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C.D. Warner, et al., comp. The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

The Leaves

By Fyodor Tyutchev (1803–1873)

Translation of Nathan Haskell Dole

LET pine-trees and cedars

All winter make show,

And sleep ’mid the snow-storms,

Wrapt fast in the snow.

Their needles are pallid

Like grass that is transient;

Though they never turn yellow

They always look ancient.

But we, tribes of lightness,

Though brief our abiding,

Are blooming with brightness

On our branches residing.

All the long lovely summer

In beauty we grew;

We played with the sunbeams,

We bathed in the dew.

But the birds have ceased singing,

The blossoms are dead,

The meadows are yellow,

The south wind has fled.

What use then in clinging

To the boughs all in vain?

’Twere best we should follow

O’er valley and plain.

O buffeting storm-winds!

Blow fiercer, blow harder,

And strip us from branches

We hate now with ardor.

Despoil us completely,—

We wish not to stay.

O whirl us and hurl us

Forever away!