Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Germany
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Germany: Vols. XVII–XVIII.  1876–79.
 
Introductory
The German the Dearest
Aloys Wilhelm Schreiber (1761–1841)
 
Translated by H. W. Dulcken

OF all the lands on earth that be,
The German land ’s the land for me;
    Bedewed with Heaven’s blessing;
And though nor gold nor jewels rare,
Good store of men and maidens fair,        5
    And corn and wine, possessing.
 
Of all the tongues on earth that be,
The German tongue ’s the tongue for me;
    Sweet sounds it may not borrow:
But when our hearts would hold discourse,        10
We ne’er shall find it lacketh force
    To tell of joy or sorrow.
 
Of all the maids on earth that be,
The German maid ’s the maid for me;
    A beauteous violet seeming;        15
With sweetest fragrance to the sense,
With not a thorn to give offence,
    Through many a summer beaming.
 
Of all the wives on earth that be,
The German wife ’s the wife for me;        20
    In form and mind a treasure.
At home her ministry is seen;
She will not roam abroad, I ween,
    To find elsewhere her pleasure.
 
Of customs that on earth there be,        25
The German customs give to me,—
    Good customs,—I revere them.
Through them men, hale in heart and limb,
Alternate sense with wit and whim,
    And keep the wine-cup near them.        30
 
Then fill it up with German wine,
That cometh from our German Rhine,
    To every heart’s elation;
Long live our German fatherland!
Long live of love and truth the band        35
    In our Confederation!
 
 
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