(From the Spanish of Placido)
Enough of love! Let break
its every hold!
Ended my youthful folly! for I know
That, like the dazzling, glister-shedding snow,
Celia, thou art beautiful, but cold.
I do not find in thee that warmth which glows,
Which, all these dreary days, my heart has sought,
That warmth without which love is lifeless, naught
More than a painted fruit, a waxen rose.
Such love as thine, scarce
can it bear love’s name,
Deaf to the pleading notes of his sweet lyre,
A frank, impulsive heart I wish to claim,
A heart that blindly follows its desire.
I wish to embrace a woman full of flame,
I want to kiss a woman made of fire.
FROM THE SPANISH
Twenty years go by on noiseless
He returns, and once again they meet,
She exclaims, “Good heavens! and is that he?”
He mutters, “My God! and that is she!”
FROM THE GERMAN OF UHLAND
Three students once tarried
over the Rhine,
And into Frau Wirthin’s turned to dine.
“Say, hostess, have
you good beer and wine?
And where is that pretty daughter of thine?”
“My beer and wine is
fresh and clear.
My daughter lies on her funeral bier.”
They softly tipped into the
She lay there in the silent gloom.
The first the white cloth
And tearfully upon her gazed.
“If thou wert alive,
O, lovely maid,
My heart at thy feet would to-day be laid!”
The second covered her face
And turned away with grief and pain.
“Ah, thou upon thy snow-white
And I have loved thee so many a year.”
The third drew back again
And kissed the lips so cold and pale.
“I’ve loved thee
always, I love thee to-day,
And will love thee, yes, forever and aye!”
BEFORE A PAINTING
I knew not who had wrought
with skill so fine
What I beheld; nor by what laws of art
He had created life and love and heart
On canvas, from mere color, curve and line.
Silent I stood and made no move or sign;
Not with the crowd, but reverently apart;
Nor felt the power my rooted limbs to start,
But mutely gazed upon that face divine.
And over me the sense of beauty
As music over a raptured listener to
The deep-voiced organ breathing out a hymn;
Or as on one who kneels, his beads to tell,
There falls the aureate glory filtered through
The windows in some old cathedral dim.