The Haste of Love

We present this work in honor of the poet’s 425th birthday.

Martin Opitz
German
1597 – 1639

 

Ah, sweetheart, let us hurry
We still have time.
Delaying thus, we bury
Our mutual prime.

Beauty’s bright gift shall perish
As leaves grow sere;
All that we have and cherish
Shall disappear.

The cheek of roses fadeth
Gray grows the head;
And fire the eyes evadeth
And passion’s dead.

The mouth, love’s honeyed winner
Is formless, cold;
The hand, like snow, gets thinner
And thou art old!

So let us taste the pleasure
That youth endears,
Ere we are called to measure
The flying years.

Give, as thou lov’st and livest
Thy love to me,
Even though, in what thou givest
My loss should be!

Translation by Bayard Taylor

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