Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock

Translated by C. T. Brooks


HA! there comes he, with sweat, with blood of Romans,

And with dust of the fight all stained! O, never

        Saw I Hermann so lovely!

        Never such fire in his eyes!


Come! I tremble for joy; hand me the Eagle,

And the red, dripping sword! come, breathe, and rest thee;

        Rest thee here in my bosom;

        Rest from the terrible fight!


Rest thee, while from thy brow I wipe the big drops,

And the blood from thy cheek!—that cheek, how glowing!

        Hermann! Hermann! Thusnelda

        Never so loved thee before!


No, not then, when thou first, in old oak-shadows,

With that manly brown arm didst wildly grasp me!

        Spell-bound I read in thy look

        That immortality, then,


Which thou now hast won. Tell to the forests,

Great Augustus, with trembling, amidst his gods now,

        Drinks his nectar; for Hermann,

        Hermann immortal is found!


“Wherefore curl’st thou my hair? Lies not our father

Cold and silent in death? O, had Augustus

        Only headed his army,—

        He should lie bloodier there!”


Let me lift up thy hair; ’t is sinking, Hermann;

Proudly thy locks should curl above the crown now!

        Sigmar is with the immortals!

        Follow, and mourn him no more!

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