There oft may come in the foulest night
A vision so wondrous fair
That we start from our bed in a kind of dread,
Ah me! at beholding there
That vision so wondrous fair.
Its eyes, mayhap, are so filled with flame
That deep to our hearts they burn;
And they sadden our dream, for alone from Shame
And Sorrow those eyes could learn
The spell that we there discern.
Its lips so red and its cheeks so fair
And round, and its breast so white,
And its brow, that is writ with the pains that sit
In that saddened bosom, smite
Deep into our hearts at night.
Ah Sin! Ah Shame! (for ye both are one)
How sad are the tales ye tell
Of those women, so wondrously fair, undone
And flung where the Furies dwell —
Down deep to the depths of hell!
William Blocksidge, Songs o’ the South, London: Watts, 1908, p. 12-13
Furies = in Greek mythology, three underworld goddesses (or deities, spirits) of vengeance, described as having hair made of snakes, who cursed and punished criminals (who had escaped justice), evil-doers, and breakers of oaths (singular: Fury) (also known as the Erinyes); can also refer to an avenging spirit or someone who resembles an avenging spirit (especially a woman)
nocte intempesta = (Latin) “untimely night”, referring to that time when people have gone to bed, a time unfit for conducting business (the phrase carried an implication that anyone out and about at such an untimely phase of the night was possibly up to no good); Nietzsche described the “nocte intempesta” as “there in the night, where there is no time”
See: 1) Lewis Ramshorn, Dictionary of Latin Synonymes, for the Use of Schools and Private Students, Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1856, p. 142 (section 287)
2) William Robertson, A Dictionary of Latin phrases: Comprehending a Methodical Digest of the Various Phrases from the Best Authors (new edition), London: Baldwin, Cradock and Joy, 1824, p. 686 (column 2, “At Night, after the first sleep”)
3) Robin Small, Time and Becoming in Nietzsche’s Thought, London: Continuum, 2010, p. 36 (available at EPDF.Pub)
oft = (archaic) often
ye = (archaic) you (however, still in use in some places, e.g. in Cornwall, Ireland, Newfoundland, and Northern England; it can used as either the singular or plural form of “you”, although the plural form is apparently the more common usage)