Home  »  library  »  poem  »  Vineta

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


By Wilhelm Müller (1794–1827)

Translation of James Anthony Froude

FROM the sea’s deep hollow faintly pealing,

Far-off evening bells come sad and slow;

Faintly rise, the wondrous tale revealing

Of the old enchanted town below.

On the bosom of the flood reclining,

Ruined arch and wall and broken spire,

Down beneath the watery mirror shining,

Gleam and flash in flakes of golden fire.

And the boatman, who at twilight hour,

Once that magic vision shall have seen,

Heedless how the crags may round him lower,

Evermore will haunt the charmèd scene.

From the heart’s deep hollow faintly pealing,

Far I hear them, bell-notes sad and slow,

Ah! a wild and wondrous tale revealing

Of the drownèd wreck of love below.

There a world in loveliness decaying

Lingers yet in beauty ere it die;

Phantom forms across my senses playing,

Flash like golden fire-flakes from the sky.

Lights are gleaming, fairy bells are ringing,

And I long to plunge and wander free

Where I hear those angel-voices singing

In those ancient towers below the sea.