Seufzer eines Ungeliebten und Gegenliebe
Plaint of a Loveless Man and Requited Love


Did you not grant a share of love
To the life of every creature?
So why am I alone left out,
I ask of you, my mother, Nature?

Is there in forest or in pen,
In the air or in the sea
An animal that’s without love?
All find love except for me.

Granted that in woodland, pasture, mead
Trees, mosses, plants in love,
In mutual love combine.
Yet bride is none that I call mine.

From that, the sweetest of desires
No honied fruit ensues for me,
For I do lack that mutual love
That only one can grant, ‘tis she.

If you thought well of me,
Held me in some regard – if I but knew
You felt some fraction
Of what I feel for you,

To know my greeting
Is not taken amiss,
That your lips enjoy both
To give and get a kiss,

Then, O heavens, my heart,
Would burst with joy;
Your life and soul
You shan’t, in vain, destroy!

Kindness shared increases kindness’ power,
Mutual loving feeds on love, and so
What would remain a spark in ashes
Becomes a red-hot, fiery glow.