Faust, by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Cathedral

XX

Cathedral

Service, Organ and Anthem.

(Margaret among much people: the Evil Spirit behind Margaret.)

Evil Spirit

HOW otherwise was it, Margaret,
When thou, still innocent,
Here to the altar cam’st,
And from the worn and fingered book
Thy prayers didst prattle,
Half sport of childhood,
Half God within thee!
Margaret!
Where tends thy thought?
Within thy bosom
What hidden crime?
Pray’st thou for mercy on thy mother’s soul,
That fell asleep to long, long torment, and through thee?
Upon thy threshold whose the blood?
And stirreth not and quickens
Something beneath thy heart,
Thy life disquieting
With most foreboding presence?

Margaret

Woe! woe!
Would I were free from the thoughts
That cross me, drawing hither and thither
Despite me!

Chorus

   Diesira, dies illa,

Solvet soeclum in favilla!

(Sound of the organ.)

Evil Spirit

Wrath takes thee!
The trumpet peals!
The graves tremble!
And thy heart
From ashy rest
To fiery torments
Now again requickened,
Throbs to life!

Margaret

Would I were forth!
I feel as if the organ here
My breath takes from me,
My very heart
Dissolved by the anthem!

Chorus

   Judex ergo cum sedebit,

Quidquid latet, ad parebit,

Nil inultum remanebit.

Margaret

I cannot breathe!
The massy pillars
Imprison me!
The vaulted arches
Crush me! — Air!

Evil Spirit

Hide thyself! Sin and shame
Stay never hidden.
Air? Light?
Woe to thee!

Chorus

   Quid sum miser tunc dicturus,

Quem patronem rogaturus,

Cum vix Justus sit securus

Evil Spirit

They turn their faces,
The glorified, from thee:
The pure, their hands to offer,
Shuddering, refuse thee!
Woe!

Chorus

Quid sum miser tune dicturus?

Margaret

Neighbor! your cordial!        (She falls in a swoon.)

She falls in a swoon

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Last updated Friday, March 7, 2014 at 19:14