From my grave to wander I am forc'd
Still to seek The God's long-sever'd link,
Still to love the bridegroom I have lost,
And the life-blood of his heart to drink;
When his race is run,
I must hasten on,
And the young must 'neath my vengeance sink.
Beauteous youth! No longer mayst thou live;
Here must shrivel up thy form so fair;
Did not I to thee a token give.
Taking in return this lock of hair?
View it to thy sorrow!
Grey thou'lt be to-morrow,
Only to grow brown again when there.
Mother, to this final prayer give ear!
Let a funeral pile be straightway dress'd;
Open then my cell so sad and drear,
That the flames may give the lovers rest!
When ascends the fire
From the glowing pyre,
To the gods of old we'll hasten, blest.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1797)
Translated by Edgar Alfred Bowring