Then, with modesty, answer'd the son his impetuous father"Truly my wish was, like yours, to marry one of the daughtersOf our neighbour. We all, in fact, were brought up together,Sported in youthful days near the fountain adjoining the market,And from the rudeness of boys I often managed to save them.But those days have long pass'd the maidens grew up, and with reasonStop now at home and avoid the rougher pastimes of childhood.Well brought up with a vengeance they are! To please you, I sometimesWent to visit them, just for the sake of olden acquaintanceBut I was never much pleased at holding intercourse with them,For they were always finding fault, and I had to bear itFirst my coat was too long, the cloth too coarse, and the colourFar too common, my hair was cut and curl'd very badly.I at last was thinking of dressing myself like the shop-boys,Who are accustom'd on Sundays to show off their persons up yonder,And round whose coats in summer half-silken tatters are hanging.But ere long I discover'd they only intended to fool meThis was very annoying, my pride was offended, but more stillFelt I deeply wounded that they so mistook the good feelingsWhich I cherish'd towards them, especially Minnie, the youngest.Well, I went last Easter, politely to pay them a visit,And I wore the new coat now hanging up in the closet,And was frizzled and curld, like all the rest of the youngsters.When I enter'd, they titter'd; but that didn't very much matter.Minnie sat at the piano, the father was present amongst them,Pleased with his daughter's singing, and quite in a jocular humour.Little could I understand of the words in the song she was singing,But I constantly heard of Pamina, and then of Tamino,*
Now once moreUp the toilsome ascentHasten, panting for breath!Up, then, nor idle be,--Striving and hoping, up, up!
Many a crystal palace built,
Thou claim'st, and rightly claim'st, for only thee;He too is wholly thine; since doomed to rove
In bushes, in the field,Within the wall, in caves,
From his forefathers brave
From his forefathers brave
"Oh, burning flames! quick, swallow me!"There lies he in the fiery waves,
Broader now the stream rolls on,
Twice can this be?What! shall I hear it,And not have spiritTo ease her pains?
Thereupon the worthy pastor smilingly answer'd"What kind of wisdom could have extracted the charming confessionOf this good maiden, and so have reveal'd all her character to us?Is not your care converted at once to pleasure and rapture?Speak out, then, for yourself! Why need explanations from othersHermann then stepped forward, and gently address'd her as follows"Do not repent of your tears, nor yet of your passing affliction;For they perfect my happiness; yours too, I fain would consider.I came not to the fountain, to hire so noble a maidenAs a servant, I came to seek to win you affections.But, alas! my timid gaze had not strength to discoverYour heart's leanings; it saw in your eye but a friendly expression,When you greeted it out of the tranquil fountain's bright mirror.Merely to bring you home, made half of my happiness certainBut you now make it complete! May every blessing be yours, then!"Then the maiden look'd on the youth with heartfelt emotion,And avoided not kiss or embrace, the summit of rapture,When they also are to the loving the long-wish'd-for pledgesOf approaching bliss in a life which now seems to them endless.Then the pastor told the others the whole of the story;But the maiden came and gracefully bent o'er the father,Kissing the while his hand, which he to draw back attempted.And she said:--" I am sure that you will forgive the surprised one,First for her tears of sorrow, and then for her tears of true rapture.O forgive the emotions by which they both have been prompted,And let me fully enjoy the bliss that has now been vouchsafed me!Let the first vexation, which my confusion gave rise to,Also be the last! The loving service which latelyWas by the servant promised, shall now by the daughter be render'd."
While the bird with circumspection
Hurrah!But then I lost all joy and health,
Be there to us confess'd!