Death to the emperor

Death to the emperor

Death to the emperor

Din Magt er nu forbie; spend af din Purpur-Kaabe.
Du kand ey længer Liv i denne Verden haabe.
    Dit Scepter overgiv; thi du maae følge mig,
    Og blive Staadere i Gravens Bolig lig.
Nu er du Menneske, og Afmagt maae fornemme,
Om du har vildet sligt blant Jordens Guder glemme;
    Med væbnede Armeer du mig ey jager bort;
    Thi du af samme Leer, som andre Folk er gjort.
See, Pilen færdig er, som dræbe skal dit Hjerte.
Du ved Forraadnelsen skal ormene beværte.
    Den Tidende ey bør dig forekomme fæl.
    Beskik dit Huus, og døe. Befal nu Gud din Siel.
Your power has ended. unbuckle your purple coat.
You can no longer hope for life in this world.
    Surrender your sceptre; because you must follow me,
    and become like a beggar in the dwelling of the grave.
Now you are a human being and must feel powerlessness,
even if you have wanted to forget such among the gods of Earth.
    With armed forces you cannot drive me away.
    Because you are made of the same clay as other people;
See, the arrow is ready, the one that shall kill your heart.
You by the putrefaction shall treat the worms.
    This information should not appear loathsome to you.
    Set your house in order and die(1). Now commit your soul to God.

The emperor to Death

O! Død! hvor bitter er din Ankomst for min tanke.
Du paa en Keysers Dør tør u-undseelig banke?
    Din Fælhed siger mig, jeg er et Menneske.
    Jeg veed, du aldrig giør Persons Anseelse.
Forgieves vilde jeg imod din Magt mig sætte.
Det mig ey nytte kand, med Himlens Gud at trætte.
    Hvor er Høyagtelsen nu for min Majestet?
    Ach! at ey meget var af mig i Verden skeet!
En skræksom Tanke-Flok for Sielens Øyne møder.
Mit Scepters brugte Magt min Døds-Stund ey forsøder.
    O! at en Tolders Bøn en Keysers blive her!
    Jeg Syndere maae døe. Gud! Sielen naadig vær!
Oh! Death! how bitter is your arrival to my thoughts.
You dare un-bashful to knock on an emperor's door?
    Your ugliness tells me I am a human being.
    I know you never care about social classes.
In vain I would resist your power.
It's no use to argue with God in heaven.
    Where is now the high esteem for my majesty?
    Alas. That not much happened from me in this world.
A terrible flock of thoughts meet in front of the eyes of the soul.
The used power of my sceptre cannot sweeten my hour of death.
    Oh! That the prayer of a publican(2) should here become that of an emperor!
    I sinner must die. God. Be gracious to the soul!

* * * *

Jo større Leylighed til Synd os Livet giver,
Jo meere haard og fæl os Dødens Komme bliver,
    Naar vi har Lysterne i Tømme ikke holdt,
    Og daglig ved vor Synd os Dødens Dom forvoldt.
The greater opportunity for sin that life gives us,
the more hard and ugly the coming of Death will be,
    when we haven't curbed our lusts,
    and daily by our sin has caused the judgment of Death.

Footnotes: (1) (2)

put his house in order . . .: Isaiah says to king Hezekiah both in 2nd Kings 20:1 and in Isaiah 38:1, "Thus saith the LORD, Set thine house in order; for thou shalt die, and not live".
the prayer of a publican . . .: Luke 18:13, "And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner".

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