_She_. How soft the night wind strokes the meadow grasses
And, breathing music, through the woodland passes!
Now that the upstart day is dumb,
One hears from the still earth a whispering throng
Of forces animate, with murmured song
Joining the zephyrs' well-attunèd hum.
_He_. I catch the tone from wondrous voices brimming,
Which sensuous on the warm wind drifts to me,
While, streaked with misty light uncertainly,
The very heavens in the glow are swimming.
_She_. The air like woven fabric seems to wave,
Then more transparent and more lustrous groweth;
Meantime a muted melody outgoeth
From happy fairies in their purple cave.
To sphere-wrought harmony
Sing they, and busily
The thread upon their silver spindles floweth.
_He_. Oh lovely night! how effortless and free
O'er samite black-though green by day--thou movest!
And to the whirring music that thou lovest
Thy foot advances imperceptibly.
Thus hour by hour thy step doth measure--
In trancèd self-forgetful pleasure
Thou'rt rapt; creation's soul is rapt with thee! . .
Written by EDUARD MÖRIKE in 1828.
Translation: Charles Wharton Stork
The morning frost shines gray
Along the misty field
Beneath the pallid way
Of early dawn revealed.
Amid the glow one sees
The day-star disappear;
Yet o'er the western trees
The moon is shining clear.
So, too, I send my glance
On distant scenes to dwell;
I see in torturing trance
The night of our farewell.
Blue eyes, a lake of bliss,
Swim dark before my sight,
Thy breath, I feel, thy kiss;
I hear thy whispering light.
My cheek upon thy breast
The streaming tears bedew,
Till, purple-black, is cast
A veil across my view.
The sun comes out; he glows,
And straight my dreams depart,
While from the cliffs he throws
A chill across my heart.