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Poems of Goethe

JOY AND SORROW.

As a fisher-boy I fared

To the black rock in the sea,
And, while false gifts I prepared.

Listen'd and sang merrily,
Down descended the decoy,

Soon a fish attack'd the bait;
One exultant shout of joy,--

And the fish was captured straight.

Ah! on shore, and to the wood

Past the cliffs, o'er stock and stone,
One foot's traces I pursued,

And the maiden was alone.
Lips were silent, eyes downcast

As a clasp-knife snaps the bait,
With her snare she seized me fast,

And the boy was captured straight.

Heav'n knows who's the happy swain

That she rambles with anew!
I must dare the sea again,

Spite of wind and weather too.
When the great and little fish

Wail and flounder in my net,
Straight returns my eager wish

In her arms to revel yet!

                                1815.