XII. Book of Paradise:The Privileged MenThe favoured BeastsThe Seven Sleepers
That I, in the hour when first we met,
No word of treachery I could read;She seem'd to see me with delight,
If she'll but grant her smile so sweet,Or if at table she'll employ,
Because from thee he's torn?
And the sails soon in the breeze are swelling,And the sun with fiery love invites us;Fill'd the sails are, clouds on high are floating,On the shore each friend exulting raisesSongs of hope, in giddy joy expectingJoy the voyage through, as on the morn of sailing,And the earliest starry nights so radiant.
So from the ground by the handles she silently lifted the pitchers,Mounted the steps of the well, and Hermann follow'd the loved one.One of the pitchers he ask'd her to give him, thus sharing the burden."Leave it," she said, "the weight feels less when thus they are balanced;And the master I've soon to obey, should not be my servant.Gaze not so earnestly at me, as if my fate were still doubtfull!Women should learn betimes to serve, according to station,For by serving alone she attains at last to the mast'ry,To the due influence which she ought to possess in the household.Early the sister must learn to serve her brothers and parents,And her life is ever a ceaseless going and coming,Or a lifting and carrying, working and doing for others.Well for her, if she finds no manner of life too offensive,And if to her the hours of night and of day all the same are,So that her work never seems too mean, her needle too pointed,So that herself she forgets, and liveth only for others!For as a mother in truth she needs the whole of the virtues,When the suckling awakens the sick one, and nourishment calls forFrom the exhausted parent, heaping cares upon suff'ring.Twenty men together could not endure such a burden,And they ought not,--and yet they gratefully ought to behold it."
Castest far away.
So, with morning pinions bright,
To the youth the goblet then she brought,--
And breathest many a sighO'er his and thy distress, thou holy One!