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The Works of J. W. von Goethe/Volume 9/From "The Sorrows of Young Werther"

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[Prefixed to the second edition.]

Every youth for love's sweet portion sighs,
Every maiden sighs to win man's love;
Why, alas! should bitter pain arise
From the noblest passion that we prove?

Thou, kind soul, bewailest, lovest him well,
From disgrace his memory's saved by thee;
Lo, his spirit sighs from out its cell:
Be a man, nor seek to follow me.

Tender thoughts and sweet recollection,
That is life in its greatest perfection.