Poetry       Prose       Letters

Georg Trakl


Springtime of the Soul

Outcry in sleep; through black alleys the wind falls,
The blue of spring beckons through breaking branches,
Purple night-dew and stars extinguish all around.
Greenish the river dawns, silverly the old avenues
And the towers of the city. O gentle drunkenness
In the gliding boat and the dark calls of the blackbird
In innocent gardens. Already, the rosy veil thins.

Solemnly the waters murmur. O the moist shadows of the floodplain,
The striding animal; greening shapes, flowering branches
Touch the crystal forehead; shimmering boat-sway.
Quietly the sun sounds in the rose-colored clouds by the hill.
Great is the stillness of the fir forest, the earnest shadows at the river.

Purity! Purity! Where are the terrible paths of death,
Of gray stony silence, the rocks of night
And the peaceless shadows? Abyss radiant with sun.

Sister, when I found you at the lonely clearing
In the forest, it was midday and the silence of the animal great;
Whiteness under wild oak, and the thorn bloomed silver.
Enormous dying and the singing flame in the heart.

Darker the waters flow around the beautiful play of fishes.
Hour of mourning, silent vision of the sun;
The soul is a strange shape on earth. Spiritually blueness
Dusks over the pruned forest; and a dark bell rings
Long in the village; peaceful escort.
Silently the myrtle blooms over the white eyelids of the dead.
Softly the waters whisper in the subsiding afternoon
And the wilderness on the bank greens more darkly; joy in the rosy wind;
The brother's gentle song by the evening hill.


© Jim Doss & Werner Schmitt



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