by: Friedrich Schiller (1759-1805)

      EE, he sitteth on his mat,
      Sitteth there upright
      With the grace with which he sat
      While he saw the light.
      Where is now the sturdy gripe,--
      Where the breath sedate,
      That so lately whiff'd the pipe
      Tow'rd the Spirit Great?
      Where the bright and falcon eye,
      That the reindeer's tread
      On the waving grass could spy,
      Thich with dew-drops spread?
      Where the limbs that used to dart
      Swifter through the snow
      Than the twenty-member'd hart
      Than the mountain roe?
      Where the arm that sturdily
      Bent the deadly bow?
      See, its life hath fleeted by,
      See, it hangeth low!
      Happy he! -- He now has gone
      Where no snow is found:
      Where with maize the fields are sown,
      Self-sprung from the ground;
      Where with birds each bush is fill'd,
      Where with game the wood;
      Where the fish, with joy instill'd,
      Wanton in the flood.
      With the spirits blest he feeds,--
      Leaves us here in gloom;
      We can only praise his deeds,
      And his corpse entomb.
      Farewell-gifts, then, hither bring,
      Sound the death-note sad!
      Bury with him ev'rything
      That can make him glad.
      'Neath his head the hatchet hide
      That he boldly swung;
      And the bear's fat haunch beside,
      For the road is long;
      And the knife, well sharpened
      That, with slashes three,
      Scalp and skin from foeman's head
      Tore off skilfully.
      And to paint his body, place
      Dyes within his hand;
      Let him shine with ruddy grace
      In the Spirit-Land!

"Nadowessian Death-Lament" is reprinted from The Poems of Schiller. Trans. Edgar A. Bowring. New York: Hurst & Company, 1872.




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