Annan Water Poem by Joanna Baillie

Annan Water



WITH rapture, Annan! all exclaim,
Thy banks how varied and how gay!
Why should a name, well known to fame,
Unsung remain in modern lay?
So rich thy dale! as, from old Rome,
Th' invader's footsteps to induce:
So fair! in future to become
Your royal home, O valiant Bruce!

Of time's decay, ah! how partakes
The mansion of your bright domain;
Surrounded with its smiling lakes,
Which welcom'd Wallace and his train.

While England's captive, that brave knight
Scotland arous'd, ere your return:
Tho' gone, his bands reclaim'd your right,
And burst our chains at Bannockburn.

Such contests crimson'd long thy wave,
And other feuds succeeded those,
Till blest events united have
The Shamrock, Thistle, and the Rose.
Lo, where huge Errick's awful rise
Thy birth-place forms with shelt'ring wings,
Embosom'd there, a village lies,
Fam'd for its air and healing springs.

Peaceful 'midst woods, and meads, thy stream
Glides gently to th' engulphing main;
Plaintive, thy deep-ton'd murmurs seem
Of life's short span oft to complain.

To industry's choice, arts still lend,
Thy aid to turn her active wheels;
Her works to cheer thy margin tend,
Her impulse culture also feels.

Propitious sources! whence arise
Britain's vast trade on seas afloat;
Thence still in size thy sea-port swells,--
Sails crowd thy strand near Bruce's moat.

And while thy sons with skill and care,
From day to day renew their toil,
May virtue their young minds prepare
To prize and guard their native soil!
Resplendent stream! tho' short thy course,
Thy spirit rising to the sky,
In clouds embodied, is the source
Whence nursing showers thy rills supply.

Thus we, the children of a day,
Who see thy beauteous vale improve,
Will hope, when life has pass'd away,
To view thy progress from above.

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