Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Waddington, ed. > The Sonnets of Europe
Samuel Waddington, comp.  The Sonnets of Europe.  1888.
Hope Repulsed
By Erik Johan Stagnelius (1793–1823)
Translated by Edmund Gosse

UP through the ruins of my earthly dreams
  I catch the stars of immortality;
  What store of joy can hide in heaven for me?
What other hope feed those celestial gleams?
Can there be other grapes whose nectar streams        5
  For me, whom earth’s vine fails? oh! can it be
  That this abandoned heart again may see
A forehead garlanded, an eye that beams?
Alas! ’tis childhood’s dream that vanisheth!
The heaven-born soul that feigns it can return,        10
  And end in peace this hopeless strife with fate!
There is no backward step; ’tis only death
  Can quench at last these wasting fires that burn,
  Can break the chain, the captive liberate.

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