Do as you will—
this in not right.
But when Gudmund comes will your heart grow light—
Light, as when I was a child, again.
So much has changed—ah, so much!—since then—
Margit, you shall be happy and gay!
Have you not serving-maids many, and thralls?
Costly robes hang in rows on your chamber walls;
How rich you are, none can say.
By day you can ride in the forest deep,
Chasing the hart and the hind;
By night in a lordly bower you can sleep,
On pillows of silk reclined.
MARGIT. [Looking toward the window.]
And he comes to Solhoug! He, as a guest!
What say you?
Naught.—Deck you out in your
That fortune which seemeth to you so bright
May await yourself.
Margit, say what you mean!
MARGIT. [Stroking her hair.]
I mean—nay, no more! ’Twill
shortly be seen—;
I mean—should a wooer ride hither to-night—?
A wooer? For whom?
That he’d ta’en the wrong road full soon he would see.
What would you say if a valiant knight
Begged for your hand?
That my heart was too light
To think upon suitors or choose a mate.
But if he were mighty, and rich, and great?
O, were he a king, did his palace hold
Stores of rich garments and ruddy gold,
’Twould ne’er set my heart desiring.
With you I am rich enough here, meseeems,
With summer and sun and the murmuring streams,
And the birds in the branches quiring.
Dear sister mine—here shall my dwelling be;
And to give any wooer my hand in fee,
For that I am too busy, and my heart too full of glee!
[SIGNE runs out to the left, singing.
[After a pause.] Gudmund Alfson coming hither! Hither—to Solhoug? No, no, it cannot be.—Signe heard him singing, she said! When I have heard the pine-trees moaning in the forest afar, when I have heard the waterfall thunder and the birds pipe their lure in the tree-tops, it has many a time seemed to me as though, through it all, the sound of Gudmund’s songs came blended. And yet he was far from here.—Signe has deceived herself. Gudmund cannot be coming.