Front Page Titles (by Subject) SCENE V. - Goethe's Works, vol. 3 (Goetz von Berlichingen, Iphigenia in Tauris, Tarquato Tasso, etc)
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SCENE V. - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Goethe’s Works, vol. 3 (Goetz von Berlichingen, Iphigenia in Tauris, Tarquato Tasso, etc) 
Goethe’s Works, illustrated by the best German artists, 5 vols. (Philadelphia: G. Barrie, 1885). Vol. 3.
Part of: Goethe’s Works, 5 vols.
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(Alone.) Ay, go, and in the fond assurance go,
That thou hast power to bend me to thy will.
I learn dissimulation, for thou art
An able master, and I prompt to learn.
Thus life full oft compels us to appear,
Yea, e’en to be like those, whom in our hearts
We haughtily despise. How clearly now
I see the subtle web of court intrigue!
Antonio desires to drive me hence,
Yet would not seem to drive me. He doth play
The kind, considerate friend, that I may seem
Incapable and weak; installs himself
My guardian too, degrading to a child,
Him whom he could not bend to be a slave.
With clouds of error thus he darkens truth,
And blinds alike the princess and the prince.
They should indeed retain me, so he counsels,
For with fair talents Nature has endow’d me;
Although, alas, she has accompanied
Her lofty gifts with many weaknesses,
With a foreboding spirit, boundless pride,
And sensibility too exquisite.
It cannot now be otherwise, since Fate,
In her caprice, has fashion’d such a man;
We must consent to take him as he is,
Be patient, bear with him, and then, perchance,
On days auspicious, as an unsought good,
Find pleasure in his joy-diffusing gift;
While for the rest, why e’en as he was born,
He must have license both to live and die.
Where now Alphonso’s firm and constant mind?
The man who braves his foe, who shields his friend,
In him who treats me thus can I discover?
Now I discern the measure of my woe!
This is my destiny,—towards me alone
All change their nature,—ay, the very men,
Who are with others steadfast, firm and true,
In one brief moment, for an idle breath,
Swerve lightly from their constant quality.
Has not this man’s arrival here, alone,
And in a single hour, my fortune marr’d?
Has he not, even to its very base,
Laid low the structure of my happiness?
This, too, must I endure,—even to-day!
Yea, as before all press’d around me, now
I am by all abandon’d; as before
Each strove to seize, to win me for himself,
All thrust me from them, and avoid me now.
And wherefore? My desert and all the love,
Wherewith I was so bounteously endow’d,
Does he alone in equal balance weigh?
Yes! all forsake me now. Thou too! Thou too!
Beloved princess, thou too leavest me!
Hath she, to cheer me in this dismal hour,
A single token of her favor sent?
Have I deserv’d this from her?—Thou, poor heart,
Whose very nature was to honor her!—
How, when her gentle accents touch’d mine ear,
Feelings unutterable thrill’d my breast!
When she appear’d, a more ethereal light
Outshone the light of day. Her eyes, her lips
Drew me resistlessly, my very knees
Trembled beneath me, and my spirit’s strength
Was all requir’d to hold myself erect
And curb the strong desire to throw myself
Prostrate before her. Scarcely could I quell
The giddy rapture. Be thou firm, my heart
No cloud obscure thee, thou clear mind! She, too,
Dare I pronounce what yet I scarce believe?
I must believe, yet dread to utter it.
She too! She too! Think not the slightest blame,
Only conceal it not. She too! She too!
Alas! This word, whose truth I ought to doubt
Long as a breath of faith sarviv’d in me;
This word, like fate’s decree, doth now at last.
Engrave itself upon the brazen rim
That rounds the full-scroll’d tablet of my woe
Now first, mine enemies are strong indeed;
Forever now I am of strength bereft.
How shall I combat when she stands oppos’d
Amidst the hostile army? How endure
If she no more reach forth her hand to me?
If her kind glance the suppliant meet no more?
Ay, thou hast dar’d to think, to utter it,
And ere thou could’st have fear’d,—behold ’tis true!
And now, ere yet despair, with brazen talons,
Doth rend asunder thy bewilder’d brain,
Lament thy bitter doom, and utter torth
The unavailing cry—She too! She too!