"College des Ecossais, Montpellier".
Verse about the Scots
College by Patrick Geddes.
Four years syne we
found this cottage
Ruined - croft neglected long,
Stony, barren olives hewn wrong --
Here's the place to build our college!
Stones! -- for terrace-building ready!
Soil! - with deep and careful tillage, Needs but labour long and steady,
Water too! - 'tis dry, our village!
And our Outlook!
That's the secret
Open to all with eyes,
Here's the place for all who seek read
Nature! City 'fore us lies!
So round cottage
Higher, lower, either side,
Puzzlement of friends and neighbours,
As tower looks out far and wide!
First three students,
then four others,
Half-a-dozen, still few more;
Yet enough to make beginning,
And plan for another score!
First two years we've
passed six theses,
Now progress as many more,
Fresh minds soon will come to join us,
Interpreting and gathering lore.
House and Garden,
Of culture, urban, rural,
Survey the whole world macrocosm,
West 'Frisco;- east, to Surul!
So raise we here
Wrought fire-free, roofs and walls,
With chambers silent, as Thought claims,
Yet Music through its halls!
Live thence beyond,
'mid gardens fair,
Wrought deep 'tween hardened rocks,
Where Art with Nature mingles rare,
Their secret each unlocks!
Thence further roam
- o'er moorland heath,
Rocks bare - flowers rich and strange -
Read Evolution of great world!
Seas ancient! - Seasons' change!
Look sunward too
- see Midland Sea -
Yet man's world-mastering ways;
Riquetti's triumph! - Bronze-age Road! --
Phare! Recent, ancient days!
From heights and
Tower sweep far your ken,
East? - yonder's Mont Ventoux!
-- West? - see at dawn shine out sublime
Vast snows of Canigou!
North? - climb the
noble Pic St. Loup,
'Yond Hortus cliffs, Aigoual!
Through Cavennes drive on "Brother Ass!"
Glens - canyons - survey all!
Yet even there man
Old Flahault's here before us!
Since forty years hus hort de Dieu
Tunes living forests' chorus!
Thence come you down
to your Chateau,
Be each a Marquis d'Assas!
Here's History through a thousand years,
No mere play-place for Jack-Ass!
But where you each
past Age may live,
Dark - Middle - the Renascence:-
The Revolution too will give
You scope for fresh Revivance!
Come back to City:
Red Sea and Black, Spain too,
Italy, Greece, all landing there
Baled treasures, old and new.
Wise Jews and Moors
come most from Spain;
Learned herbalist, skilled leech,
Come here to sooth our sick folks' pain,
For deep, kind treatments reach!
foremost Western School,
Herb-students' Garden too;
And here may Michael Scot have found
Lost Aristotle anew.
In Latin, turned
All eager youth soon reading!
Great Paris thus, for learning ripe
Woke bright to world's thought-leading!
French learning thus
had two World-Schools,
Here doctors, there divines!
To each came law: both wise and fools
Wrote books, heady as wines!
through all our lands
Spread far - to Scot and Russian,
Aristotle, in Aquinas' hands
Reached Sums - deep discussion!
Soon Petrarch here
long studies made,
Next Rabelais as well;
These the new learning bred, and spread -
Popes' castle to friars call!
And since their days,
our ancient Schools
Have gone on healing, thinking!
Hence at their wells, with wide world's youth,
We here to-day are drinking!
Come back to College:
-- Future's germ -
For Scotland, old 'mong nations,
Looks backward, forward, -- Janus-Herm!
Revives her ancient
League with France,
Rampant 'mid fleurs-de-lys,
But now, with Peace-doves' flight - Love's dance -
Seeks more than Golden Fleece!
'Yond blatant Nationalism's
'Yond Christendom's disunion,
For East and West we'll strive to raise
Eutopia - towards World Union!
Scots College and
American as well as Indian -
Sister nations, old and new,
Come ye, build your college too!