The sun goes down behind the mountains
and in the valleys the evenings dawn
with cool breezes and long shadows.
Oh, see! How like a silver barque
the moon floats on the heavenly sea.
Under the dark spruce I felt the breeze.
The streams sang louder and
the flowers glowed in the twilight
as Earth breathed peace and sleep.
All desires will soon be dreams
for tired men plodding wearily home
with forgotten happiness of youth.
Birds crouch in twigs. The world sleeps on.
The breeze blows cool through the spruce
where I stand and wait for my friend.
Where I wait to bid him a last farewell.
I yearn, O friend, to enjoy the beauty
of the evening at your side. Where are you?
I've been alone so long.
With my lute I wandered back and forth
on paths on which the soft grass swelled.
O beauty! O eternal love! O life!
When from his horse he dismounted
and handed me the parting drink. I asked
him where he must go, and why.
When he spoke his voice was choking:
"My friend, in this world
I've had little good fortune.
"So, where do I go? I go to the mountain.
To seek my peace for my heart, to see my town,
my home; not to stray abroad."
My heart is still and waits for the hour.
The dear Earth everywhere
newly blooms with green Spring.
All over, eternally, a distant blue sky!
after Hans Bethge, Emily Ezust, Mong-Kao-Jen & Wang Wei