Schack von Staffeldt

The tiresome winter now is gone - Poem by Schack von Staffeldt

The tiresome winter now is gone
The day so short, the night so long
At gentle pace
Do change their face,
Now must dark clouds and winds that bite - take flight;
The fireplace stands alone, unstacked,
And each day's cold by shakes is racked;
The fleece-lined coat and doublet warm
Are hung away and held to scorn,
The muff is likewise out of kind - and mind;
One fears no more that snow and sleet
On going out one then will meet;
So let us rise
And now apprize
How sweetly nature does beguile - and smile.

Oh see, how richly dressed the sun
With gold-tressed hair its course does run
Its ring of fire
Can but inspire
All things that now accrue - anew;
The blue sky up above so clear
Is worth a gaze, both far and near;
See all the birds in mighty squalls,
That fill the air's wide summer halls,
Their joy they constantly prolong - in song;
They daily two by two compete
To make their nesting-place complete,
Look, past one streaks
With twig in beak,
Another culls small hairs and straws - then soars.

Oh see! the fields are looking well
The farmer, though the whole world's thrall,
Now smiles to see
His slavery
Will end in their increase - in peace,
The lambs at random play and leap,
And frolic mongst the meadow's sheep,
They kneel with joyful heart at rest
And suckle at their mother's breast,
By every single dropp refreshed - afresh.
The shepherd there guards flock and corn;
A dog's sharp bark, a call of horn,
Are all his art,
Though all in part;
How sweetly do the woods reply - nearby.

Oh see, a sight most passing fair
At wood's green eyelids over there
Each tall tree crest
Is being dressed,
And spring decks out the beech with pride - as bride.
So when the sun burns like a torch,
And breast and lap does almost scorch,
Behind each leaf is refuge found
When weary heads seek sheltered ground.
Here tea refreshes, as does wine - from Rhine,
And meanwhile one may gaze intent
At what is nature's parliament,
The birds rejoice
With well-tuned voice,
The agile beasts will nimbly dance - and prance.

Oh see, how mirror-smooth and clear
The lake is fashioned over here,
It almost seems
The sun most dreams
Of gazing at its visage fair - down there,
The fish once caught in filth and mire
That frost and net could not acquire,
Now feels the urge to live and breed
And freely sports midst rush and reed,
See here, how proudly fins now flash - and splash.
The frog now croaks its serenade
When drowsy day begins to fade,
With blade of grass
I watch time pass
And end my walk that took so long - in song.

So do the water, sky and earth
By my Creator gain rebirth,
I roamed among
World's mighty throng,
God's providence will pass by none - not one.
Oh troubled soul! Will you just look
And see all things are in His book,
Whate'er befalls, I know full well
That I among them all may dwell,
God is still mindful of my need - indeed,
He's sure to find the perfect time
When heaven's bells will peel and chime;
It could just be
I too may see
My winter will as spring appear - this year.

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Poem Submitted: Friday, June 22, 2012

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