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MORAVIAN VILLAGE

 

The huts like white-plumed birds in bevies stud
The slope. The breeze with gentle breath scarce blows,
And sluggish as Moravian blood
The streamlet flows.

Upon their farms the peasants abide in content,
Somewhere away in Vienna the good emperor's life is spent;
Germans beneath the mountains and Jews in the cities throng.

In the black fields like a streak of pitch the rapeseed is laid,
And in the meadow there delves a flaxen-haired maid;
She knows that a bridegroom will come to fetch her ere long.

The lad of Moravia casts on his labour his gaze,
'Midst his toiling he scarce for the maid heaves a sigh;
He knows that ere long a wife to the threshold will hie,
And the marriage-feast will continue three nights and three days.

The burly peasant, ruddy and tanned,
On the townsfolk looks down with a touch of pride;

None may hound him away from his land,
But,
But betwixt here and the Beskyds the gulf is wide.

 

"Songs of Silesia" (1911).