Paired by destiny

Text by Heinrich Heine (1797-1856)

Translated into English by Joseph Massaad 

deutsch - franšais


You weep, looking at me and believing
That it is at my misery that you are weeping.
You do not know it , woman! but the tear
Flowing from your eye is for yourself, my dear.

Oh tell me if a presentiment
Does not, from time to time, present
To you the notion that perhaps
It is the will of destiny that has paired us?
Unity was to be our happiness, here below,
And separation a disastrous blow.

In the great book was written clearly,
That we should love each other dearly.
Your place was to be at my breast,
Where your self-assurance would awaken best;
I would have delivered you from the plant-kingdom,
Oh flower, lifted you up to my home,
With a kiss, lifted you to the highest of all
Forms of life. I would have given you a soul.

Now when the riddles are solved,
And the sand-glass time has elapsed
Oh do not cry, it had to be done.
I depart, and you fade all alone;
You fade before even blossoming,
You go out before even shining,
You die, you were death's prey,
Before living to see the day.

I know it now. By God! you are the one
I have loved. How bitter it is when
At the very moment of recognition
Sounds the hour of eternal separation!
It is at the same time a welcome
And a farewell! Today the time has come
To part forever. There will be, after we die,
No reunion for us in the heavenly sky.
Beauty has fallen into dust, it's in decay,
You will be no more, you will fade away.
With us poets, it is a different game,
Death cannot kill us quite the same,
With us, earthly destruction has no entry,
We live in the land of poetry,
In Avalon, the fairy-kingdom, of course.
Farewell forever, beautiful corpse!