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FOLK-SONGS OF ROUMANIA. 325
And drives me wild, too, with the sound of his voice,
It is he that drinks my sleep,
And when I ask him, " Whither shall I take thee
That I may carry thee no more ? "
He points to the horizon.
He is as heavy as a widow's heart.
I know, too, all his thoughts, and his thoughts burn me,
Because he thinks upon my sorrow.
And when we pass some hut, I say,
" Let us linger here awhile, this hut seemeth pleasant to me,"
But he answers, " Never a hut may open its doors to thee,"
And when I ask him, " Friend, art thou not yet weary ? "
He answers, " I ? I rest in thy weariness,
Refresh myself in thy sweat."
Even on my own hearth
I can never set him down over against me,
He clings to my shoulders always —
I know not even his face.
Then I say to him, " Thou unknown one !"
And he answers me, " Thou accurst! "
Go not over the little bridge,
It is too old. The trees that have been felled lie on the earth And the birds that still would perch upon their boughs Must fly very close to earth.
One of the peculiar customs of Roumania is that of two girls of different families choosing each other as sisters by affinity, called suratas, or " sisters of the cross," a relationship sanctioned by the church, and acting as the tie of blood in relation to family marriages. It is this custom which