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To Belinda

[This song was also written for Lily. Goethe mentions, at the end
of his Autobiography, that he overheard her singing it one
evening after he had taken his last farewell of her.]


WHEREFORE drag me to yon glittering eddy,

With resistless might?
Was I, then, not truly blest already

In the silent night?

In my secret chamber refuge taking,

'Neath the moon's soft ray,
And her awful light around me breaking,

Musing there I lay.

And I dream'd of hours with joy o'erflowing,

Golden, truly blest,
While thine image so beloved was glowing

Deep within my breast.

Now to the card-table hast thou bound me,

'Midst the torches glare?
Whilst unhappy faces are around me,

Dost thou hold me there?

Spring-flow'rs are to me more rapture-giving,

Now conceal'd from view;
Where thou, angel, art, is Nature living,

Love and kindness too.

1775.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe