S. T. Coleridge - The d**h of Wallenstein (Act 3 Scene 2) lyrics
The COUNTESS, THEKLA.
It does not please me, princess, that he holds
Himself so still, exactly at this time.
Exactly at this time?
He now knows all
'Twere now the moment to declare himself.
If I'm to understand you, speak less darkly.
'Twas for that purpose that I bade her leave us.
Thekla, you are no more a child. Your heart
Is no more in nonage: for you love,
And boldness dwells with love—that you have proved
Your nature moulds itself upon your father's
More than your mother's spirit. Therefore may you
Hear what were too much for her fortitude.
Enough: no further preface, I entreat you.
At once, out with it! Be it what it may,
It is not possible that it should torture me
More than this introduction. What have you
To say to me? Tell me the whole, and briefly!
You'll not be frightened——
Name it, I entreat you.
Lies within my power to do your father
A weighty service——
Lies within my power.
Max. Piccolomini loves you. You can link him
Indissolubly to your father.
What need of me for that? And is he not
Already linked to him?
Should he not be so now—not be so always?
He cleaves to the emperor too.
Not more than duty
And honor may demand of him.
Proofs of his love, and not proofs of his honor.
Duty and honor!
Those are ambiguous words with many meanings.
You should interpret them for him: his love
Should be the sole definer of his honor.
The emperor or you must he renounce.
He will accompany my father gladly
In his retirement. From himself you heard,
How much he wished to lay aside the sword.
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He must not lay the sword aside, we mean;
He must unsheath it in your father's cause.
He'll spend with gladness and alacrity
His life, his heart's blood in my father's cause,
If shame or injury be intended him.
You will not understand me. Well, hear then:
Your father has fallen off from the emperor,
And is about to join the enemy
With the whole soldiery——
Alas, my mother!
There needs a great example to draw on
The army after him. The Piccolomini
Possess the love and reverence of the troops;
They govern all opinions, and wherever
They lead the way, none hesitate to follow.
The son secures the father to our interests—
You've much in your hands at this moment.
My miserable mother! what a d**h-stroke
Awaits thee! No! she never will survive it.
She will accommodate her soul to that
Which is and must be. I do know your mother:
The far-off future weighs upon her heart
With torture of anxiety; but is it
Unalterably, actually present,
She soon resigns herself, and bears it calmly.
O my foreboding bosom! Even now,
E'en now 'tis here, that icy hand of horror!
And my young hope lies shuddering in its grasp;
I knew it well—no sooner had I entered,
An heavy ominous presentiment
Revealed to me that spirits of d**h were hovering
Over my happy fortune. But why, think I
First of myself? My mother! O my mother!
Calm yourself! Break not out in vain lamenting!
Preserve you for your father the firm friend,
And for yourself the lover, all will yet
Prove good and fortunate.
Prove good! What good?
Must we not part; part ne'er to meet again?
He parts not from you! He cannot part from you.
Alas, for his sore anguish! It will rend
His heart asunder.
If indeed he loves you.
His resolution will be speedily taken.
His resolution will be speedily taken—
Oh, do not doubt of that! A resolution!
Does there remain one to be taken?
Collect yourself! I hear your mother coming.
How shall I bear to see her?