Verse > Anthologies > Margarete Münsterberg, ed., trans. > A Harvest of German Verse
Margarete Münsterberg, ed., trans.  A Harvest of German Verse.  1916.
The Loreley
By Heinrich Heine (1799–1856)
I KNOW not what evermore grieves me,
What makes me sorrow so:
A tale of old times never leaves me,
A tale of long ago.
’Tis cool and the shadows are growing,        5
And calmly flows the Rhine,
The peak of the mountain is glowing
Where evening sunrays shine.
There sits the most beautiful maiden
On high, so wondrous fair,        10
With glittering gems she is laden,
She combeth her golden hair.
Her golden comb doth glisten,
She sings a song the while,
The tune for all that listen        15
Has power to beguile.
The man in the boat is harking,
He’s seized with wild, wild woe,
And never the rock-reefs marking,
He gazes on high from below.        20
The waves, I believe, will be flinging
The man from his boat to die;
And all that from the singing—
The lay of the Loreley!

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