George Gordon McCrae

Here you will find the Poem L'envoi from Balladeadro of poet George Gordon McCrae

L'envoi from Balladeadro

See where the allied armies camped, 
Where plumed and painted dancers tramped-- 
'Tis still the same, the same wild scene, 
As though the ploughshare ne'er had been. 
Grey Tomboritha still the skies 
With bold and massy front defies; 
And gorge, and chasm, and long-ledged rocks 
Echo the ever-thundering shocks 
Of waters dashed with headlong force, 
Wild cataracts leaping on their course. 
In dark Maroka's vale the stream 
Reflects the slanting solar beam; 
There the proud lyre-bird* spreads his tail, 
And mocks the notes of hill and dale-- 
Whether the wild dog's plaintive howl 
Or cry of piping waterfowl, 
Or the shrill parrot's answering scream, 
As, gem-like, dangling o'er the stream 
He hears, re-echoed from the rock 
The whirlwind whistle of the flock. 
Alas! and what a change is there! 
And yet the landscape still is fair. 
There smiled the woodland by the rill: 
'Tis gone--the waters turn a mill. 
There the Mirbango village lay: 
Mirbango maidens, where? O say, 
Where the tall braves, whose warrior songs 
Once wooed the dark-eyed Darakongs. 
Yon sheltered hollow, 'neath the steep, 
Now dotted o'er with browsing sheep, 
Holds the last graves the dark man owns-- 
The treasure of his father's bones. 
All else, alas! has passed, is o'er; 
Time's wing has swept hill, vale, and shore; 
All, hence to farthest northern strand, 
Obeys the white, "the blood-stained hand;" 
And grey-beards by the fire at night, 
Warm, basking in its ruddy light, 
The young, in solemn tones, advise 
To shun all stranger-women's eyes. 
"Our fathers," quoth they, "as we trace, 
Thus lost a country--doomed a race."