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Classic Love Poems: Goethe

  Goethe - Restless Love
  Goethe - Longing
  Goethe - Night Thoughts
  Goethe - The Bliss of Sorrow
  Goethe - In Summer
  Goethe - Love's Distresses

Goethe - Restless Love

 
THROUGH rain, through snow,
Through tempest go!
'Mongst streaming caves,
O'er misty waves,
On, on! still on!
Peace, rest have flown!

Sooner through sadness

I'd wish to be slain,
Than all the gladness

Of life to sustain
All the fond yearning

That heart feels for heart,
Only seems burning

To make them both smart.

How shall I fly?
Forestwards hie?
Vain were all strife!
Bright crown of life.
Turbulent bliss,--
Love, thou art this!

Goethe - Longing

 
What pulls at my heart so?

What tells me to roam?
What drags me and lures me

From chamber and home?
How round the cliffs gather

The clouds high in air!
I fain would go thither,

I fain would be there!

The sociable flight

Of the ravens comes back;
I mingle amongst them,

And follow their track.
Round wall and round mountain

Together we fly;
She tarries below there,

I after her spy.
Then onward she wanders,

My flight I wing soon
To the wood fill'd with bushes,

A bird of sweet tune.
She tarries and hearkens,

And smiling, thinks she:
"How sweetly he's singing!

He's singing to me!"

The heights are illum'd

By the fast setting sun;
The pensive fair maiden

Looks thoughtfully on;
She roams by the streamlet,

O'er meadows she goes,
And darker and darker

The pathway fast grows.

I rise on a sudden,

A glimmering star;
"What glitters above me,

So near and so far?"
And when thou with wonder

Hast gazed on the light,
I fall down before thee,

Entranced by thy sight!

Goethe - Night Thoughts

 
Oh, unhappy stars! Your fate I mourn,

Ye by whom the sea-toss'd sailor's lighted,
Who with radiant beams the heav'ns adorn,

But by gods and men are unrequited:
For ye love not,--ne'er have learnt to love!
Ceaselessly in endless dance ye move,
In the spacious sky your charms displaying,

What far travels ye have hasten'd through,
Since, within my loved one's arms delaying,

I've forgotten you and midnight too!

Goethe - The Bliss of Sorrow

 
NEVER dry, never dry,

Tears that eternal love sheddeth!
How dreary, how dead doth the world still appear,
When only half-dried on the eye is the tear!

Never dry, never dry,

Tears that unhappy love sheddeth!

Goethe - In Summer

 
How plain and height
With dewdrops are bright!
How pearls have crown'd
The plants all around!
How sighs the breeze
Thro' thicket and trees!
How loudly in the sun's clear rays
The sweet birds carol forth their lays!

But, ah! above,
Where saw I my love,
Within her room,
Small, mantled in gloom,
Enclosed around,
Where sunlight was drown'd,
How little there was earth to me,
With all its beauteous majesty!

Goethe - Love's Distresses

 

Who will hear me? Whom shall I lament to?
Who would pity me that heard my sorrows?
Ah, the lip that erst so many raptures
Used to taste, and used to give responsive,
Now is cloven, and it pains me sorely;
And it is not thus severely wounded
By my mistress having caught me fiercely,
And then gently bitten me, intending
To secure her friend more firmly to her:
No, my tender lip is crack'd thus, only
By the winds, o'er rime and frost proceeding,
Pointed, sharp, unloving, having met me.
Now the noble grape's bright juice commingled
With the bee's sweet juice, upon the fire
Of my hearth, shall ease me of my torment.
Ah, what use will all this be, if with it
Love adds not a drop of his own balsam?


Love Poems

Alexander Pushkin
Ben Jonson
Carl Sandburg
Dante Alighieri
D. H. Lawrence
Edgar Allen Poe
E.E. Cummings
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Emily Dickinson
Goethe
Lord Byron
Oscar Wilde
Pablo Neruda
Percy Bysshe Shelley
Robert Browning
Robert Herrick
Robert Frost
Walter Savage Landor
William Shakespeare


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