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Arend Victorie

[To Arend Victorie’s index]

Düütsche Schrievwies’

As Lovely as Stars
(Cissy the Fog Witch)

by Reinhard F. Hahn—
Adapted from Arend Victorie’s
Drenthe Low Saxon poem “As sterren zo mooi

Video: “Cilie de nevelhekse” by No Name

Listen here, one and all, to this tale I recall1
Of a lassie at Hollandscheveld long ago,2
Cissy her name, born to wealth and to fame,3
But nobody told the lass this was so.
When at daybreak the sun would set out on its run
Cissy’d dance and would drive all the mist from the marsh.
Her golden voice rang across heath land and fen.
No one else could sing like this lassie could sing.
As lovely as stars. As lovely as stars.
Her eyes, they would sparkle as lovely as stars.

Folks around could not stand her, decided to ban her,
Forbade that the lassie show herself in their town,
Began agitating, went on to witch baiting,
And the lass nearly ended up burnt at the stake.
But across moor and fen rode a young knight and then
Stole the heart of the lassie that lived on the marsh.
As he roamed all around bewitched by her sound
He could think of no other than Cissy alone.
As lovely as stars. As lovely as stars.
Her eyes, they would sparkle as lovely as stars.

Picture of a a bronze sculpture of Cillie
Update: A Cissy Sighting! (Click here)

But at last he would hurt her, was forced to desert her.
The nobleman’s parents opposed the affair.
And he solemnly swore he would come back once more
To Cissy, sweet Cissy, his nymph of the marsh.
In a dazed and ill state, troubled by her ill fate
Cissy roamed on the marshland one dark, stormy night.
Lost in darkness and fright she kept calling her knight.
No one ever found out how the lass disappeared.

All around here folks swear that her ghost is still there,
Haunting the land, Cissy’s soul finds no peace.
Caught in desperate plight she keeps calling her knight.
As lovely as stars. As lovely as stars.
Her eyes may still sparkle but her voice screams her woe.
As lovely as stars. As lovely as stars.
Her eyes do still sparkle as lovely as stars.

1 The time frame of the events described here is 1699–1706.
2  The “Hollandse veld” was a portion of marshland near Hoogeveen, Drenthe, in the Netherlands, acquired and settled by merchants from Holland (Western Netherlands), including some owners of the Dutch East India Company. Hollandseveld is now a village.
3 Cillie de Cosse had a Dutch (Hollandic) mother and a French father. She grew up in Suriname where the de Cosse family owned a plantation.

[To Arend Victorie’s index]

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