Poetry       Prose       Letters

Georg Trakl


Cheerful Spring


Beside the brook flowing through the yellow fallow field,
The dry reed from last year still moves.
Sounds glide wonderfully through grayness,
A whiff of warm muck blows by.

From willows, catkins dangle placidly in the wind.
Dreamily, a soldier sings his sad song.
A strip of meadow swishes blown and dull,
A child stands in silhouette gentle and melodious.

The birches there, the black thornbush,
Also shapes flee dissolved in smoke.
Brightly green blooms and something else rots
And toads slept among the young leeks.


I love you truly, sturdy laundress,
Still the flood bears heaven's golden burden.
A small fish flashes past and fades;
A waxy countenance flows along through the alders.

In gardens bells sink long and quiet
A small bird warbles like crazy.
The gentle corn swells quietly and entranced
And bees still collect with earnest diligence.

Come now, love, to the weary laborer!
Into his hut a lukewarm ray falls.
The forest streams through the evening, austere and pale,
And now and then buds crackle cheerfully.


How all that is being born seems so sick!
A feverish mist encircles a hamlet.
Yet from the branches a gentle spirit beckons
And opens the mind wide and frightened.

A blooming outpour trickles away very placidly
And the unborn cultivates its own rest.
The lovers bloom toward their stars
And their breath flows sweeter through the night.

So painfully good and true is all that lives;
And lightly an old stone touches you:
Truly! I will always be with you.
O mouth! that trembles through the white willow.


© Jim Doss & Werner Schmitt



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