The Border Reivers Website

The Poems of Will H  Ogilvie        


Will Ogilvie was born at Holefield Farm near Kelso, Scotland in 1869. 

His adventurous nature drew him to Australia when he was 20 where he spent twelve years in The Australian Outback. He became an accomplished stationhand, drover and horsebreaker. He displayed yet another of his talents making a name for himself as a writer of romantic verse of his adventures in the Outback. 

Will returned to Scotland in 1901 and wrote stirring poems of the Borderlands. His writings reflected his love of the Borderlands and a deep insight into the lives and minds of the people who lived there during the times of the Border Reivers. 

In his 94th year, in 1963, Will H Ogilvie died at his beloved home at Ashkirk. His ashes were scattered on the hillside on the road to Roberton. 

In 1993, the Will H Ogilvie Memorial Committee erected a stone memorial on the spot.



Last night a wind from Lammermoor came roaring
up the glen
With the tramp of trooping horses and the laugh of
reckless men 

And struck a mailed hand on the gate and cried in
rebel glee: 

 "Come forth.  Come forth, my Borderer, and ride the
March with me!"


I said, "Oh!  Wind of Lammermoor, the night's too
dark to ride,

   And all the men that fill the glen are ghosts of men
that died! 

   The floods are down in Bowmont Burn, the moss is

   Go back, wild Wind of Lammermoor, to Lauderdale
-and sleep!" 


     Out spoke the Wind of Lammermoor, "We know the
road right well, 

The road that runs by Kale and Jed across the
Carter Fell.

   There is no man of all the men in this grey troop
of mine 

 But blind might ride the Borderside from Teviothead
    to Tyne! 


The horses fretted on their bits and pawed the flints
to fire,

The riders swung them to the South full-faced to
their desire;

"Come said the Wind from Lammermoor,"
and spoke full scornfully,

"Have ye no pride to mount and ride your fathers'
road with me?


A roan horse to the gate they led, foam-flecked and
travelled far,

A snorting roan that tossed his head and flashed
his forehead star; 

Then came the sound of clashing steel and hoof-
tramp up the glen.

And two by two we cantered through, a troop
of ghostly men!


I know not if the farms we fired are burned to
ashes yet!

I know not if the stirks grew tired before the stars
were set!

I only know that late last night when Northern
 winds blew free,

A troop of men rode up the glen and brought a horse
for me! 

                     Will  H  Ogilvie

 By kind permission of Mrs Catherine Reid  


Border Stories Index