to find poetry, provided it's old enough to be out of copyright—that means before 1923. Do you have any idea how old this poem is?

Even if the poem is under copyright, Google might be able to point you to a book which you might then find in a library, but we have to have some good information to search with.

Was Alan Grey a real person? Are you sure you have the spelling right? (Alan, not Allen or Allan; and Grey, not Gray?)

Better yet, can you give me an exact quote of even one line from the poem? Or an unusual phrase of several words?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Poem Alan Grey at Waterloo
From: LadyJean
Date: 04 Jun 10 - 11:12 PM

It's a very old poem, 19th century, certainly. Alan Gray, I think was a real person, but don't quote me on that.

There's a chorus to the poem, something about "Call the dead from battle- to sleep without a shroud." And I'm sorry, I'm never sure of the spelling.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: THE DANCE OF DEATH (Sir Walter Scott)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 09 Jun 10 - 10:13 PM

I have boldfaced the words that you mentioned in your request:

From The Works of Walter Scott, Esq., Vol. 8 (Edinburgh: Longman and Co., et al., 1813), pages 241-251:


THE DANCE OF DEATH.

I.

Night and morning were at meeting
    Over Waterloo;
Cocks had sung their earliest greeting,
    Faint and low they crew,
For no paly beam yet shone
On the heights of Mount Saint John;
Tempest-clouds prolong'd the sway
Of timeless darkness over day;
Whirlwind, thunder-clap, and shower,
Mark'd it a predestined hour.
Broad and frequent through the night
Flash'd the sheets of levin-light;
Musquets, glancing lightnings back,
Shew'd the dreary bivouack
    Where the soldier lay,
Chill and stiff, and drench'd with rain,
Wishing dawn of morn again
    Though death should come with day.

II.

'Tis at such a tide and hour.
Wizard, witch, and fiend have power,
And ghastly forms through mist and shower
    Gleam on the gifted ken;
And then the affrighted prophet's ear
Drinks whispers strange of fate and fear,
Presaging death and ruin near
    Among the sons of men;—

Apart from Albyn's war-array,
'Twas then grey Allan sleepless lay;
Grey Allan, who, for many a day,
    Had follow'd stout and stern,
Where, through battle's rout and reel,
Storm of shot and hedge of steel,
Led the grandson of Lochiel,
    Valiant Fassiefern.

Through steel and shot he leads no more,
Low-laid 'mid friends' and foemen's gore—
But long his native lake's wild shore,
And Sunart rough, and high Ardgower,
    And Morvern long shall tell,
And proud Bennevis hear with awe,
How, upon bloody Quatre-Bras,
Brave Cameron heard the wild hurra
    Of conquest as he fell.

III.

'Lone on the outskirts of the host,
The weary sentinel held post,
And heard, through darkness far aloof,
The frequent clang of courser's hoof,
Where held the cloak'd patrole their course,
And spurr'd 'gainst storm the swerving horse;
But there are sounds in Allan's ear,
Patrole nor sentinel may hear,
And sights before his eye aghast
Invisible to them have pass'd,
    When down the destined plain
'Twixt Britain and the bands of France,
Wild as marsh-borne meteors glance,
Strange phantoms wheel'd a revel dance,
    And doom'd the future slain.—

Such forms were seen, such sounds were heard,
When Scotland's James his march prepared
    For Flodden's fatal plain;
Such, when he drew his ruthless sword,
As Chusers of the Slain, adored
    The yet unchristen'd Dane.

An indistinct and phantom band,
They wheel'd their ring-dance hand in hand,
    With gesture wild and dread;
The Seer, who watch'd them ride the storm,
Saw through their faint and shadowy form
    The lightning's flash more red;
And still their ghastly roundelay
Was of the coming battle-fray,
    And of the destined dead.

IV.
Song.

Wheel the wild dance
While lightnings glance,
    And thunders rattle loud,
And call the brave
To bloody grave,
    To sleep without a shroud.

Our airy feet,
So light and fleet,
    They do not bend the rye
That sinks its head when whirlwinds rave,
And swells again in eddying wave,
    As each wild gust blows by;

But still the corn,
At dawn of morn,
    Our fatal steps that bore,
At eve lies waste
A trampled paste
    Of blackening mud and gore.

V.

Wheel the wild dance
While lightnings glance,
    And thunders rattle loud,
And call the brave
To bloody grave,
    To sleep without a shroud.

Wheel the wild dance!
Brave sons of France,
    For you our ring makes room;
Makes space full wide
For martial pride,
    For banner, spear, and plume.

Approach, draw near,
Proud cuirassier!
    Room for the men of steel!
Through crest and plate
The broad-sword's weight
    Both head and heart shall feel.

VI.

Wheel the wild dance
While lightnings glance,
    And thunders rattle loud,
And call the brave
To bloody grave,
    To sleep without a shroud.

Sons of the spear!
You feel us near
    In many a ghastly dream;
With fancy's eye
Our forms you spy,
    And hear our fatal scream.

With clearer sight
Ere falls the night,
    Just when to weal or woe
Your disembodied souls take flight
On trembling wing—each startled sprite
    Our choir of death shall know.

VII.

Wheel the wild dance
While lightnings glance,
    And thunders rattle loud,
And call the brave
To bloody grave,
    To sleep without a shroud.

Burst, ye clouds, in tempest showers,
Redder rain shall soon be ours—
    See the east grows wan—
Yield we place to sterner game,
Ere deadlier bolts and drearer flame
Shall the welkin's thunders shame;
Elemental rage is tame
    To the wrath of man."

VIII.

At morn, grey Allan's mates with awe
Heard of the vision'd sights he saw,
    The legend heard him say;
But the seer's gifted eye was dim,
Deafen'd his ear, and stark his limb,
    Ere closed that bloody day—
He sleeps far from his highland heath,—
But often of the Dance of Death
    His comrades tell the tale
On picquet-post, when ebbs the night,
And waning watch-fires glow less bright,
    And dawn is glimmering pale.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 22 July 6:30 PM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.