Where will a place of refuge, noble friend,
For peace and freedom ever open lie!
The century in tempests had its end,
The new one now begins with murder's cry.
Each land-connecting bond is torn away,
Each ancient custom hastens to decline;
Not e'en the ocean can war's tumult stay.
Not e'en the Nile-god, not the hoary Rhine.
Two mighty nations strive, with hostile power,
For undivided mastery of the world;
And, by them, each land's freedom to devour,
The trident brandished is the lightning hurled.
Each country must to them its gold afford,
And, Brennus-like, upon the fatal day,
The Frank now throws his heavy iron sword,
The even scales of justice to o'erweigh.
His merchant-fleets the Briton greedily
Extends, like polyp-limbs, on every side;
And the domain of Amphitrite free
As if his home it were, would fain bestride.
E'en to the south pole's dim, remotest star,
His restless course moves onward, unrestrained;
Each isle he tracks, each coast, however far,
But paradise alone he ne'er has gained!
Although thine eye may every map explore,
Vainly thou'lt seek to find that blissful place,
Where freedom's garden smiles for evermore,
And where in youth still blooms the human race.
Before thy gaze the world extended lies,
The very shipping it can scarce embrace;
And yet upon her back, of boundless size,
E'en for ten happy men there is not space!
Into thy bosom's holy, silent cells,
Thou needs must fly from life's tumultuous throng!
Freedom but in the realm of vision dwells,
And beauty bears no blossoms but in song.