Front Page Titles (by Subject) ACT V. - Goethe's Works, vol. 2 (Faust 1 & 2, Egmont, Natural Daughter, Sorrows of Young Werther)
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ACT V. - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Goethe’s Works, vol. 2 (Faust 1 & 2, Egmont, Natural Daughter, Sorrows of Young Werther) 
Goethe’s Works, illustrated by the best German artists, 5 vols. (Philadelphia: G. Barrie, 1885). Vol. 2.
Part of: Goethe’s Works, 5 vols.
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(A very aged woman.)
[The husband steps forth.
[He walks forward upon the downs.
[He follows the wanderer. Standing beside him.
In the Garden. The Three at Table.
(To the stranger.) Art thou dumb? No morsel raising
To thy famish’d lips?
He of wonders so amazing
Fain would hear; inform him thou.
There was wrought a wonder truly,
Yet no rest it leaves to me;
Naught in the affair was duly
Done, as honest things should be!
Who as sinful can pronounce it?
’Twas the emperor gave the shore;—
Did the trumpet not announce it
As the herald pass’d our door?
Footing firm they first have planted
Near these downs. Tents, huts, appear’d;
O’er the green, the eye, enchanted,
Saw ere long a palace rear’d.
Shovel, axe, no labor sparing,
Vainly pli’d the men by day;
Where the fires at night shone flaring,
Stood a dam, in morning’s ray.
Still from human victims bleeding,
Wailing sounds were nightly borne;
Seaward sped the flames, receding;
A canal appear’d at morn!
Godless is he, naught respecting;
Covets he our grove, our cot;
Though our neighbor, us subjecting,
Him to serve will be our lot.
Yet he bids, our claims adjusting,
Homestead fair in his new land.
Earth, from water sav’d, mistrusting,
On thine own height take thy stand.
Let us, to the chapel wending,
Watch the sun’s last rays subside;
Let us ring, and prayerful bending,
In our fathers’ God confide!
[Spacious ornamental garden; broad, straight canal.Faustin extreme old age, walking about, meditating.
(Through a speaking-trumpet.) The sun sinks down, the ships belated
Rejoicing to the haven steer.
A stately galley, deeply freighted,
On the canal, now draweth near;
Her chequer’d flag the breeze caresses,
The masts unbending bear the sails;
Thee now the grateful seaman blesses,
Thee at this moment Fortune hails.
[The bell rings on the downs.
(Starting.) Accursed bell! Its clamor sending,
Like spiteful shot it wounds mine ear!
Before me lies my realm unending;
Vexation dogs me in the rear;
For I, these envious chimes still hearing,
Must at my narrow bounds repine;
The linden grove, brown hut thence peering,
The moldering church, these are not mine.
Refreshment seek I, there repairing?
Another’s shadow chills my heart,
A thorn, nor foot nor vision sparing,—
O far from hence could I depart!
(As above.) How, wafted by the evening gales,
Blithely the painted galley sails;
On its swift course, how richly stor’d!
Chest, coffer, sack, are heap’d aboard.
A Splendid Galley.
Richly and brilliantly laden with the produce of foreign climes.
Mephistopheles. The Three Mighty Comrades.
[They disembark. The goods are taken ashore.Mephis. So have we prov’d our worth—content
If we our patron’s praises earn:
With but two ships abroad we went,
With twenty we to port return.
By our rich lading all may see
The great successes we have wrought.
Free ocean makes the spirit free:
There claims compunction ne’er a thought!
A rapid grip there needs alone;
A fish, a ship, on both we seize.
Of three if we the lordship own,
Straightway we hook a fourth with ease,
Then is the fifth in sorry plight—
Who hath the power, has still the right;
The What is ask’d for, not the How.
Else know I not the seaman’s art:
War, commerce, piracy, I trow,
A trinity, we may not part.
The Three Mighty Comrades.
The Three Mighty Comrades.
[The cargo is removed.
(ToFaust.) With gloomy look, with earnest brow
Thy fortune high receivest thou.
Thy lofty wisdom has been crown’d;
Their limits shore and sea have found;
Forth from the shore, in swift career,
O’er the glad waves, thy vessels steer;
Speak only from thy pride of place,
Thine arm the whole world doth embrace.
Here it began; on this spot stood
The first rude cabin form’d of wood;
A little ditch was sunk of yore
Where plashes now the busy oar.
Thy lofty thought, thy people’s hand,
Have won the prize from sea and land.
From here too—
That accursed here!
It weighs upon me! Lend thine ear;—
To thine experience I must tell,
With thrust on thrust, what wounds my heart;
To bear it is impossible—
Nor can I, without shame, impart:
The old folk there above must yield;
Would that my seat those lindens were;
Those few trees not mine own, that field,
Possession of the world impair.
There I, wide view o’er all to take,
From bough to bough would scaffolds raise;
Would, for the prospect, vistas make,
On all that I have done to gaze;
To see at once before me brought
The masterwork of human thought,
Where wisdom hath achiev’d the plan,
And won broad dwelling-place for man.—
Thus are we tortur’d;—in our weal,
That which we lack, we sorely feel!
The chime, the scent of linden bloom,
Surround me like a vaulted tomb.
The will that nothing could withstand,
Is broken here upon the sand:
How from the vexing thought be safe?
The bell is pealing, and I chafe!
Such spiteful chance, ’tis natural,
Must thy existence fill with gall.
Who doubts it! To each noble ear,
This clanging odious must appear;
This cursed ding-dong, booming loud,
The cheerful evening sky doth shroud;
With each event of life it blends,
From birth to burial it attends,
Until this mortal life doth seem,
Twixt ding and dong, a vanish’d dream!
Resistance, stubborn selfishness,
Can trouble lordliest success,
Till, in deep angry pain one must
Grow tired at last of being first!
Why let thyself be troubl’d here?
Is colonizing not thy sphere?
Then go, to move them be thy care!
Thou knowest well the homestead fair,
I’ve chosen for the aged pair—
We’ll bear them off, and on new ground
Set them, ere one can look around.
The violence outliv’d and past,
Shall a fair home atone at last.
[He whistles shrilly.
Come! straight fulfil the lord’s behest;
The fleet to-morrow he will feast.
The old lord us did ill requite;
A sumptuous feast is ours by right.
(To the spectators.) What happ’d of old, here happens too:
Still Naboth’s vineyard meets the view.
[1 Kings xvi.
(On the watch-tower, singing.) Keen vision my birth-dower,
[Long pause. Song.
(On the balcony, towards the downs.)
From above what plaintive whimper?
Word and tone are here too late!
Wails my warder; me, in spirit
Grieves this deed precipitate!
Though in ruin unexpected
Charr’d now lie the lindens old,
Soon a height will be erected,
Whence the boundless to behold.
I the home shall see, enfolding
In its walls, that ancient pair,
Who, my gracious care beholding,
Shall their lives end joyful there.
Hither we come full speed. We crave
Your pardon! Things have not gone right!
Full many a knock and kick we gave,
They open’d not, in our despite;
Then rattl’d we and kick’d the more,
And prostrate lay the rotten door;
We call’d aloud with threat severe,
Yet sooth we found no listening ear.
And as in such case still befalls,
They heard not, would not hear our calls;
Forthwith thy mandate we obey’d,
And straight for thee a clearance made.
The pair—their sufferings were light,
Fainting they sank, and died of fright.
A stranger, harbor’d there, made show
Of force, full soon was he laid low;
In the brief space of this wild fray,
From coals, that strewn around us lay,
The straw caught fire; ’tis blazing free,
As funeral death-pyre for the three.
To my commandments deaf were ye!
Exchange I wish’d, not robbery.
For this your wild and ruthless part;—
I curse it! Share it and depart!
The ancient saw still rings to-day:
Force with a willing mind obey;
If boldly thou canst stand the test,
Stake house, court, life, and all the rest!
The stars their glance and radiance veil;
Smoulders the sinking fire, a gale
Fans it with moisture-laden wings,
Vapor to me and smoke it brings.
Rash mandate—rashly too obey’d!—
What hither sweeps like spectral shade?
Midnight.Four gray women enter.
My name, it is Want.
And mine, it is Blame.
My name, it is Care.
Need, that is my name.
(Together.) The door is fastbolted, we cannot get in;
The owner is wealthy, we may not within.
There fade I to shadow.
There cease I to be.
His visage the pamper’d still turneth from me.
Ye sisters, ye cannot, ye dare not go in;
But Care through the keyhole an entrance may win.
Sisters, gray sisters, away let us glide!
I bind myself to thee, quite close to thy side.
And Need at your heels doth with yours blend her breath.*
Fast gather the clouds, they eclipse star on star.
Behind there, behind, from afar, from afar,
There comes he, our brother, there cometh he—Death.
(In the palace.) Four saw I come, but only three went hence.
Of their discourse I could not catch the sense;
There fell upon mine ear a sound like breath,
Thereon a gloomy rhyme-word follow’d—Death;
Hollow the sound, with spectral horror fraught!
Not yet have I, in sooth, my freedom wrought;
Could I my pathway but from magic free,
And quite unlearn the spells of sorcery,
Stood I, oh, nature, man alone ’fore thee,
Then were it worth the trouble man to be!
Such was I once, ere I in darkness sought,
And curses dire, through words with error fraught,
Upon myself and on the world have brought;
So teems the air with falsehood’s juggling brood,
That no one knows how them he may elude!
If but one day shines clear, in reason’s light—
In spectral dream envelops us the night;
From the fresh fields, as homeward we advance—
There croaks a bird: what croaks he? some mischance!
Ensnar’d by superstition, soon and late;
As sign and portent, it on us doth wait—
By fear unmann’d, we take our stand alone;
The portal creaks, and no one enters,—none.
Is some one here?
The question prompteth, yes!
What art thou then?
Here, once for all, am I.
My proper place is this.
(First angry, then appeased. Aside.) Take heed, and speak no word of sorcery.
I have but hurried through the world, I own.
I by the hair each pleasure seiz’d;
Relinquish’d what no longer pleas’d,
That which escap’d me I let go,
I’ve crav’d, accomplish’d, and then crav’d again;
Thus through my life I’ve storm’d—with might and main,
Grandly, with power, at first; but now, indeed,
It goes more cautiously, with wiser heed.
I know enough of earth, enough of men;
The view beyond is barr’d from mortal ken;
Fool, who would yonder peer with blinking eyes,
And of his fellows dream above the skies!
Firm let him stand, the prospect round him scan,
Not mute the world to the true-hearted man.
Why need he wander through eternity?
What he can grasp, that only knoweth he.
So let him roam adown earth’s fleeting day;
If spirits haunt, let him pursue his way;
In joy or torment ever onward stride,
Though every moment still unsatisfied!
Forbear! Thou shalt not come near me!
I will not hear such folly. Hence!
Avaunt! This evil litany
The wisest even might bereave of sense.
Unblessed spectres! Ye mankind have so
Treated a thousand times, their thoughts deranging;
E’en uneventful days to mar ye know,
Into a tangl’d web of torment changing!
’Tis hard, I know, from demons to get free,
The mighty spirit-bond by force untying;
Yet Care, I never will acknowledge thee,
Thy strong increeping, potency defying.
[She breathes on him.
(Blind.) Deeper and deeper night is round me sinking;
Only within me shines a radiant light.
I haste to realize, in act, my thinking;
The master’s word, that only giveth might.
Up, vassals, from your couch! my project bold,
Grandly completed, now let all behold!
Seize ye your tools; your spades, your shovels ply;
The work laid down, accomplish instantly!
Strict rule, swift diligence,—these twain
The richest recompense obtain.
Completion of the greatest work demands
One guiding spirit for a thousand hands.
Great Fore-Court of the Palace.
(An overseer leading the way.)
No artist-toil we need to-day;
Sufficeth your own measure here:
At his full length the tallest let him lay!
Ye others round him straight the turf uprear;
As for our sires was done of yore,
An oblong square delve ye once more.
Out of the palace to the narrow home—
So at the last the sorry end must come!
(Digging, with mocking gestures.)
(Comes forth from the palace, groping his way by the door-posts.)
How doth the clang of spades delight my soul!
For me my vassals toil, the while
Earth with itself they reconcile,
The waves within their bounds control,
And gird the sea with steadfast zone—
(Aside.) And yet for us dost work alone,
While thou for dam and bulwark carest;
Since thus for Neptune thou prepares,
The water-fiend, a mighty fête;
Before thee naught but ruin lies;
The elements are our allies;
Onward destruction strides elate.
As many as you may,
Bring crowds on crowds to labor here;
Them by reward and rigor cheer;
Persuade, entice, give ample pay!
Each day be tidings brought me at what rate
The moat extends which here we excavate.
(Half aloud.) They speak, as if to me they gave
Report, not of a moat—but of a grave.*
A marsh along the mountain chain
Infecteth what’s already won;
Also the noisome pool to drain—
My last best triumph then were won:
To many millions space I thus should give,
Though not secure, yet free to toil and live;
Green fields and fertile; men, with cattle blent,
Upon the newest earth would dwell content,
Settled forthwith upon the firm-bas’d hill,
Uplifted by a valiant people’s skill;
Within, a land like Paradise; outside,
E’en to the brink, roars the impetuous tide,
And as it gnaws, striving to enter there,
All haste, combin’d, the damage to repair.
Yea, to this thought I cling, with virtue rife,
Wisdom’s last fruit, profoundly true:
Freedom alone he earns as well as life,
Who day by day must conquer them anew.
So girt by danger, childhood bravely here,
Youth, manhood, age, shall dwell from year to year;
Such busy crowds I fain would see,
Upon free soil stand with a people free;
Then to the moment might I say:
Linger awhile, so fair thou art!
Nor can the traces of my earthly day
Through ages from the world depart!
In the presentiment of such high bliss,
The highest moment I enjoy—’tis this.
[Faustsinks back, theLemureslay hold of him and lay him upon the ground.
Him could no pleasure sate, no joys appease,
So woo’d he ever changeful phantasies;
The last worst empty moment to retain,
E’en to the last, the sorry wretch was fain.
Me who so stoutly did withstand—
Time conquers,—lies the old man on the sand!
The clock stands still—
Stands still, no sound is heard;
The index falls—
It falls, ’tis finish’d now.
Yes, it is past!
Past, ’tis a stupid word.
Past and pure nothingness are one, I trow.
Of what avail creation’s ceaseless play?
Created things forthwith to sweep away?
“There, now ’tis past.”—’Tis past, what may it mean?
It is as good as if it ne’er had been,
And yet as if it Being did possess,
Still in a circle it doth ceaseless press:
I should prefer the Eternal—Emptiness.
(Solo.) Who hath the house so badly built,
With shovel and with spade?
(In chorus.) For thee, sad guest, in hempen vest,
’Tis all too deftly made.
(Solo.) Who furnish’d hath so ill the place?
Chair, table, where are they?
(In chorus.) Short was the let; there came apace
New claimants, day by day.
There lies the body, would the spirit flee,
I’d show him speedily the blood-sign’d scroll—
Yet they’ve so many methods, woe is me,
To cheat the devil now of many a soul!
On the old way one is not sure;
Upon the new we’re not commended;
Else had I done it unattended;
Assistants must I now procure.
In all things we’re in evil plight!
Transmitted usage, ancient right—
In these the time for confidence is past.
With the last breath once sped the soul away;
And like the nimblest mouse, I watch’d my prey;
Snap! Lock’d within my claws I held it fast;
Now she delays, nor will the dismal cell,
The loathsome body, leave, though reft of life,
The elements, in ceaseless strife,
Her, in the end, disgracefully expel.
For days and hours I’ve plagu’d myself ere now;—
Abides the sorry question;—when? where? how?
Old death has lost his power, once swift and strong;
If dead or no? in doubt we tarry long;
On rigid members oft I’ve lustful gaz’d;
’Twas but a feint, it stirr’d, once more itself uprais’d!
[Fantastic gestures of conjuration.
Come swiftly on! Double your speed; no pause!
Lords of the straight, lords of the crooked horn!
Chips of the ancient block, true devils born,
Hither bring ye forthwith Hell’s murky jaws.
Hell, to be sure, full many jaws may claim;
Which gape as rank enjoins, and dignity;
But we however in this final game,
Not so particular henceforth will be.
[The ghastly jaws of Hell open on the left.
Clatter the corner-teeth; the fire-stream whirling,
The vault’s abyss doth overflow,
And through the background-smoke upcurling
The town of flame I see in endless glow;
Up to the very teeth the ruddy billow dashes;
The damn’d, salvation hoping, swim amain,
Them in his jaws the huge hyena crashes,
Then they retrace their path of fiery pain.
In nooks fresh horrors lurk to scare the sight,
In narrowest space supremest agony:
Full well ye do, thus sinners to affright,
They hold it but for dream, deceit and lie.
(To the stout devils, with short straight horns.)
Now, paunchy slaves, with cheeks that hotly burn,
On hellish brimstone richly fed, ye glow,
Clumsy and short, with necks that never turn—
For gleam like phosphor-light, watch here below:
It is the soul, Psyche, with soaring wing;
The wings pluck off, so ’tis a sorry worm.
First with my seal I’ll stamp the ugly thing,
Then off with it to fiery-whirling storm!
Mark ye the lower regions duly,
Ye bladders! ’tis your duty so!
If there she likes to harbor,—truly,
We cannot accurately know;
She in the navel loves to bide:
Take heed, lest from you thence away she glide!
(To the lean devils, with long crooked horns.)
Buffoons, ye fuglemen, a giant crew,
Grasp in the air, still clutch without repose,
With outstretch’d arms, claws sharp and pliant too,
The fluttering, fleeing creature to enclose!
In her old home she rests uneasily,
Genius aspires, it fain would soar on high.
[Glory from above, on the right.
The Heavenly Host.
Discordant tones I hear, an odious noise
Comes with unwelcome daylight from above:
A mawkish whimper, fit for girls and boys,
Such as a canting taste doth still approve.
Ye know how we, in hours with curses fraught,
Plann’d the destruction of the human race:
The most atrocious product of our thought
In their devotion finds a fitting place.
They come, the fools, in hypocritic guise!
Full many a soul from us they’ve snatch’d away—
With our own weapons warring ’gainst us, they
Are devils also, only in disguise.
Here your defeat eternal shame would bring;
On to the grave, and to the margin cling!
Chorus of Angels.
(To the Satans.) Why duck and shrink? Is this hell’s wonted way?
Stand firm, and let them scatter to and fro.
Back to his place each fool! Imagine they,
Forsooth, with such a pretty flowery show,
To cover the hot devils, as with snow?
They’ll shrink and shrivel where your breathings play.
Blow now, ye Blowers! Hold! not quite so fast!
Pales the whole bevy ’neath your fiery blast.
Not quite so fiercely! Mouth and nostril close!
Your breathing now too strongly blows.
O that ye never the just mean will learn!
That shrivels not alone, ’twill scorch and burn.
Floating they come, with poisonous flames and clear;
Stand firm against them, press together here!—
Force is extinguish’d, courage all is spent;
A strange alluring glow the devils scene.
[Striking aside the hovering roses.
Off, will-o’-the-wisp! How bright soe’er thy ray,
Captur’d, thou’rt but an odious, pulpy thing;
Why flutterest? Wilt vanish, straight away!—
Like pitch and brimstone to my neck dost cling?
I’m all aflame, head, heart and liver burn—
An over-devilish element,
Than hellish fire more sharp by far!
Hence ye so mightily lament,
Unhappy lovers, who, when scorn’d ye are,
After your sweethearts still your necks must turn.
Thus too with me, what draws my head aside?
Them have I not to deadly war defi’d?
My fiercest hate their aspect wak’d of yore;
Hath something alien pierc’d me through and through?
These gracious youths, them am I fain to view!—
What now restrains me that I curse no more?
And if befool’d I now should be,
Who may henceforth “the fool” be styl’d?—
The rascals, whom I hate, for me
Too lovely are, I fairly am beguil’d!
Sweet children, tell me, to the race
Belong ye not of Lucifer?
So fair ye seem, you I would fain embrace!
At the right moment ye appear;
So pleasant ’tis, so natural, as though
I you had seen a thousand times before,
So lustfully alluring now ye show.
With every look your beauty charms me more!
O nearer come! O grant me but one glance!
We come, why dost thou shrink as we advance?
So, if thou canst, abide; go not away.
[The angels hover round, and occupy the entire space.
(Who is pressed into the proscenium.) As spirits damn’d we’re blam’d by you—
Yourselves are yet the sorcerers true,
For man and maid ye lead astray.—
A curs’d adventure this I trow!
Is this love’s element? My frame
In fire is plung’d, I scarcely now
Feel on my neck the scorching flame!—
Ye hover to and fro; with pinions furl’d
Float downward, after fashion of the world
Move your sweet limbs; in sooth that earnest style
Becomes you; yet, for once, I fain would see you smile;
That were for me a rapture unsurpass’d,—
A glance, I mean, like that which lovers cast:
A slight turn of the mouth, so is it done.—
Thee, tall and stately youth, most dearly thee I prize;
But ill beseemeth thee that priestly guise,
Give me one loving glance, I crave but one!
Ye might, with decency, less cloth’d appear,
O’er modest in such lengthen’d drapery.—
They wheel around, to see them in the rear!
All too enticing are the rogues for me!
Chorus of Angels.
(Collecting himself.) How is’t with me? The man entire, like Job,
Must loathe himself, cleft through with boil on boil,—
Yet triumphs too, after the first recoil,
If he his inward nature fairly probe,
And in himself confides and in his kin:
Sav’d are the noble devil parts within.
This love attack he casts upon the skin,—
Burnt out already are the cursed flames,
And, one and all, I curse you, as the occasion claims!
Chorus of Angels.
[They rise, bearing with them the immortal part ofFaust.
(Looking around.) How is it? Whither are they gone?
Me have ye cozen’d, young things though ye be!
They with their booty now are heavenward flown.
Therefore they nibbl’d at this grave! From me
A great rare prize they’ve captur’d: the high soul,
That pledg’d itself to me with written scroll,—
This have they filch’d away, right cunningly!
From whom shall I now seek redress?
Who can secure my well-earn’d right?
In thine old days thou’rt cheated! Yet confess,
Thou hast deserv’d it, art in sorry plight;
Mismanag’d have I in disgraceful sort,
Vast outlay shamefully away have thrown;
The devil’s sense, though season’d well, the sport
Of common lust!—a love absurd I own.
And if the shrewd old devil chose
Himself to busy with this childish freak,
Not small the foolishness, the truth to speak,
Which him hath thus o’ermaster’d at the close.
Mountain Defiles, Forest, Rock, Wilderness.
Holy anchorites, dispersed up the hill, stationed among the clefts.
(Floating up and down.)
As the rock-chasm, sheer descending,
On chasm resteth more profound,
As thousand sparkling streamlets blending,
Foam in the torrent’s headlong bound;
As soars, the realm of air invading,
The stem, impell’d by inward strain;
So love, almighty, all-pervading,
Doth all things mould, doth all sustain.
A roaring that the heart appalleth
Sounds as if shook the wood-crown’d steep;
Yet, lovely in its plashing, falleth
The wealth of water to the deep,
Refreshment to the valley bearing;
The atmosphere, with poison fraught,
The lightning cleareth, wildly flaring,
Whose deadly flash dire ruin brought—
Love’s heralds these, His purpose telling
Who, ever-working, us surrounds.
Come, holy fire, within me dwelling,
Where, tortur’d in the senses’ bounds,
Fetters of pain my soul enclosing,
Hold it immur’d in rayless gloom!
O God, my troubl’d thoughts composing,
My needy heart do thou illume!
Through the pine trees’ waving tresses,
What bright cloud floats high and higher?
What it shrouds my spirit guesses!
Soars from earth and youthful choir.
Chorus of Blessed Boys.
Whither, father, are we hieing?
Tell us, kind one, who are we?
Happy are we, upward flying;
Unto all ’tis bliss to be!
Boys, ere soul or sense could waken,
Ye were born at midnight hour;
From your parents straightway taken,
For the angels a sweet dower.
You a loving one embraces,
This ye feel: then hither fare!
But of earth’s rude paths no traces,
Blessed ones, your spirits bear.
In the organ now descending
Of my worldly, earth-born, eyes;
Use them, thus thy need befriending—
View the sphere that round you lies:
[He takes them into himself.
There are trees; there rocks upsoaring;
Headlong there the flood doth leap;
Cleaves the torrent, loudly roaring,
Shorter passage to the deep.
(From within.) Grand the scene, but fear awaking:—
Desolate the spot and drear,
Us with dread and horror shaking.
Hold us not, kind father, here!
Rise to higher spheres, and higher!
Unobserv’d your growth, yet sure,
As God’s presence doth inspire
Strength, by laws eternal, pure.
This the spirit’s nurture, stealing
Through the ether’s depths profound:
Love eternal, self-revealing,
Sheds beatitude around.
Chorus of Blessed Boys.
(Circling round the highest summit.)
(Hovering in the higher atmosphere, bearing the immortal part ofFaust.)
The Younger Angels.
Roses, from fair hands descending,
Holy, penitent and pure,
Our high mission gladly ending,
Help’d our conquest to secure,
Making ours this spirit-treasure.
Demons shrank, in sore displeasure,
Devils fled, as we assail’d them,
Hell’s accustom’d torture fail’d them,
They by pangs of love were riven;
The old Satan-master even,
Pierced was by sharp annoyance.
Conquer’d have we! shout with joyance!
The More Perfect Angels.
The Younger Angels.
(In the highest, purest cell.)
In thy tent of azure hue,
Queen supremely reigning,
Let me now thy secret view,
Vision high obtaining!
With the holy joy of love,
In man’s breast, whatever
Lifts the soul to thee above,
Kind one, foster ever!
All invincible we feel,
If our arm thou claimest;
Suddenly assuag’d our zeal
If our breast thou tamest.
Virgin, pure from taint of earth,
Mother, we adore thee,
With the Godhead one by birth,
Queen, we bow before thee!
Passionless and pure, from thee
Hath it not been taken,
That poor frail ones may to thee
Come, with trust unshaken.
In their weakness snatch’d away,
Hard it is to save them;
By their own strength rend who may
Fetters that enslave them!
Glide on slippery ground the feet
Swiftly downward sailing!
Whom befool not glances sweet,
Flattery’s breath inhaling!
[Mater Gloriosasoars forward.
Chorus of Female Penitents.
[St. Luke vii. 36.
By the love, warm tears outpouring,
Laving as with balsam sweet,
Pharisaic sneers ignoring,
Of thy godlike Son the feet;
By the vase, rich odor breathing,
Lavishing its costly store;
By the locks, that gently wreathing,
Dried his holy feet once more—
(St. John iv.)
By the well, whereto were driven
Abram’s flocks in ancient days;
By the cooling draught thence given,
Which the Saviour’s thirst allays;
By the fountain, still outsending
Thence its waters, far and wide,
Through all worlds it pours its tide—
By the hallow’d grave, whose portal
Clos’d upon the Lord of yore;
By the arm, unseen by mortal,
Back which thrust me from the door;
By my penance, slowly fleeting,
Forty years amid the waste;
By the blessed farewell greeting,
Which upon the sand I trac’d—
Thou, unto the greatly sinning,
Access who dost not deny,
By sincere repentance winning
Bliss throughout eternity,
So from this good soul, thy blessing,
Who but once itself forgot,
Sin who knew not, while transgressing,
Gracious One, withhold thou not!
(Formerly namedGretchen,pressing towards her.)
(They approach, hovering in a circle.)
Encircl’d by the choirs of heaven,
Scarcely himself the stranger knows;
Scarce feels the existence newly given,
So like the heavenly host he grows.
See, how he every band hath riven!
From earth’s old vesture freed at length,
Now cloth’d upon by garb of heaven,
Shines forth his pristine youthful strength,
To guide him, be it given to me;
Still dazzles him the new-born day.
Ascend, thine influence feeleth he,
He’ll follow on thine upward way.
(Adoring, prostrate on his face.)
The Scene is laid in Brussels.
[* ]Noth and Tod, the German equivalents for Need and Death, form a rhyme. As this cannot be rendered in English, I have introduced a slight alteration into my translation.
[* ]The play of words contained in the original cannot be reproduced in translation, the German for moat being Graben, and for grave Grab.