Lament for the Sons of the Covenant

– on the day the National Covenant was signed in 1638 –

O, Scotland, what hast thou done with thy noble sons?
And with thy daughters, for they, too, are gone from thee.
Thy gibbet has robbed thee of thy worthiest ones,
That loved ye, labored, aye, toiled for your good.
Ye have sent them to the grave with your wicked guns.

O, Scotland, ye misunderstood your bravest children –
Ye called them rebels, ye hunted and made them pay.
Ye scoured your cities, they met in field, ran to hills, then.
Ye crushed with screw and boot, shot and hung – e’en the young.
Dost thou not hear the cries that echo through the glen?

O, Scotland, they did not desire it came to this.
But ye left no choice – they would not suffer another head –
Christ alone shall rule His Kirk, Charles stands amiss!
Worship they would, as God had said, His way alone.
Elsewhere they’d obey the king, but the Kirk wasn’t his.

O, Scotland, ‘twas ye who rebelled against a King.
Ye broke the covenant they kept, sealed by their blood.
Ye gave Him not the crown rights due Him – are ye trembling?
Theirs was the death sentence then – now yours is nigh!
Their blood is on your hands – and the Judge is coming.

O, Scotland, ye have taken from yourself your best.
M’Kail, Crookshanks, Sutherland – and nameless thousands –
E’en if their names are lost to men, in God, they’re blest.
Weep! They no more grace your hills, or e’en crowd your gaols.
Their wisdom, it is gone from thee, forever, at rest.

O, Scotland, they loved their wee bairns – not hated thee –
They fought to keep them safe, to worship free in peace!
But ye destroyed, then their claymores dug their cairns – see!
Their cause was noble, yet proud were your Stuart Kings,
Who would not leave them be, or let them gather free.

O, Scotland, ye ensured their end; drove them to their graves.
But their certain end, not death, but Christ – oh, their faith!
Fearlessly they journeyed on, to their end of days –
Past the pain and years of loss, awaited greater gain –
For those ye killed, a martyr’s crown – for God, He saves!

O, Scotland, thou hast slaughtered thy most faithful –
E’en pastors who sought to heal the persecuted lambs,
Peacemakers who mend the ruptured covenant – prayerful.
If ye had spared them, ye might have heard saving grace –
The same that drove them to glory, always joyful.

O, Scotland, what hast thou done with thy noble sons?
O, M’Kail, but six and twenty; Paton – grey and gentle –
And daughters also, for they, too, are gone from thee.
Like your two brave Margarets, boldly facing the sea.
O weep , ye must weep! Ye were not worthy of them!
For to them, the persecuted, belong the kingdom of heav’n.

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