S. T. Coleridge - The d**h of Wallenstein (Act 2 Scene 3) lyrics
Max. Piccolomini just left you?
Where is Wrangel?
He is already gone.
In such a hurry?
It is as if the earth had swallowed him.
He had scarce left thee, when I went to seek him.
I wished some words with him—but he was gone.
How, when, and where, could no one tell me.
Nay, I half believe it was the devil himself;
A human creature could not so at once
Is it true that thou wilt send
How, Octavio! Whither send him?
He goes to Frauenberg, and will lead hither
The Spanish and Italian regiments.
Nay, heaven forbid!
And why should heaven forbid?
Him!—that deceiver! Wouldst thou trust to him
The soldiery? Him wilt thou let slip from thee,
Now in the very instant that decides us——
Thou wilt not do this! No! I pray thee, no!
Ye are whimsical.
O but for this time, duke,
Yield to our warning! Let him not depart.
And why should I not trust him only this time,
Who have always trusted him? What, then, has happened
That I should lose my good opinion of him?
In complaisance to your whims, not my own,
I must, forsooth, give up a rooted judgment.
Think not I am a woman. Having trusted him
E'en till to-day, to-day too will I trust him.
Must it be he—he only? Send another.
It must be he, whom I myself have chosen;
He is well fitted for the business.
Therefore I gave it him.
Because he's an Italian—
Therefore is he well fitted for the business!
I know you love them not, nor sire nor son,
Because that I esteem them, love them, visibly
Esteem them, love them more than you and others,
E'en as they merit. Therefore are they eye-blights,
Thorns in your footpath. But your jealousies,
In what affect they me or my concerns?
Are they the worse to me because you hate them?
Love or hate one another as you will,
I leave to each man his own moods and likings;
Yet know the worth of each of you to me.
Von Questenberg, while he was here, was always
Lurking about with this Octavio.
It happened with my knowledge and permission.
I know that secret messengers came to him
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That's not true.
O thou art blind,
With thy deep-seeing eyes!
Thou wilt not shake
My faith for me; my faith, which founds itself
On the profoundest science. If 'tis false,
Then the whole science of the stars is false;
For know, I have a pledge from Fate itself,
That he is the most faithful of my friends.
Hast thou a pledge that this pledge is not false?
There exist moments in the life of man,
When he is nearer the great Soul of the world
Than is man's custom, and possesses freely
The power of questioning his destiny:
And such a moment 'twas, when in the night
Before the action in the plains of Luetzen,
Leaning against a tree, thoughts crowding thoughts,
I looked out far upon the ominous plain.
My whole life, past and future, in this moment
Before my mind's eye glided in procession,
And to the destiny of the next morning
The spirit, filled with anxious presentiment,
Did knit the most removed futurity.
Then said I also to myself, "So many
Dost thou command. They follow all thy stars,
And as on some great number set their all
Upon thy single head, and only man
The vessel of thy fortune. Yet a day
Will come, when destiny shall once more scatter
All these in many a several direction:
Few be they who will stand out faithful to thee."
I yearned to know which one was faithfulest
Of all, my camp included. Great destiny,
Give me a sign! And he shall be the man,
Who, on the approaching morning, comes the first
To meet me with a token of his love:
And thinking this, I fell into a slumber,
Then midmost in the battle was I led
In spirit. Great the pressure and the tumult!
Then was my horse k**ed under me: I sank;
And over me away, all unconcernedly,
Drove horse and rider—and thus trod to pieces
I lay, and panted like a dying man;
Then seized me suddenly a savior arm;
It was Octavio's—I woke at once,
'Twas broad day, and Octavio stood before me.
"My brother," said he, "do not ride to-day
The dapple, as you're wont; but mount the horse
Which I have chosen for thee. Do it, brother!
In love to me. A strong dream warned me so."
It was the swiftness of this horse that snatched me
From the hot pursuit of Bannier's dragoons.
My cousin rode the dapple on that day,
And never more saw I or horse or rider.
That was a chance.
There's no such thing as chance
And what to us seems merest accident
Springs from the deepest source of destiny.
In brief, 'tis signed and sealed that this Octavio
Is my good angel—and now no word more.
[He is retiring.
This is my comfort—Max. remains our hostage.
And he shall never stir from here alive.
(stops and turns himself round).
Are ye not like the women, who forever
Only recur to their first word, although
One had been talking reason by the hour!
Know, that the human being's thoughts and deeds
Are not like ocean billows, blindly moved.
The inner world, his microcosmus, is
The deep shaft, out of which they spring eternally.
They grow by certain laws, like the tree's fruit—
No juggling chance can metamorphose them.
Have I the human kernel first examined?
Then I know, too, the future will and action.