« VorigeDoorgaan »
THE BRITISH STRIPLING'S
IMITATED FROM STOLBERG
YES, noble old Warrior! this heart has beat high,
Since you told of the deeds which our countrymen wrought;
O lend me the sabre that hung by thy thigh,
And I too will fight as my forefathers fought.
Despise not my youth, for my spirit is steel'd
And I know there is strength in the grasp of my hand;
Yea, as firm as thyself would I march to the field,
And as proudly would die for my dear native land.
In the sports of my childhood I mimick'd the fight,
The sound of a trumpet suspended my
And my fancy still wander'd by day
and by night,
Amid battle and tumult, 'mid conquest Thou leapest from forth
The cell of thy hidden nativity; Never mortal saw
The cradle of the strong one;
Never mortal heard
The gathering of his voices; The deep-murmur'd charm of the son of the rock,
That is lisp'd evermore at his slumberless fountain.
There's a cloud at the portal, a spraywoven veil
As late thro' the city with banners all At the shrine of his ceaseless renewing; streaming It embosoms the roses of dawn,
To the music of trumpets the Warriors It entangles the shafts of the noon,
And into the bed of its stillness
With helmet and scimitars naked and The moonshine sinks down as in slumber,
On their proud - trampling, thunder
hoof'd steeds did they fly;
That the son of the rock, that the
nursling of heaven
May be born in a holy twilight !
Quicken his eyes with celestial dew,
That Styx the detested no more he may view,
And like one of us Gods may conceit
him to be!
For if the nymphs should know my swain,
I fear they'd love him too.
Yet while my joy's unknown,
Thanks, Hebe! I quaff it! Io Paan, I What no one with me shares, seems
This stream so brightly flowing
I'd have thee by my side.
'Good boatman, prithee haste thee,
The happy bridal over
The wanderer ceased to roam, For, seated by her lover,
The boat became her home. And still they sang together As steering o'er the tide :
Row on through wind and weather For ever by my side.'
Her father's leave she bade me gain;
TRANSLATION OF A PASSAGE IN OTTFRIED'S METRICAL PARAPHRASE OF THE GOSPEL
[This paraphrase, written about the time of Charlemagne, is by no means deficient in occasional passages of considerable poetic merit. There is a flow and a tender enthusiasm in the following lines which even in the translation will not, I flatter myself, fail to interest the reader. Ottfried is describing the circumstances immediately following the birth of our Lord. Most interesting is it to consider the effect when the feelings are wrought above the natural pitch by the belief of something mysterious, while all the images are purely natural. Then it is that religion and poetry strike deepest.]
SHE gave with joy her virgin breast;
Singing placed him on her lap,
Hung o'er him with her looks of love,
With such a babe in one blest bed,