Sunday 1 September 2019

HCA in his mid-20s - a poem to the ladies

Avis aux lectrices

Und wenn Du schiltst und wenn Du tobst,
Ich werd’ es geduldig leiden;
Doch wenn Du meine Werke’ nicht lobst,
Laß ich mich von dir scheiden.
H. Heine

I’m lacking something! – shall I state it clearly?
It’s common and comes hardly as a shock;
I’m lacking – yes – a young girl to love dearly –
Ah, heav’ns above! I’m now a laughing stock!
Should I then ne’er dare love, sweet dreams be tending?
What? Am I then not old enough for such?
God knows, I’d not a soul e’er be offending,
No, great affection’s what I crave so much!

For every poet, even folk most lowly
Have their own sweetheart – what a blessèd boon!
One’s feels so sad, quite faint, sighs come not slowly,
Oh, let me join them, join them very soon.
As yet though I see no one I’m in want of
That from my yearning heart can set me free;
God knows, my poetry I’m greatly fond of,
But, dearest Lord, that’s not enough for me!

No, I must have – ah, words are so deficient –
A sweetheart, shall my heart at last find rest;
A young girl, just a tiny one’s sufficient,
For I have love for two within my breast!
Oh come! keep my sweet hope from e’er decreasing;
For those in love great beauty too beget.
Though all my poems you must praise unceasing,
For I will break things off, should you forget!

“Fantasies and Sketches”, 1831

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