Why did you sing only of the moment’s pleasure,
The joy of the hour, the second’s radiance?
Why did you say nothing of the happiness that for long years
Most quietly, purely burns — did you forget its existence?
Why did you sing of darkness, loneliness and death,
Why did you sing the frosty destinies of the defeated?
Be silent, questioner! Brief, glowing as sparks
Mv moments of happiness flew by.
Ihe words of love that soon grew silent only lied,
Brittle was the crystal of my joy, volatile the wine in it.
Mine was only the blinding illusion of dream-seconds,
The twinkling fall of shooting stars, the hurrying splendour of feasts.
Everyday happiness, the ordinary, warm and quiet,
Never laid its head upon my fevered brow.
The day of work is long and longer is the night of suffering,
The winged laughter of happiness is hut a swift-spent lightning bolt.