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The German Classics of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, Volume 01 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 363 pages of information about The German Classics of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, Volume 01.

Good sir, these things you view indeed,
Just as by other men they’re view’d;
We must more cleverly proceed,
Before life’s joys our grasp elude. 
The devil! thou hast hands and feet,
And head and heart are also thine;
What I enjoy with relish sweet—­
Is it on that account less mine? 
If for six stallions I can pay,
Do I not own their strength and speed? 
A proper man I dash away,
As their two dozen legs were mine indeed. 
Up then, from idle pondering free,
And forth into the world with me! 
I tell you what;—­your speculative churl
Is like a beast which some ill spirit leads,
On barren wilderness, in ceaseless whirl,
While all around lie fair and verdant meads.

FAUST

But how shall we begin?

MEPHISTOPHELES
 We will go hence with speed,
A place of torment this indeed! 
A precious life, thyself to bore,
And some few youngsters evermore! 
Leave that to neighbor Paunch!  Withdraw? 
Why wilt thou plague thyself with thrashing straw? 
The very best that thou dost know
Thou dar’st not to the striplings show. 
One in the passage now doth wait!

FAUST

I’m in no mood to see him now.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Poor lad!  He must be tired, I trow;
He must not go disconsolate. 
Hand me thy cap and gown; the mask
Is for my purpose quite first rate.

[He changes his dress.]

Now leave it to my wit!  I ask
But quarter of an hour; meanwhile equip,
And make all ready for our pleasant trip!

[Exit FAUST.]

MEPHISTOPHELES (in FAUST’S long gown)

Mortal! the loftiest attributes of men,
Reason and Knowledge, only thus contemn;
Still let the Prince of lies, without control,
With shows, and mocking charms delude thy soul,
I have thee unconditionally then!—­
Fate hath endow’d him with an ardent mind,
Which unrestrain’d still presses on forever,
And whose precipitate endeavor
Earth’s joys o’erleaping, leaveth them behind. 
Him will I drag through life’s wild waste,
Through scenes of vapid dulness, where at last
Bewilder’d, he shall falter, and stick fast;
And, still to mock his greedy haste,
Viands and drink shall float his craving lips beyond—­
Vainly he’ll seek refreshment, anguish-tost,
And were he not the devil’s by his bond,
Yet must his soul infallibly be lost!

A STUDENT enters.

STUDENT

But recently I’ve quitted home,
Full of devotion am I come
A man to know and hear, whose name
With reverence is known to fame.

MEPHISTOPHELES

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