Eine Welt zwar bist du, O Rom; doch ohne die Liebe
Wäre die Welt nicht die Welt, wäre denn Rom auch nicht Rom.—Goethe: Elegy I.
"Maytide in Rome! The air 's a mist of gold,
In rainbow colors are the fountains springing,
The streets are like a garden to behold,
And in my heart a choir of birds are singing.
Haste to thy window, love: I wait for thee.
High o'er the narrow lane our glance may meet,
Our stretched hands all but clasp. Hither to me,
And make the glory of the hour complete.
"No sound, no sign! The bowed blinds are not stirred.
I dare not cry, lest from the common street
Some passing idler catch one sacred word
That's dedicate to her. How may I greet
My love to-day? how may I lure her near?
Ah! I will write my message on her wall
In living sunshine. She shall see and hear:
The silent fire of heaven shall sound my call."
He draws his casement: on the glittering glass
A captured sunbeam flashes sudden flame:
Between her blinds demure he makes it pass:
Its joyous radiance tells her whence it came.
She feels its presence like a fiery kiss;
Mantling her face leaps up the maiden's blood;
She flies to greet him. Oh immortal bliss!
For ever thus is old Rome's youth renewed.