This senseless witchcraft sickens and disgusts me –
and sayest thou that I shall recruit life’s powers,
here in this loathsome den of filthy madness?
Shall I petition an old hag for counsel?
And can the nauseous puddle of that pot make me a younger man by thirty winters?
There’s little hope if thou hast nothing better –
My expectation is already gone.
Is there in nature no restorative but this?
Has spirit never yet devised means different to restore the spring of life?
Now do I recognize my friend’s good sense.
Yes! There are also natural means by which
Life’s bloom and vigour may again be given;
But in a different book this lesson lies,
And it forms an odd chapter.
There is a manner, and it requires not gold, magic or medicine
Away with you in the fields, begin to hew and delve confine yourself, and limit every wish within a narrow circle, feed upon meats, simple, undisguised – and live, in short, beast-like ‘mong beasts – deem it no degradation thyself to spread the dung upon the field in the growth of which thou are to reap,
This is indeed the best way to repair life’s powers and wear at eighty a hale countenance.
Goethe’s Faust Scene: Witch’s Kitchen