De Carteret's Leap


Poetry in Jersey


The Lord of St. Ouen's was down by the lake,
When the sun through the mists was beginning to break,
By its margin he sought, as he trod the soft ground,
The Carp to ensnare as they sported around,
From the depths of its waters, so calm that the air
Scarcely rippled the surface, a mirror so fair.
The day is too chill, mists are floating on high,
Drawn from out the dark earth to obscure the bright sky,
Ah ! who are those creeping beneath that high mound
Of glittering sand, with a silence profound ?
Ah, Lord of St. Ouen's, I bid thee beware,
And fly from a deep and a treacherous snare;
The foe will surround thee, thy blood on their steel
Will bedew the cold ground - is there nought to reveal
The danger that threatens ? His steed loudly neighs,
As corslet and faulchion gleam bright in the rays
Of the sun, which now breaks thro' the mist and the gloom
That may light with its beams on De Carteret's tomb.
Mount thy steed, and away ! Now he's off with a bound,
From the foes who had sought Ouen's Lord to surround.
There's a race for a death, there's a race for a life,
Will the steel drink his breath in the mad'ning strife ?
He's away to the hills - they are closely behind;
He ascends the steep bank, but new dangers to find,
On its brow there are foes to cut off his retreat :
He bears himself bravely, his steed's strong and fleet.
To the vale of the Charrière he turns him aside,­
Oh ! on ! the foes follow, their steeds deeply dyed
With blood on their flanks, as they're goaded along,
He'll be slain, though his horse is so fleet and so strong.
Too closely they follow, - he'll ne'er reach the vale !
Of his death to his friends who will bear the sad tale?
Deep banks line the road, two and twenty feet wide­
He is lost or across the deep chasm must ride.
Now aid him brave steed, though thy heart may be broke,
Save thy lord in his need from the faulchion's stroke.
One spring! he bounds over! - alas he is lost;
No! his steed gains his footing - in safety he's crossed
Now hie thee, brave horse, o'er the long sandy plain
On his castle De Carteret looks once again,
Ere he reaches its portal the gallant steed falls,
Yields his breath for his Lord, who is safe by his walls.


T. Rose
The Visitor's Souvenir of the Island of Jersey 1859




Poetry in Jersey





La Société Jersiaise

R'tou à la page d'siez-mé | Back to home page