Josef Freiherr von Eichendorff: “Forest Talk”

Excerpt, “Gems of German Lyrics:  Consisting of Selections from Ruckert, Lenau, Chamisso, Freiligrath and Others.”  Translated into English Verse by Henry D. Wireman.  1869.




It is so late, it cold hath grown,

Why through the woods dost ride alone

So late at night, on such a ride.

I’ll lead thee home, my pretty bride!


“Men’s artful ways are many, pain

My heart hath broken, torn in twain;

The forest horn sounds far and near,

Away! Thou’lt know me but to fear.”


The steed is decked so wondrous fine,

The rider looks so fair, divine;

Protect me, God! I know thee now,

The witch, Oh, Lorelei art thou!


“I am, on cliffs my castle stands,

A view of ‘Father Rhine’ commands.

It is so late, it cold doth grow,

From hence thou nevermore wilt go!”