These old grey stones, what are they ?— pillars reared1
By men who lived and died in Orkney land,2
Long ere the footsteps shod with peace appeared3
To plant the Cross on this surf-beaten strand ;4
Pillars that preach high thought and mightful hand5
Of men that bravely through grim ocean steered,6
And stoutly followed what they proudly planned7
Through sweat and blood, nor from their purpose veered.8
What men ?— Celt or the Teut ?— I nothing care,9
My loves are with the living; not the dead ;10
But for strong men who knew to do and dare11
I drop the loyal tear and bow the head.12
Let gentle moons glide o’er the dumb grey stones13
That guard their graves !— I would not vex their bones.14