Three Palinodias. I

A poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


"Incense is hut a tribute for the gods,
To mortals 'tis but poison."

The smoke that from thine altar blows,

Can it the gods offend?
For I observe thou hold'st thy nose

Pray what does this portend?
Mankind deem incense to excel

Each other earthly thing,
So he that cannot bear its smell,

No incense e'er should bring.

With unmoved face by thee at least

To dolls is homage given;
If not obstructed by the priest,

The scent mounts up to heaven.

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