First Night

Zinaida Lazda

The soldier under earth shall joy in night -
A long good night!

How sweet the melody! How far from fear
It leads the soul, marked to be buried here,
That fought a fierce encounter at a death's portal
And scaled its vision of all that was mortal.

'What could it be that brought your heart to die?
And did you see it, soldier, with your eye?'
-'For my own peace I parted from this breath;
I saw it beckon in the eyes of death.
Peace, the good guardian, glitter like a star!
If I could live again, my soul's affection
Should see this battle won and Latvia's resurection!'

Earth in a handful falls. A chilly night.
The soldier's battle done,
A long good night!

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