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And it seem'd like sunshine when he raised

His joyous glance to mine!
With a stag's fleet step he bounded by,
So full of life--but he must die !

He must, he must! in that deep dell,

By that dark water's side,
"Tis known that ne'er a proud tree fell,

But an heir of his fathers died.
And he—there's laughter in his eye,
Joy in his voice-yet he must die!

I've borne him in these arms, that now

Are nerveless and unstrung ;
And must I see, on that fair brow,

The dust untimely flung?
I must !-yon green oak, branch and crest,
Lies floating on the dark lake's breast !

The noble boy Show proudly sprung

The falcon from his hand !
It seem'd like youth to see him young, ,

A flower in his father's land !

But the hour of the knell and the dirge is nigh, For the tree hath fall’n, and the flower must die.

Say not ’tis vain !—I tell thee, some

Are warn’d by a meteor's light,
Or a pale bird flitting calls them home,

Or a voice on the winds by night;
And they must go and he too, he-
-Woe for the fall of the glorious Tree!


It is a popular belief in the Odenwald, that the passing of the Wild Huntsman announces the approach of war. He is supposed to issue with his train from the ruined castle of sodenstein, and traverse the air to the opposite castle of Schnellerts. It is confidently asserted that the sound of his phantom horses and hounds was heard by the duke of Baden before the commencement of the last war in Germany.

The rest was deep at the slumberer's hour

If thou didst not bear the blast
of the savage horn, from the mountain-tower,

As the Wild Night-Huntsman pass’d,
And the roar of the stormy chase went by,

Through the dark unquiet sky!

The stag sprung up from his mossy bed

When he caught the piercing sounds,
And the oak-boughs crash'd to his antler'd head

As he flew from the viewless hounds;
And the falcon soar'd from her craggy height,

Away through the rushing night !

The banner shook on its ancient hold,

And the pine in its desert-place,
As the cloud and tempest onward roll'd

With the din of the trampling race ;
And the glens were fill'd with the laugh and shout,

And the bugle, ringing out !

From the chieftain's hand the wine-cup fell,

At the castle's festive board,
And a sudden pause came o'er the swell

Of the harp's triumphal chord;
And the Minnesinger's * thrilling lay

In the hall died fast away.

* Minnesinger, love-singer; the wandering minstrels of Germany were so called in the middle ages.

The convent's chanted rite was stay'd,

And the hermit dropp'd his beads, And a trembling ran through the forest-shade,

At the neigh of the phantom steeds, And the church-bells pealed to the rocking blast

As the Wild Night-Huntsman pass'd.

The storm hath swept with the chase away,

There is stillness in the sky,
But the mother looks on her son to-day,

With a troubled heart and eye,
And the maiden's brow hath a shade of care

'Midst the gleam of her golden hair!

The Rhine flows bright, but its waves ere long

Must hear a voice of war,
And a clash of spears our hills among,

And a trumpet from afar ;
And the brave on a bloody turf must lie,

For the Huntsman hath gone by!

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