The Maid of Ehrenthal
Fair nights beneath the mellow moon,
Foul nights when Nature's wildest tunes'
The tempest howled, on high,
A maiden sat in wan despair,
Veiled in her shining golden hair,
And this her piteous cry:
"ye nettles gray, spring up, ah! quick!
My head's aflame, my soul is sick;
My love awaits the bridal morn,
It cannot come till ye be grown;
Of your sharp strands the robe to spin,
Ere I my only love can win.
"A bridal robe fine spun for me,
And then a shroud; whose can it be?
'Neath these green mounds my parents sleep,
From their hearts' dust your roots must creep.
So said the cruel master: woe!
That I must p'en be wedded so!"
From out the gloomy mine at night,
Weird spirits came, and ere the light
Played verdant on the hill,
Behold the nettles, robe and shroud,
By dwarf hands spun, with craft endowed
Such missions to fulfill.
She wears the robe, the master proud,
Pale in death's sleep, lies in the shroud
By hands uncanny plied.
No longer now in wan despair,
But roses in her shining hair,
She smiles, a joyous bride.