Prometheus

Prometheus

Shroud your heaven, Zeus,
With cloudy vapours,
And do as you will, like the boy
That beheads thistles,
With oak-trees and mountain-tops;
You must my Earth
Now abandon to me,
And my hut, which you did not build,
And my hearth,
Whose glow
You begrudge me.I know of nothing poorer
Under the sun, than you, Gods!
You are barely nourished
By sacrificial offerings
And prayerful exhalations
Your Majesty
And would starve, were
Not children and beggars
Hopeful fools.

When I was a child,
And did not know the in or out,
I turned my wandering eyes toward
The sun, as if beyond it there were
An ear to hear my lament,
A heart like mine,
To take pity on the afflicted.

Who helped me
Against the Titans’ mischief?
Who delivered me from Death,
From Slavery?
Did you not accomplish it all yourself,
Holy, burning Heart?
And glowed, young and good,
Deceived, your thanks for salvation
To the sleeping one above?

I should honour you? For what?
Have you softened the sufferings,
Ever, of the burdened?
Have you stilled the tears,
Ever, of the anguished?
Was I not forged as a Man
By almighty Time
And the eternal Fate,
My masters and yours?

Do you somehow imagine
I should hate life,
Flee to the desert,
Because not every
Flowering dream may bloom?

Here I sit, forming people
In my image;
A race, to be like me,
To suffer, to weep,
To enjoy and delight themselves,
And to mock you –
As I do!

Goethe

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