EDIFYING REFLECTIONS OF A TOBACCO-SMOKER.
_SET TO MUSIC BY JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH. AUTHOR UNKNOWN. TRANSLATED BY
As oft I fill my faithful pipe,
To while away the moments glad,
With fragrant leaves, so rich and ripe,
My mind perceives an image sad,
So that I can but clearly see
How very like it is to me.
My pipe is made of earth and clay,
From which my mortal part is wrought;
I, too, must turn to earth some day.
It often falls, as quick as thought,
And breaks in two,--puts out its flame;
My fate, alas! is but the same!
My pipe I color not, nor paint;
White it remains, and hence 'tis true
That, when in Death's cold arms I faint,
My lips shall wear the ashen hue;
And as it blackens day by day,
So black the grave shall turn my clay!
And when the pipe is put alight
The smoke ascends, then trembles, wanes,
And soon dissolves in sunshine bright,
And but the whitened ash remains.
'Tis so man's glory crumble must,
E'en as his body, into dust!
How oft the filler is mislaid;
And, rather than to seek in vain,
I use my finger in its stead,
And fancy as I feel the pain,
If coals can burn to such degree,
How hot, O Lord, must Hades be!
So in tobacco oft I find,
Lessons of such instructive type;
And hence with calm, contented mind
I live, and smoke my faithful pipe
In reverence where'er I roam,--
On land, on water, and at home.