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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
Song: Farewell
By Joseph Viktor von Scheffel (1826–1886)
 
From ‘The Trumpeter of Säkkingen’

THIS is the bitterness of life’s long story,—
  That ever near the rose the thorns are set;
Poor heart, that dwells at first in dreams of glory,
  The parting comes, and eyes with tears are wet.
Ah, once I read thine eyes, thy spirit’s prison,        5
  And love and joy in their clear depths could see:
    May God protect thee! ’twas too fair a vision;
      May God protect thee! it was not to be.
 
Long had I borne with envy, hate, and sorrow,
  Weary and worn, by many a tempest tried;        10
I dreamed of peace and of a bright to-morrow,
  And lo! my pathway led me to thy side.
I longed within thine arms to rest; then, risen
  In strength and gladness, give my life to thee:
    May God protect thee! ’twas too fair a vision;        15
      May God protect thee! it was not to be.
 
Winds whirl the leaves, the clouds are driven together,
  Through wood and meadow beats a storm of rain:
To say farewell ’tis just the fitting weather,
  For like the sky, the world seems gray with pain.        20
Yet good nor ill shall shake my heart’s decision;
  Thou slender maid, I still must dream of thee!
    May God protect thee! ’twas too fair a vision;
      May God protect thee! it was not to be.
 
 
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