Death to the Old Woman

Death to the old woman

Death to the Old Woman

Vil du saa nødig døe, du gamle Bestemoder!
Hvad kand det nytte dig, at du i Verden roder?
    Man i dit Ansigt seer jo klarlig malet af,
    At Syndens Sold hos dig er ikke Skiønheds Straf.
Du kand ey leve dig til nogen meere Baade.
Du Tid nok haver havt, at søge HErrens Naade.
    Jeg tænkte, at du var af denne Verden mæt;
    Men mærker, du endnu kand trippe nok saa let.
Du bruger all din Magt, og dig vil fra mig slide;
Men jeg har Himlens Bud til dig, det maae du vide.
    Til Døde-Dandsen du dig strax tillave maae.
    Hvor nødig du end vil, skal du dog med mig gaae.
Are you so reluctant to die, you old grandmother!
What can it help you that you rummage in the world?
    One clearly sees painted in your face,
    that the wages of sin for you is not punishment by beauty.
You cannot live to any benefit for yourself.
You have had enough time to seek the LOrd's mercy.
    I thought that you were satiated with this world;
    but I sense you can still step lightly.
You use all your strength and try to break away from me;
but I have a message from Heaven to you, this you must know.
    For the dance of death you must immediately prepare.
    How much you hate to, you must walk with me.

The Old Woman to Death

Du tænker, fordi jeg er gammel, og har Rynker,
Og fordi Lemmerne nu daglig sammensynker,
    At jeg har Lyst at døe, og ey vil leve meer.
    Nej, du i dette Haab dig nu bedraget seer.
Jeg kand af dette Liv aldeles kied ey blive.
Mig Verdens Sysler nok kand at bestille give.
    Naar jeg af Ælde ey kand høre eller see,
    Saa er det Tid, at gaae bort fra de Levende.
Tag mig dog ey med Vold. Jeg dig jo reent ud siger:
At dette Hierte ey endnu til Graven higer.
    Naar jeg har ønsket dig, det kun er skeet på Skrømt.
    Jeg døer. Ach! at min Pligt var ey af mig forsømt.
You think - because I'm old and have wrinkles
and because my limbs daily collapse -
    that I want to die and don't want to live anymore.
    No, in this hope you now see yourself deceived.
I cannot become tired of this life.
The pursuits of this world can give me enough to do.
    When I, from old age, cannot hear or see,
    then it's time, to go away from the living.
Do not take me by force. I tell you clearly:
that this heart does not yet long for the grave.
    Whenever I have wished for you it has only been in jest.
    I die. Alas! I hope I have not neglected my duties.

* * * *

At see Graahærdede Ulyst til Døden have,
Og sig alt meer og meer i Verden ned at grave,
    Det ingen Ære er for Alderdommens Aar;
    Thi de uvillig bort fra Verden altid gaaer.
To see grizzled people have a dislike for death,
and dig themselves more and more down into the world,
    this is no honour for the years of old age;
    Because they always go unwillingly away from the world.

 

For unknown reasons the old woman was not included in the 1814-edition.


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