Thus I spoke, when faster
Than I could imagine a spirit
Led me forth from my own home
To a place I thought I'd never go.
The shaded forests and yearning
Brooks of my native country
Were glowing in the twilight.
I couldn't recognize the lands
I passed through, but then suddenly
In fresh splendor, mysterious
In the golden haze, quickly emerging
In the steps of the sun,
Fragrant with a thousand peaks,
Asia rose before me.
Blindly I searched for something
Familiar, since the broad streets
Were unknown to me: where the gold-
bejeweled Paktolos comes rushing down
from Tmolus, where Taurus and
And the gardens are full of flowers,
Like a quiet fire. Up above
In the light the silver snow
Thrives, and ivy grows from ancient
Times on the inaccessible walls,
Like a witness to immortal life,
While the solemn god-built palaces
Are borne by living columns
Of cypress and laurel.