Fragments Of Ancient Poetry, Fragment XV

A poem by James Macpherson

[1]Where is Gealchossa my love, the
daughter of Tuathal-Teachvar?
I left her in the hall of the plain, when I
fought with the hairy Ulfadha. Return
soon, she said, O Lamderg! for
here I wait in sorrow. Her white breaft
rose with sighs; her cheek was wet
with tears. But she cometh not to meet
Lamderg; or sooth his soul after battle.
Silent is the hall of joy; I hear not
the voice of the singer. Brann does
not shake his chains at the gate, glad
at the coming of his master. Where
is Gealchossa my love, the daughter of
Tuathal-Teachvar?

[Footnote: The signification of the names in this fragment are; Gealchossack, white-legged. Tuathal-Teachtmhar, the surly, but fortunate man. Lambhdearg, bloodyhand. Ulfadba, long beard. Fichios, the conqueror of men.]

Lamderg! says Firchios son of Aydon,
Gealchossa may be on the hill;
she and her chosen maids pursuing the
flying deer.

Firchios! no noise I hear. No
sound in the wood of the hill. No
deer fly in my sight; no panting dog
pursueth. I see not Gealchossa my
love; fair as the full moon setting on
the hills of Cromleach. Go, Firchios!
go to Allad, the grey-haired son of
the rock. He liveth in the circle of
stones; he may tell of Gealchossa.

[Footnote: Allad is plainly a Druid consulted on this occasion.]

Allad! saith Firchios, thou who
dwellest in the rock; thou who tremblest
alone; what saw thine eyes of
age?

I saw, answered Allad the old, Ullin the son of Carbre: He came like a
cloud from the hill; he hummed a surly
song as he came, like a storm in
leafless wood. He entered the hall of
the plain. Lamderg, he cried, most
dreadful of men! fight, or yield to Ullin.
Lamderg, replied Gealchoffa,
Lamderg is not here: he fights the
hairy Ulfadha; mighty man, he is not
here. But Lamderg never yields; he
will fight the son of Carbre. Lovely art
thou, O daughter of Tuathal-Teachvar!
said Ullin. I carry thee to the
house of Carbre; the valiant shall have
Gealchossa. Three days from the top
of Cromleach will I call Lamderg to
fight. The fourth, you belong to Ullin,
if Lamderg die, or fly my sword.

Allad! peace to thy dreams!--found
the horn, Firchios!--Ullin may
hear, and meet me on the top of Cromleach.

Lamderg rushed on like a storm.
On his spear he leaped over rivers. Few
were his strides up the hill. The rocks
fly back from his heels; loud crashing
they bound to the plain. His armour,
his buckler rung. He hummed a surly
song, like the noise of the falling
stream. Dark as a cloud he stood above;
his arms, like meteors, shone.
From the summit of the hill, he rolled
a rock. Ullin heard in the hall of
Carbre.--

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