In days gone by, a tired old king,
Though weary, worn, and grey of hair,
Still believed that his heart could sing,
And wed a girl, a maiden fair.
One day, a callow youth came by;
He wooed her well, this winsome boy,
With ardent glance and wistful sigh,
And stole the old man's greatest joy.
The king, a bitter lesson learned;
Farewell to youth, and cheating wives!
With honest love so coldly spurned,
The king took from them both, their lives.
- Heinrich Heine
Translated from the German