The exulting Son of the Most High, Like to the sun itself, is named by the mighty An emblem, and here is the staff Of song signaling down. For nothing is common. It wakens the dead Who are not yet caught by the rawness of death. But many shy eyes Wait to behold the Hght. They would not Blossom forth in the sharp radiance. Though the golden bridle guideth their courage. But when, As from swelHng eyebrows Forgetful of the world. Quietly shining strength falls From the Holy Scriptures, Rejoicing in grace They yield themselves to calm vision.
Quiet is his sign In the thimderous sky. And One stands beneath it His life long. For Christ Hves yet. But the heroes, his sons. All are come and the Holy Scriptures From him, and the deeds of the earth Have illumined the hghtning till now, A contest unwaning. But he is there. For his works Are known to him from everlasting.
Too long, too long already Has the glory of the Blessed been viewless. For each of the Blessed demand sacrifice. Yet if one were passed over Ne'er did it bring about good. We have served the earth our mother And of late we have served The light of the sim Unwittingly, but the Father who rules over all Loves best that the constant Letter be fostered, And enduring existence Interpreted well.
With this is accordant The song of my people. Wo aber Gefahr ist, wachst I Das Rettende auch. So sprach ich, da entfiihrte Mich schneller, denn ich vermutet I Und weit, wohin ich nimmer Zu kommen gedacht, ein Genius mich Vom eigenen Haus. Denn alles ist gut. Drauf starb er. Vieles ware Zu sagen davon. Und es griinen Tief an den Bergen auch lebendige Bilder. Doch furchtbar ist, wie da und dort Unendlich hin zerstreut das Lebende Gott.
Nicht alles will der Hochste zumal. Zwar Eisen traget der Schacht, Und glii- hende Harze der Atna, So hatt ich Reichtum, Ein Bild zu bil- den, und ahnlich Zu schaun, wie er gewesen, den Christ, Wenn aber einer spornte sich selbst, Und traurig redend, un- terweges, da ich wehrlos ware, Mich iiberfiele, dass ich staunt und von dem Gotte Das Bild nachahmen mocht ein Knecht— Im Zome sichtbar sah' ich einmal Des Himmels Herm, nicht, dass ich sein soUt etwas, sondern Zu lernen.
Giitig sind sie, ihr Verhasstestes aber ist, Solange sie herrschen, das Falsche, und es gilt I Dann Menschliches unter Menschen nicht mehr. Denn sie nicht walten, es waltet aber Unsterblicher Schicksal und es wandelt ihr Werk Von selbst und eilend geht es zu Ende. Die Toten wecket Er auf, die noch getangen nicht Vom Rohen sind. Es warten aber Der scheuen Augen viele Zu schauen das Licht. Still ist sein Zei- chen I Am donnernden Himmel. Und Einer stehet daninter Sein Leben lang. Denn noch lebt Christus. Er ist aber dabei. Denn seine Werke sind Ihm alle bewusst von jeher.
Zu lang, zu lang schon ist Die Ehre der Himmlischen unsicht- bar. Dem f olgt deutscher Gesang. Ripened the fruit, in fire cast, baked And tried on the earth, and it is the law That all go back into it, like snakes, Prophetic, dreaming on The hills of the heavens. And there is so much Like a burden Of logs on the shoulders That has to be borne. Though the roads Are not right.
For discrepant, As horses, go the tethered Elements and the immemorial Laws of the earth. And ever A longing strains after the fetterless. But there is so much That has to be borne. And one must be true. Let us look not before, though, Nor after. May we be rocked, rather, as A boat is cradled at sea.
Aber bos sind Die Pfade. Und immer Ins Ungebundene gehet eine Sehnsucht. Vieles aber ist Zu behalten. Und Noth die Treue. Vorwarts aber und riikwarts woUen wir [ Nicht sehn. Uns wiegen lassen, wie Auf schwankem Kahne der See. Voices calmly wending filled And aired is the ancient Bliss-wont hall; fragrant above green carpets floats The happy cloud, stand gleaming wide, Of ripest fruit abundant, and of golden-wreathed bowls.
Well meted out, resplendent rows Uprising here and there aside of the Smoothed ground, the tables. For, coming from afar Hither, at eventide, Loving guests have bid themselves. Dawn fills my eyes. Well-nigh I deem This celebration's prince. Him, to behold That smiles upon a day's great labor: Although you will deny your strangeness And, wearied by your glorious course, Cast down your eyes, forgotten, softly shaded. And will take on a friendly shape, O Widely Known, Yet bends the knees your awe. Nothing outstrips you; But this I know: of mortal you came not.
Wisdom may show me many a thing, but Where a god enters as well A more luminous day wiU break. Yet not xmheralded he comes: And he whom neither flame nor flood deterred Need not be vainly startled by this stillness, now That neither man nor spirit yields to order. Downstream to sleep, at the sounding of peace.
But, days endeared of innocence, you also bring Today, O loved ones, the celebration, and The spirit blossoms in this quiet round; And hasten forth I must, although, O friends, my locks are gray, an eternal youth Preparing the wreaths for the feast. And many a one I would gladly ask; but you. Concerned, stem but friendly, for mankind, who Far off beneath Syrian palms, Close by that city, would sit by the well: The com fields mstled, quietly the cool Air breathed in the shade of the sacred mountains.
So did loving friends shade you, Like faithful clouds tempering Your rays cast toward man. A mortal doom, amidst your words, was to fold A darker shade around you, dreadful fate. So transient Is what Heaven proffers; but not in vain therefore, For but lightly a god will touch, knowing What are our limits, the human abode. Nor can we reckon the moment. Then, too, Hcense may walk unleashed, Blasphemers shall reach the holy spot From distant parts, exercising their frenzy To strike at a fate; yet gratitude Does not come straight in the wake of divine gifts: It must be won through ordeal.
Had not the giver been thrifty always, Surely the sacred treasures of our hearth Would have turned all to destruction. Even so, much was granted us from above. Fire we received. And the shores, and the floods of the sea. Before your eyes the stars Teach you, who shall never become their equal. Of the eternally living, however. Whence joy flows, and song, One came, a son, valiantly calm. And now we behold him. Knowing his father, now That, to hold his celebration.
The high Spirit of the World Has descended toward us.
Translation of «Hilke» into 25 languages
Too great he was to be the lord of ages; Too far his realm to be ever exhausted. Even so, one day a god may choose labor To be like the mortals, sharing their fate. For it is decreed that all shall recognize each other. And language hold sway once silence has returned. Yet where the Spirit liveth we venture forth.
Contending for the best. Thus I judge it best —When the painter has at last achieved his likeness And stepped, masterful, from his workshop, lord of love only— That equity reign All the way from earth to heaven. Man has experienced much since the dawn. Ever since speech began, and mutual notice; But song follows apace. And the vision of time, divinely unfolding.
Sign of the Spirit, lies before us, bonds of aUiance Fastening his might to the powers of nature. Not him alone, but the unborn generations This token proves: just as in plants Mother Earth, and air, and light will join together. Yet as a final token, O holy powers, This very day of celebration testifies For you, a mark of love. You, unforgettable one, at time's decline, Our celebration's youthful prince. No sooner wiU This race lie down imtil You, promised ones, each single one Of you, immortal beings, to pronounce Your heaven's bounties, have arrived In our house.
Fragrant breezes Are your herald. The steaming downs announce you And the ground, still resounding with tempests. Now the cheek is refreshed with hope And in front of the opened bouse The mother sits with her child. Regarding this utter peace. And fewer seem the agonies. A harbinger has caught the soul, A promise sent, of golden light. Keeping the aged from dying. Well wrought from above are The savors of life. And labors banned.
For all is pleasing now, But most of all Simphcity: for the vainly sought. The golden fruit. You grieved, O Mother, like The Honess when. Nature, You lost your children. Too eagerly loving, you suffered their loss. When robbed of them by a foe Whom you almost took for your own son, A satyr mingling with gods. Thus you did much of your building And buried many a thing. For you are hated by those whom You, powerful beyond time. Had drawn forth into hght. Now you know and, knowing, relax: For gladly rests down below.
So it may ripen, the anxiously caring world. Denn feme kommend haben Hieher, zur Abendstunde, Sich liebende Gaste beschieden. Nichts vor dir, [ Nur Fines weiss ich, Sterbliches bist du nicht. Ein Weiser mag mir manches erhellen; wo aber Ein Gott auch noch erscheint, Da ist doch andere Klarheit. Das ist, sie horen das Werk, Langst vorbereitend, von Morgen nach Abend, jetzt erst, Denn un- ermesslich brausst, in der Tief e verhallend, Des Donnerers Echo, das tausendjahrige Wetter, Zu schlaf en, iibertont von Friedens- lauten, hinunter.
Und manchen mocht' ich laden, aber o du, Der freundlichemst den Menschen zugethan, Dort unter syrischer Pahne, Wo nahe lag die Stadt, am Brunnen geme war; Das Komf eld rauschte rings, still athmete die Kiihlung Vom Schatten des geweihetenGebirges; I Und die lieben Freunde, das treue Gewolk, Umschatteten dich auch, damit der heiligkiihne Durch Wildniss mild dein Straal zu Menschen kam, o JiinglingI Ach' aber dunkler umschattete, mit- ten im Wort, dich I Furchtbarentscheidend ein todtlich Verhang- nis. So ist schnell Verganglich alles Himmlische; aber umsonst nicht; Denn schonend riihrt des Maases allzeit kundig Nur einen Augenblick die Wohnimgen der Menschen Ein Gott an, imver- selm, und keiner weiss es, wenn?
Auch dart alsdann das Freche driiber gehn Und kommen muss zum heilgen Ort das Wilde Von Enden fern, iibt rauhbetastend den Wahn, Und trif t daran ein Schicksal, aber Dank, Nie folgt der gleich hemach dem gott- gegebenen Geschenke; I Tiefpriif end ist es zu f assen. Des Gottlichen aber empfiengen wir Doch viel.
Und es lehret Gestim dich, das Vor Augen dir ist, doch nimnier kannst du ihm gleichen. Denn langst war der zum Herm der Zeit zu gross Und weit aus reichte sein Feld; wann hats ihn aber erschopfet? Einmal mag aber ein Gott auch Tagewerk erwahlen, Gleich sterblichen und theilen alles Schicksal. Schicksalgesetz ist diss, dass alle sich erfahren, Dass, wenn die Stille kehrt, auch eine Sprache sei.
I Wo aber wirkt der Geist, sind auch wir mit, und streiten, Was wohl das Beste sei. So diinkt mir jezt das Beste, Wenn nun vollendet sein Bild und fertig ist der Meister, Und selbst ver- klart davon aus seiner Werkstatt tritt, Der stille Gott der Zeit und nur der Liebe Gesez Das schonausgleichende gilt von hier an bis zum Himmel. Und das Zeitbild, das der grosse Geist entfaltet, Ein Zeichen liegts vor uns, das zwischen ihm und andem Ein Biindnis zwi- schen ihm und andem Machten ist.
Nicht er allein, die Uner- zeugten, Ew'gen Sind kennbar alle daran, gleichwie auch an den Pflanzen Zulezt ist aber doch, ihr heiligen Machte, fiir euch Das Liebeszeichen, das Zeugnis Dass ihrs noch seiet, der Festtag. So hast du manches gebaut, Und manches begraben, Denn es hasst dich, was Du, vor der Zeit Allkraftige, zum Lichte gezogen. Nun kennest, nun lassest du diss; I Denn gerne fiihllos ruht, Bis dass es reift, furchtsam- geschaftiges drunten. What here we are, far oflF a god amends With harmonies, everlasting recompense, and peace.
For a while, especially during his sojourn in Jena, he was subjected to Schiller's influence. In Leipzig he met Friedrich Schlegel and became deeply attached to him and his new ideas. After his graduation from the Wit- tenberg law school , he moved to Tennstedt, in Thuringia, to train for a pubHc post and met there in the thirteen-year-old Sophie von Kiihn with whom he fell in love. At her death the poet was imconsolable, and out of his grief sprang his Hymns to the Night in which he expressed a mystical death wish, granted soon there- after: he died of consimiption in , when scarcely twenty-nine.
In addition to the Hymns, considered a land- mark in the history of German poetry, Novahs wrote two lyrical novels— The Novices of Sais and Henry of Ofter- dingen, wherein the symboHc 'l lue flower" of the Roman- tics first blossomed— an essay, "Christianity or Europe," in which he glorified the medieval spirit, and finally his Spir- itual SongSy inspired by the rituals and festivals of the church and praising the Virgin Mary as the great symbol of the Infinite.
When numbers, figures, no more hold the key To solve the living creatures' mystery, When those who kiss and sing have knowledge more Than all the deeply learned scholars' store. And when in poesy and faerie Men read the world's eternal story, Then will a secret word obhge to flee All of this mad perversity. Gifted with feehng, Bestows not his love On the all-joyful light? As life's inmost soul It is breathed By the giant world Of restless stars Who swim in its blue ocean.
By the sparkling stone, The peaceful plant. By the creatures' Many-fashioned Ever-moving Hfe. It is breathed by the clouds Many-hued, by the zephyrs. And, above all, By the glorious strangers, With the thoughtful eyes. The swinging gait, And the sounding lips. As a king It summons each power Of terrestrial nature To numberless changes, And alone doth its presence Reveal the full splendor Of earth.
Sunk in deep vault; How dreary, forlorn her abode! Deep melancholy Stirs in the chords of the breast. Far-off memories. Wishes of youth. Far oflF lies the world With its motley of pleasures. Elsewhere doth the Hght Pitch its airy encampment. What if it never returned To its faithful children, To its gardens In its glorious house? Yet what flows so cool. So refreshing, So full of hid tidings To our hearts, And absorbs the soft air Of melancholy?
Hast thou too A human heart, O dark Night? What boldest thou Under thy mantle Which steals unseen Upon my soul, Giving it strength? Thou seemest but fearful- Precious balm Drops from thy hand. From the bundle of poppies. In sweet intoxication Thou unfoldest the soul's heavy wings, And givest us joys Dark, inexpressible. Secret as thou, Joys which are promise of heaven. How joyful and bless'd The departure of day. It is but because Night withdraws those who serve thee That thou sowest In the wide realms of space Shining spheres.
To proclaim in the times of thine absence Thine omnipotence, Thy returning again. More heavenly than those flashing stars In those wide spaces, Seem to us the infinite eyes Which the Night In us opens. Farther see they Than the palest Of that numberless host. Unneedful of light. They look through the depths Of a love-enfiUed heart Which fills with unspeakable joy A loftier space. Praise to the world's Queen! To the lofty proclaimer Of holy world, To the nurturer Of blissful love. Thou comest. The Night is here- Rapt away is my soul- Finished the earthly way. Once more art thou mine.
I gaze into the depths of thy dark eyes. See naught but love and bhssfulness therein; We sink upon Night's altar. Must ever the morning return? Endeth never the thraldom of earth? Unhallowed aflFairs swallow up The heavenly coming of Night? Will never love's offering bum Eternal and hid? To the light was appointed its time, A time to its watching— But timeless the rule of the Night; Without end the duration of sleep. Holy Sleepl Bless not too seldom Night's consecrated ones— In this earth's daily round. Only the foolish mistake thee And know of no sleep But the shadows, Which thou in compassion Castest upon us In that twilight Of the true Night.
They feel thee not In the golden flood of the grape, In the almond tree's Magic oil, In the brown juice of the poppy. They know not It is thou That hoverest over the breast Of the tender maiden, And makest her bosom a heaven— They guess not That out of old histories Thou comest to meet us. And bearest the key To the dwellings of the bless'd: A silent messenger Of infinite mysteries. Melancholy flowed into a new unfathomable world; thou, O inspiration of night, slumber of heaven, camest o'er me.
All that lay round me softly arose, and above it hovered my unbound, newly bom spirit. As a dust cloud became the mound; through the cloud I beheld the glorified features of the Be- loved. In her eyes rested eternity. I grasped her hands and my tears became a sparkling indestructible cord. Thousands of years drew away down into the distance as a thunder- storm. On her neck I wept enchanted tears for the new life.
That was the first dream in thee. It passed, but its image remained— the eternal, imshakable behef in the heaven of night, and its sim, the Beloved. IV Now know I when the last morning will be— when the Hght will no longer scare away love and the night, when slumber will be eternal and only one inexhaustible dream. Heavenly weariness deserts me now no more.
Long and toilsome was the way to the Holy Sepulchre, and the Cross was heavy. He whose lips have once been moistened by the NOVALIS 61 crystal wave which, unseen by common sight, has its source in the dark womb of the mound at whose foot breaks the earthly tide, he who has stood above upon this boundary of the world, and has looked across into the new land, into the dwelling place of the night— he, of a truth, turns not back to the aflFairs of the world in the land where light holds sway, and eternal unrest makes its home.
Up above he builds himself tabernacles, dwellings of peace, he longs and loves, gazes across, until the most welcome of all hours draws him down into the wells of the foimt. All that is earthly floats on the surface, and is washed down from the heights; but what has become holy through contact of love runs released into hidden ways in yonder realm, where cloudlike it mingles with the slumber-wrapped loved ones. Still thou awakest The weary to work, O cheerful Light— Thou inspirest me with joyful life.
But thou allurest me not From remembering That moss-grown monument. Canst thou show me An ever-true heart? Has thy sun Friendly eyes Which know me?
Do thy stars grasp My longing hand And give me in turn A tender pressure? Hast thou bedecked her With color And Hght outhne? Or was it she Who gave to thine adornment Higher and loveher meaning? What delight And what pleasures Offers thy life Which outweigh The enchantments of death? Doth not all that inspires us Bear the color of night? She beareth thee as a mother. And to her thou dost owe All of thy splendor. Thou wouldst vanish Into thyself, Thou wouldst dissolve Into endless space Did she not hold thee— Not bind thee, So that thou grewest warm.
And flaming Begottest the world. Verily I was, ere thou wert. Not yet have they ripened, Those thoughts of the gods. As yet are the traces but few In our age. One day thy clock will depict The ending of time. When thou wilt become As one of us, And full of longing. Melt away and die. Blessed return.
I discern thy removal In wild grief From our home. Thy resistance To the glorious Ancient heaven. In vain is thy fury. Thy raging. Indestructible Stands the Cross, Triumphant banner Of our race. I wander across And every pain Will turn to a pricking Of joy again. Unending life Comes over me, And I look from above Down below upon thee. Thy brightness fades On that httle hill, A shade is bringing The chaplet cool. Oh, drink. Beloved, Of me drink deep. That soon I be wrapped In eternal sleep. I feel death's encroaching. Youth-giving wave, And wait through life's stresses Full stalwart and brave.
Over the widespread race Of man There formerly ruled An iron destiny. With silent might. A dark and heavy band Lay round their Anxious souls. Infinite was the earth, Abode of the gods And their home. Rich in treasures And glorious wonders. Since eternity Stood her mysterious frame. An ancient giant Supported the blissful world.
And the befriended Joyful mankind. The dark blue depths Of the sea Was the womb of a goddess. Heavenly hosts Dwelt in joyful delight In the grottoes of crystal- Trees and brooks, Blossoms and beasts Had human sense; Sweeter tasted the wine. For a god in youthful bloom Gave it to man.
The full sheaves Of golden com Were divinely bestowed; The rapturous joys of love A sacred service To heavenly beauty. Thus was life An eternal festival Of gods and men. Only there was one thought Which frightful to the festive tables trod, And in wild panic fear all hearts enveiled. Here words of counsel even failed each god. Which with sweet comfort could their hearts have filled; Mysterious was this monster's dreadful road, Whose rage no gift, no anxious prayer availed— For it was Death, who this gay banquet scene Broke up in pain and tears and anguish keen.
Forever now from all things separated Which here do stir the heart in sweet delight— From loved ones parted, whom, down here, belated. Vain longings and an endless grief incite— Dull dream the lot to which the dead seemed fated, Unconscious struggling deemed their dreary plight. Broken and shattered was the wave of pleasure Upon the rock of misery without measure. With daring mind, and lofty feeling's zest, Did man embellish that grim mask unkind, A pale wan youth puts out the light to rest, Soft is the end, as harp strings touched by wind, And memory melts in shadow-flood at last: Thus poets eased the need of troubled mind.
Yet still unfathomed stayed eternal night. The solemn symbol of a far-off might. To its end inclined The ancient world. The happy garden Of the youthful race Withered away; Out into freer spaces Strove the full-grown, Unchildhke mankind. Laws arose, And in ideas As in dust and air Fell to pieces The measureless prime Of the thousandfold life. Fled away Were all-powerful faith And fantasy. All-transforming, AU-imiting, Heavenly comrade. Unfriendly blew A cold north wind Over the frozen plains, And the wonderland home Passed away in the ether.
The infinite distance Of heaven Was filled with shining worlds. Into a deeper sanctuary. Into the mind's higher realms. Drew the soul of the world With her powers. There to reign Till the new day Should break. The loftier world-glory. No longer was Hght The abode of the gods. And a heavenly token- Around them they drew The curtain of night.
In the midst of mankind. In a folk Despised above all. Too soon grown ripe, And proudly estranged From the blessed innocence Of youth. Before all others Did the eastern wisdom, Rich flowering, full of foreseeing. Know the approach Of the new age. A star pointed the way To the King's humble cradle.
In the name of the far future They paid him homage. With the splendor and perfumes Of the highest wonders of nature. Unfolded the heavenly heart In sohtude To a glowing bosom of love, Turned toward The Father's lofty countenance, And resting on the holy foreboding breast Of the gracious earnest Mother. With worshiping ardor The prophetic eye Of the blossoming child Looked into future times. Soon the most childhke natures, Wondrously gripped By the almighty love. Gathered aroimd him. A strange new life Flowered forth In his presence- Inexhaustible words. Most joyful of tidings. Fell hke sparks Of divine spirit From his gracious lips.
From far coasts, Bom under serene skies Of Hellas Came a singer To Palestine And surrendered his heart To the miraculous child: Thou art that youthful form our tombs display Standing above them, deep in contemplation, ConsoHng emblem in our darkest day Of higher manhood's joyful new foundation. What once had sunk us down, to grief a prey. Now draws us thence with longing's sweet elation. In Death was germ of hfe eternal found, Thyself art Death, and first doth make us sound. So that a thousand hearts Inchned themselves to him.
And the glad gospel Upward waxed Branching a thousandfold. But yet short time After the singer passed, The precious life Became a sacrifice For the deep fall of man- Young in years he died, Tom away From the loved world, From the weeping Mother, From his friends. The holy mouth Emptied the dark cup Of untold sorrow. In dreadful anguish Drew nigh to him the birth hour Of the new world.
Hard wrestled he with the horrors Of ancient death. Heavy upon him lay The weight of the old world. Once more he gently looked upon the Mother- Then came the loosening hand Of eternal love— And he fell asleep. Few were the days Hung a deep veil Over the roaring sea, over the dark heaving land. Uncounted tears Wept the beloved ones. Awaked to new godlike glory He ascended to the heights Of the rejuvenated, new-bom world. And the old world Which with him had died. With his own hand he bm'ied In the forsaken cave. And with almighty strength he laid above The stone which thence no power should ever move.
Still weep thy loved ones Tears of joy, Tears of emotion. And unending thanks Before thy grave— And ever still With shock of joy See thee ascend. Themselves with thee— See thee with ardor sweet Weep on the Mother's bosom And on the friends' true hearts. Hasten, filled with longing, Into the Father s arms, Bringing the young Childlike humanity And the inexhaustible draft Of the golden future. The Mother followed thee soon In heavenly tTiim:iph. She was the first In the new home At thy side.
Long ages Have flowed by since then. Thousands from pain and grief Draw nigh to thee Full of faith, longing, And fidehty, And rule with thee And the heavenly Virgin In the kingdom of love. And serve in the temple Of the heavenly death. Uplifted is the stone. Mankind is now arisen, We chng to thee alone, And feel no bond of prison. Death to the marriage calls, The lamps are shining steady. The virgins all are ready, No lack of oil befalls. Far distances are ringing With tidings of thy train! And stars the summons singing With human tongue and strain!
To thee, Maria, lifteth Of thousand hearts the plea. Whose hfe in shadow drifteth They long to come to thee. Consumed with bitter pain, This dreary earth-world spuming. Have turned to thee again. Their aid to us was given When pain and want befell. We join them now in heaven And ever with them dwell.
For none with faith who careth On grave need sorely grieve, The treasure that he loveth From him will none bereave. For angels true of heaven His heart in safety keep. His longing grief to leaven Inspireth night his sleep. Our life with courage ending Eternal life draws near, With inner glow expanding Transfigured sense grows clear. The star-world now is flowing As living golden wine, Its joys on us bestowing, Ourselves as stars shall shine. For love is freely given And partings ne'er may be. The flood of life is driven Like an unbounded sea- Unending night delights us. Eternity's romance.
And all the sim that lights us Is God's own countenance. Within a narrow boat we come And hasten to the heavenly home. All hail, then, to eternal night, All hail, eternal sleeping, Warmed have we been by daily light. Withered by grief's long weeping. Strange lands no longer joys arouse. We want to reach our Father s house. In this world's hfe what shall we do With love and faith devoted? What should we care about the new? The old is no more noted. Ohl lonely stands he, deeply sore. Whose love reveres the days of yore. The days of yore when, himian sense High flaming, brightly burning.
The Father's hand and countenance Mankind was still discerning. Many of higher senses ripe Resembled still their prototype. The days of yore, when ancient stem Bore many youthful flowers. And children craved the heavenly home Beyond life's anguished hours. And e'en when hfe and pleasure spake Love caused full many a heart to break. The days of yore, when God revealed Himself, young, ardent, glowing; To early death his life he sealed.
Deep love and courage showing. Sparing himself no painful smart, He grew still dearer to our heart. We must repair to heavenly place If we would see those sacred days. What then doth hinder our return? The loved ones long have slumbered, Their grave enfolds our life's concern, With anxious grief we're cumbered.
We have no more to seek down here. The heart wants naught, the world is bare. Eternal and from hidden spring A sweet shower through us streameth; An echo of our grief did ring From distance far, meseemeth; The loved ones have the same desire. And with their longing us inspire. O downward then to Bride so sweetl To Jesus, the Beloved!
A dream doth break our bonds apart. And sinks us on the Father's heart. Abwarts wend ich mich Zu der heiligen, unaussprechlichen Geheimnis- vollen Nacht— Fernab liegt die Welt, Wie versenkt in eine tiefe Gruft, Wie wiist und einsam ihre Stelle! Tiefe Wehmut Weht in den Saiten der Bnist. I Fernab liegt die Welt Mit ihren bunten Geniissen. Muss immer der Morgen wieder kommen? Endet nie deS Irdi- schen Gewalt? Zusam- men floss die Wehmut in eine neue unergriindUche Welt— du Nachtbegeisterung, Schliunmer des Himmels, kamst iiber mich.
Die Gegend hob sich sacht empor— iiber der Gegend schwebte mein entbundner, neugebomer Geist. In ihren Augen ruhte die Ewigkeit— ich fasste ihre Hande, und die Tranen wurden ein funkelndes, unzerreissliches Band. Jahrtausende zogen abwarts in die Feme, wie Ungewitter. An ihrem Halse weint'ich dem neuen Leben entziickende Tranen— das war der erste Traum in dir. Er zog voriiber, aber sein Abglanz blieb, der ewige, unerschiitterliche Glauben an den Nachthimmel und seine Sonne, die Geliebte.
IV Nun weiss ich, wenn der letzte Morgen sein wird— wenn das Licht nicht mehr die Nacht und die Liebe scheucht, wenn der Schlummer ewig, und ein unerschopflicher Traum sein wird. Himmlische Miidigkeit verlasst mich nun nicht wieder. Wessen Mund einmal die kristallene Woge netzte, die, gemeinen Sinnen unsichtbar, quillt in des Hiigels dunkelm Schoos, an dessen Fuss die irdische Flut bricht, wer oben stand auf diesem Grenzgebirge der Welt und hiniibersah in das neue Land, in der Nacht Wohnsitz; wahrlich, der kehrt nicht in das Treiben der Welt 2:iiriick, in das Land, wo das Licht regiert und ewige Unnih haust.
Oben baut er sich Hiitten, Hiitten des Frie- dens, sehnt sich und liebt, schaut hiniiber, bis die willkommenste aller Stunden hinunter ihn— in den Brunnen der Quelle zieht. AUes Irdische schwimmt obenauf und wird von der Hohe hinab- gespiilt, aber was heilig ward durch der Liebe Beriihrung, rinnt aufgelost in verborgnen Gangen auf das jenseitige Gebiet, wo es, wie Wolken, sich mit entschlummerten Lieben mischt.
Aber du lockst mich Von der Erinnerung Moosigem Denkmal nicht. Kannst du mir zeigen Ein ewig treues Herz? Hat deine Sonne Freund- liche Augen, Die mich erkennen? Fassen deine Sterne Meine verlangende Hand? Geben mir wieder Den zartlichen Druck? Oder war sie es, Die deinem Schmuck Hohere, liebere Be- deutung gab? Zu geben Menschlichen Sinn Deinen Schopfungen. Noch reiften sie nicht, Diese gottlichen Gedanken. Noch sind der Spuren Unsrer Gegenwart Wenig.
Umsonst ist deine Wut, Dein Toben. Reich an Kleinoden Und herrlichen Wundern. Seit Ewigkeiten Stand ihr geheimnisvoller Ban. Ein alter Riese Trug die sehge Welt. I Gesetze wurden. Bald sammelten die kindlichsten Gemiiter, Von allmachtiger Liebe Wundersam ergriffen, j Sich um ihn her. Im Tode ward das ew'ge Leben kund, Du bist der Tod und machst uns erst gesund. Der Sanger zog Vol! Entsiegelt ward das Geheimnis. Gehoben ist der Stein. Die Menschheit ist erstanden. Wir alle bleiben dein Und fiihlen keine Banden. So manche, die sich gliihend In bittrer Qual verzehrt Und dieser Welt entfliehend Nur dir sich zugekehrt; Die hilfreich uns erschienen In mancher Not und Pein— Wir konimen nun zu ihnen, Um ewig da zu sein.
Nun weint an keinem Grabe Fiir Schmerz, wer liebend glaubt. I Der Liebe siisse Habe Wird keinem nicht geraubt. I Wir kommen in dem engen Kahn Geschwind am Him- melsufer an. Wir miissen nach der Heimat gehn, Um diese heil'ge Zeit zu sehn. Was halt noch unsre Riickkehr auf— Die Liebsten ruhn schon lange. Ihr Grab schliesst unsern Lebenslauf, Nun wird uns weh und bange. Zu suchen haben wir nichts mehr— Das Herz ist satt, die Welt ist leer. Die Lieben sehnen sich wohl auch Und sandten uns der Sehn- sucht Hauch. Though all are faithless growing. Yet will I faithful be.
That one on earth is showing His thankfulness to Thee. For me Thou cam'st to suffer For me Thou had'st to smart. And now with joy I offer To Thee my thankful heart. Forgot and passed Thee by. With naught but love unsparing Thou cam'st for them and me. They let Thee die, uncaring. And thought no more of Thee. Yet true love ever winneth, At last the world will see.
When weeping each one cHngeth, A child before Thy knee. When now at last I find Thee, O leave me not alone! But ever closer bind me And let me be Thine ownl My brothers too, beholding, Will soon in Heav'n find rest. And then Thy love enfolding Will sink upon Thy breast. Wenn alle untreu werden, So bleib ich dir doch treu, Dass Dankbarkeit auf Erden Nicht ausgestorben sei. Oft muss ich bitter weinen, Dass du gestorben bist Und mancher von den Deinen Dich lebenslang vergisst. Von Liebe nur durchdrungen, Hast du so viel getan, Und doch bist du verklungen, Und keiner denkt daran.
Du stehst vol! Ich habe dich empfunden, OI lasse nicht von mir; Lass innig mich verbunden Auf ewig sein mit dir. So heavy grows our cheer. When all from far o'erpowers Our hearts with ghostly fear. There come wild terrors creeping With stealthy silent tread, And night's dark mantle sweeping O'erweighs the soul with dread. Our pillars strong are shaking. No hold remaineth sure, Our thoughts in whirlpools breaking Obey our will no more. Then madness comes and claims us And none withstands his will, A senses' dullness maims us, The pulse of life stands still. Who raised the Cross, bestowing A refuge for each heart?
Who lives in heaven all-knowing And healeth pain and smart? Go thou where stands that Wonder And to thy heart give ear. His flames shall force asunder And quell thy nightmare fear. An angel bendeth o'er thee And bears thee to the strand. And, filled with joy, before thee Thou seest the Promised Land.
Der Wahnsinn naht und locket Unwiderstehlich bin. Der Puis des Lebens stocket, Und stumpf ist jeder Sinn. Wer hat das Kreuz erhoben Zum Schutz f iir jedes Herz? Wer wohnt im Himmel droben Und hilft in Angst und Schmerz? Ein Engel zieht dich wieder Gerettet auf den Strand, Und schaust vol!
Freuden nieder I In das Gelobte Land. When in sad and weary hour Dark despair hath cast its gloom; When overwhelmed by sickness' power Fears our inmost soul consume; When we think of our beloved Bowed with sorrow and with grief; All our heav'ns with clouds are covered Not one hope can bring relief.
God then bendeth to receive us. With his love he draweth near; When we long for life to leave us Then his angel doth appear; Brings the cup of life, restoring Strength and comfort from above; Not in vain our prayers imploring Peaceful rest for those we love. Brentano seems to have inherited the restlessness and effervescence of both the Brentanos and the Laroches. His interest was probably stimu- lated by Percy's Reliques of Ancient Poetry.
In Brentano married the poetess Sophie M6reau but she died only three years later. His second marriage was unhappy, and he drifted, in the course of time, toward the pious eighteen-year-old Luise Hensel, whom he wooed in vain and who brought him back to the Catholic fold His hterary activities then came to an end, save for recording the visions of the stigmatized nun Anna Katharina Emmerick. Brentano's claim to immortality rests primarily on his sweetly cadenced lyrics and his tales, such as "The Story of the Just Casper and Fair Annie" , rich in the imaginative charm of folklore.
Shall touch no child to grieve it. Simplicity hath sown the seeds, Sadness passed through it with its breath. And longing has achieved it. And is the harvest once cut down, Poverty gleans the stubble, Seeks ears that have been left unseen. Seeks love that for her long went down. Seeks love with her to rise again. Seeks love that it may love her. And has she, lonely and disdained. Throughout the night with prayer and thanks Rubbed the corn from its casing- She reads, at cockcrow's break of day, Words that hold love, blow grief away. O echo, tell Where Hstenest thou Who understands my lay?
O echoing sound, O singst thou her The dreams I Hke the most. The ballads all bring them her Whom I so early losti Deep in my heart The rustling wood Wherein my love doth stray; In sorrows slept The echoing sound. The tunes have blown away. In woodland am 1 so alone, O dearest, come to me; Though many a song Away has flown.
For everything goes by! Yet that I rose again And as her planet e'er must circle round, A spirit, whom she charmed, That goes not byl Yes, everything goes by! Only this wonder-band From out my being's deepest ground To her own spirit spanned, That goes not by! Yes, everything goes byl Yet pledge from gracious hands.
Each innocent dear word of hers Follow to other lands And go not by! Yes, everything goes by! Yet she, who understood The waiting one, with place and hour unfomid. She went not by, she stood, Gives me her hand! Yes, everything goes byl One thing alone is sure, The promise which from out her heart's deep groimd The precious child did send, That doth endure!
Denn alles geht vorbeil Doch dass ich auferstand Und wie ein Irrstern ewig sie umrunde, Ein Geist, den sie gebannt, Das hat Bestandl Ja, alles geht vorbei! And the fountains plash and glistenl Music drifts in golden rains; Softly, softly let us listenl Gentle-pleading, mild desire Sweetly tells the heart its plightl Through the darkness, bright as fire, Gleams upon me— music's light.
Golden wehn die Tone nieder, Stille, stille, lass uns lau- schen! Holdes Bitten, mild Verlangen, Wie es siiss zum Herzen spricht! It told a sweeter tale When our two hearts were one. I sing; I cannot weep; I turn my wheel, and there The strand gleams pure and clear While moonbeams vigil keep. When our two hearts were one. Of joy sang the nightingale; Now all its changeful tale Is but that thou art gone. God yield us joy again! Since thou from me art gone, The ceaseless nightingale sings And restless memories brings Of how two hearts made one. God yield us joy! No sleep Is mine; I spin while here Moonlight streams pure and clear.
I sing; I fain would weep. Ich sing' und kann nicht weinen Und spinne so allein [ Den Faden, klar und rein, So lang der Mond wird scheinen. Da wir zusammen waren, Da sang die Nachtigall, Nun mah- net mich ihr Schall, Dass du von mir gefahren. Gott woUe uns vereinen, [ Hier spinn' ich so allein, Der Mond scheint klar und rein, Ich sing' und mochte weinen!
Learn its cadence from the moon. Is he not Tristan's dearest friend? If my beloved cannot be with me, then he is only in Melot's company. From Tristan to Mark is Melot's path: there he sows malignant seeds.
Those who decided today on this night hunt, so promptly and quickly planned, have a nobler quarry than you imagine as the target of their huntsmen's cunning. Do you now scold this faithful friend? Better than you does he care for me; to him he opens up what you bar to me. Oh, spare me the distress of further delay! The signal, Brangaene! Oh, give the signal! Extinguish the light's last glimmer! That it may fall completely, give Night its signal! Ist er nicht Tristans treuester Freund? Muss mein Trauter mich meiden, dann weilt er bei Melot allein.
Nun willst du den Treuen schelten? O gib das Zeichen! Dass ganz sie sich neige, winke der Nacht. Schon goss sie ihr Schweigen through the groves and the house, already it fills the heart with ecstatic terror! Oh, extinguish the light now, extinguish its dread rays! Let my beloved come! Ah, alas! How wretched I am! The hapless potion! That, unfaithful just once, I betrayed my mistress's will!
Had I obeyed, deaf and blind, your work would have been death! But your disgrace, your ignominious distress are my work, and I, the guilty one, must know it! Oh, foolish maid! Do you not know the Love Spirit, not know her magic's power? The Queen of boldest courage, Regent of the world's course?
Love and Death are subject to her, she weaves them out of bliss and sorrow, transmuting envy into love. Death's work, upon which I audaciously embarked, the Love Spirit wrested it from my power. She took the girl destined for death under her sway and took her work into her own hands. However she performed it, however she completes it, wherever she may choose for me, wherever she may lead me, I became subject to her.
Now let me display my obedience! Lass meinen Liebsten ein! O wehe! Ach mir Armen! Des unseligen Trankes! Dass ich untreu einmal nur der Herrin Willen trog! Gehorcht' ich taub und blind, dein Werk war dann der Tod. Frau Minne kenntest du nicht? Nicht ihres Zaubers Macht? Die Todgeweihte nahm sie in Pfand, fasste das Werk in ihre Hand. The gleaming signal of danger, oh, not now, do not extinguish the torch now! The will of the Love Spirit is - let it be night, that brightly she may shine forth, She hurries to the torch where she shuns your light! She takes the torch from the doorway To the tower with you!
Keep careful watch!
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This light, were it the light of my life, laughing, I do not hesitate to extinguish it. She throws the torch to the ground where it gradually dies out Brangaene turns away in dismay to climb an outside stairway to the tower, where she gradually disappears from sight Isolde listens and looks, timidly at first, along an avenue of trees. Moved by a growing desire she approaches the trees and looks more carefully.
She waves with a kerchief, a little at first, then, with passionate impatience, more and more quickly A gesture of sudden delight proclaims that she has noticed her beloved in the distance. Der Gefahr leuchtendes Licht, nur heute, heut'! At last! Is it you? You, clasped in my arms? No illusion? O heart's rapture, o sweet, most sublime, boldest, loveliest, most blessed joy! Bist du's? Halt ich dich fest? Ist es kein Trug?
Never yet known! My Tristan mine! Mine and yours! Ever, ever one! My Isolde mine! Away for so long! So near yet how far! Tristan mein! Mein und dein! Ewig, ewig ein! Isolde mein! Wie fern so lang! So nah wie weit! Drawn-out time's lingering expanse! Sweet nearness! Desolate distance! The light! Oh, this light, how long before it was extinguished!
The sun set, Day ran its course but it would not stifle its spite: lighting its dread signal it places it at the loved one's door so that I might not go to her. For Day, for spiteful Day, the most bitter foe, hatred and grievance! Just as you extinguished the light, would that I could extinguish the light of insolent Day to avenge the pangs of love! Is there any distress, is there any anguish which it does not revive with its beams?
Hart entzweite! Das Licht! O dieses Licht, wie lang verlosch es nicht! Gibt's eine Not, gibt's eine Pein, die er nicht weckt mit seinem Schein? Selbst in der Nacht darkling glory my beloved harbours it in her house, letting its threatening beams fall towards me. ISOLDE Is your beloved keeps it in her own house, so did my love once defiantly foster it in his heart, bright and devious: Tristan, he that betrayed me!
Was it not Day that made him false when he came to Ireland as a suitor to court me for King Mark, to dedicate loyalty to Death? Which shimmered round about you, to there where she seemed like the sun in highest honour's radiant glow, Isolde withdrew from me! That which so delighted my eye made my heart sink to the depths of the earth: in the bright light of Day how could Isolde be mine? What lies did evil Day tell you that you betrayed your dearest, she that was destined to be yours?
TRISTAN In the grip of madness I could not but yeld my heart to that which shimmered round about you in majestic splendour, the glitter of honour and the power of renown. Die mit des Schimmers hellstem Schein shining upon me with the brightest radiant glow, penetrated my head with its beams of vain bliss and reached the deepest recesses of my heart. What lay there darkly concealed in chaste night, what I dimly perceived, not knowing, not imagining; a form, which my eyes could not believe they saw, caught in the light of Day, lay there gleaming before me.
Before the whole throng I praised in clear tones what seemed to me so glorious and sublime; before all the people I extolled aloud the loveliest royal bride on earth. I bade defiance to the envy which Day awakened in me, to the zeal which threatened my happiness, to the jealousy which began to make honour and fame a burden to me, and firmly resolved to uphold honour and glory, to go to Ireland. Deceived by that which deceived you, how I, loving you, suffered on your account; caught in Day's false glitter, in the snare of its cunning, in the depths of my heart, where burning love encompassed him, I hated him bitterly.
Ah, what piercing pain in the recesses of my heart! How hard he whom I secretly harboured there must have thought me when, in the light of Day my faithfully cherished one vanished to loving eyes and stood before me only as a foe! From the light of Day which made you appear to me a traitor I wished to flee into Night, to take you with me, where my heart would bid me end all deception, where the vain premonition of treachery might be dispelled, there to pledge to you eternal love, to consecrate you to Death in company with myself.
TRISTAN When I recognised sweet death offered to me at your hand; when a bold and clear presentiment showed me what expiation demanded; there dawned gently in my heart the lofty power of Night; my Day was then accomplished. Hail to the draught! Hail to its magic's sublime power! Heil seinem Saft! Heil seines Zaubers hehrer Kraft! Durch des Todes Tor, wide and open it flowed towards me opening up the wondrous realm of Night where I had only been in dreams. From the image in my heart's sheltering cell it repelled day's deceiving beams, so that in darkness my eyes might serve to see it clearly.
ISOLDE Yet banished Day avenged itself; with yours sins it took counsel; what darkling Night showed you you had to surrender to the regal power of the Day-star, to live alone, gleaming there in solitary splendour. How could I bear it? How can I endure it now? Spiteful Day with ready envy could part us with its tricks but no longer mislead us with guile. Its vain glory, its flaunting display are mocked by those to whom Night has granted sight.
The fleeting flashes of its flickering light no longer dazzle us. Wie ertrug ich's nur? Wie ertrag ich's noch? Amid the vain fancy of Day he still harbours one desire - the yearning for sacred Night where, all-eternal, true alone, love's bliss smiles on him! Night soon melts away. Tristan's love? Habet acht! Bald entweicht die Nacht. Tristans Liebe? Yours and mine, Isolde's love? What strokes of death could ever make it yeld? If mighty Death stood before me threatening the very life in my body which I would so gladly leave for love, how could it reach love itself?
Were I to give my life to that for which I would so gladly die, how could love die with me, the ever-living end with me? And if his love were never to die how could Tristan die of his love? This sweet little word: and , would death not destroy the bonds of love which it entwines if Tristan were to die? Tristan with a meaningful gesture, gently draws Isolde to him Dein' und mein', Isoldes Liebe? Night soon gives way to Day. Schon weicht dem Tag die Nacht. Gloriously sublime Night of love! Those whom you have embraced, upon whom you have smiled, how could they ever waken without fear?
Now banish dread, sweet death, yearned for, longed for death-in-love! In your arms, consecrated to you, sacred elemental quickening force, free from the peril of waking! How to grasp it, how to leave it, this bliss far from the sun's, far from Day's parting sorrows! Free from delusion gentle yearning, free from fearing sweet longing. Free from sighing sublime expiring. Free from languishing enclosed in sweet darkness.
No evasion no parting, just we alone, ever home, in unmeasured realms of ecstatic dreams. Hehr erhabne Liebesnacht! Nun banne das Bangen, holder Tod, sehnend verlangter Liebestod! In deinen Armen, dir geweiht, urheilig Erwarmen, von Erwachens Not befreit! Kurwenal, Brangaene, Mark, Melot and Courtiers.
Brangaene emits a shrill cry. Horrified, he casts a glance offstage. Mark, Melot and courtiers in hunting dress come rapidly from the avenue of trees and stop in horror at the sight of the lovers. Brangaene climbs down from the tower and runs to Isolde. Isolde, involuntarily seized by a sense of shame, leans back, her face turned aside, on the flowery bank. Tristan, also in spite of himself, raises his cloak on his arm so that it conceals Isolde from the sight of those just arrived. He remains in this position for a long period, unmoving, his cold gaze fixed on the men who, in various attitudes, fasten their eyes on him.
To give you my pledge with my head as the bond? I have shown him to you in the very act; your name and honour I have loyally preserved from disgrace. MARK in a state of profound shock, in a trembling voice Have you indeed? Is that what you think? Look at him there, the most faithful of the loyal. Cast your eyes upon him, the dearest of friends.
His loyalty's freest deed pierced my heart with its hostile treachery! If Tristan betrayed me, am I to hope that what his treachery has cost me should by Melot's counsel honestly be restored to me? Fantastic dream! Deceitful and desolate! Fade away! Give way! MARK deeply affected This to me? This, Tristan, to me? Whither has loyalty fled now that Tristan has betrayed me? Das dir zum Pfand ich gab, ob ich mein Haupt gewahrt? Ich zeigt' ihn dir in offner Tat: Namen und Ehr' hab ich getreu vor Schande dir bewahrt. Sieh ihn dort, den treuesten aller Treuen; blick auf ihn, den freundlichsten der Freunde: seiner Treue freister Tat traf mein Herz mit feindlichstem Verrat!
Dies, Tristan, mir? Wohin nun Ehr' and honesty, now that the champion of all honour, Tristan, has lost it? As Tristan appointed himself its emblem, where has virtue flown to, fleeing from my friend, from Tristan, who has betrayed me? Tristan slowly lowers his gaze; while Mark continues there can be read in his expression growing sadness Why did you serve me for so long?
Why the reputation of honour, the power and greatness which you won for King Mark? Did the honour and renown, greatness and power, the services beyond number, have to be repaid by Mark's dishonour? Did you value so lightly his gratitude which gave you as your very own inheritance that which you had won for him, his renown and his Kingdom? When, childless, his wife died, he loved you so much that never again did Mark intend to wed. When all the people from court and country thronged to him, begging and imploring him to give the country a queen and to take for himself a wife; when you yourself swore to your uncle that you would carry out the wishes of the court and the will of the country, then, against the wishes of court and country, in opposition even to you, with circumspection and kindness he declined until you, Tristan, threatened und echte Art, da aller Ehren Hort, da Tristan sie verlor?
Die Tristan sich zum Schild erkor, wohin ist Tugend nun entflohn, da meinen Freund sie flieht, da Tristan mich verriet? And so he let it be. This glorious woman that your courage won for me, who could behold her, who could know her, who could proudly call her his own and not think himself blessed?
She, whom I could never dare approach, she for whom I foreswore my desires in bashful reverence, so splendid, so lovely, so sublime, who could not but refresh my soul, despite enemies and dangers this royal bride you presented to me. Now, since by such a possession you rendered my heart more open to pain than before, there, where I was rendered soft, sensitive and exposed was I stricken without hope that I might ever be healed. Why so sorely, wretched man, did you wound me there now? There, with the weapon of tormenting poison, searing and maiming my senses and my mind so that my fidelity to my friend is stifled, my open heart filled with suspicion, so that now, secretly and in the dead of night I creep up on you, my friend, eavesdropping, and see my honour ended?
No heaven will redeem it for me - why this hell for me? The uncharted depths of its mysterious causes, who will make them known to the world? He turns to Isolde who looks up at him longingly Wherever Tristan now goes will you, Isolde, follow him? To that land of which Tristan spoke, where the sun's light does not shine; it is the dark land of Night out of which my mother sent me when he, whom she bore on her deathbed, left her in death to reach the light. From that which, when she bore me, was her fortress of love, the wondrous realm of Night, I then awoke.
That is what Tristan offers you, thither he will precede you. Whether she will follow him in grace and faith, let Isolde now tell him. Now you are returning to your own estates to show me your inheritance; how could I flee that land that spans the whole world? Wherever Tristan's home may be, there let Isolde go, there let her follow him in grace and faith, warum mir diese Schmach?
Den unerforschlich tief geheimnisvollen Grund, wer macht der Welt ihn kund? Was, da sie mich gebar, ihr Liebesberge war, das Wunderreich der Nacht, aus der ich einst erwacht; das bietet dir Tristan, dahin geht er voran: ob sie ihm folge treu und hold, - das sag' ihm nun Isold'! Wo Tristans Haus und Heim, da kehr Isolde ein: auf dem sie folge treu und hold, so now show Isolde the way! Tristan bends over her and kisses her gently on the forehead. To vengeance, King! Will you suffer this shame? He fixes his gaze on Melot This was my friend, exalted and dear was his devotion to me; for my honour and reputation none was more concerned than he.
To impetuousness he drove my heart; he led the crowd that urged me to add to my honour and renown and to give you to the King as bride! The sight of you, Isolde, blinded him too. Out of jealousy I was betrayed by my friend to the King, whom I had betrayed. He strides up to Melot Defend yourself, Melot! As Melot raises his sword towards him, Tristan lowers his and falls wounded into Kurwenal's arms.
Isolde falls upon his breast. Mark holds Melot back. Duldest du diese Schmach? Er heftet den Blick auf Melot Mein Freund war der, er minnte mich hoch und teuer; um Ehr' und Ruhm mir war er besorgt wie keiner.
Er dringt auf Melot ein Wehr dich, Melot! Castle garden. At one side a tall castle building, at the other a low parapet with a look-out post; upstage the castle gate. The location can be seen as being a rock height; through openings the sea and the distant horizon can be seen. The whole scene conveys an impression of being deserted, ill-tended, here and there in poor repair and overgrown.
Downstage, inside the wall, Tristan is lying in the shade of a tall lime-tree, asleep on a couch, laid out as if lifeless. At his head sits Kurwenal, bent over him in anguish and carefully listening to his breathing. As the curtain goes up there can be heard from outside the gate a shepherd playing a sad, yearning tune on a reed-pipe. Im Vordergrunde, an der inneren Seite, liegt Tristan, unter dem Schatten einer grossen Linde, auf einem Ruhebett schlafend, wie leblos ausgestreckt.
Listen, Kurwenal! Hear, my friend! Kurwenal partly turns his head towards him Is he still not awake? KURWENAL sadly shaking his head Were he to waken it would only be to depart for ever, if she, the healer, does not first appear, the only one who can succour us. Have you seen nothing yet?
Still no ship out at sea? Now, tell me truly, my old friend, what ails our lord? You can never know. Keep a sharp look-out, and if you see a ship play merrily and clearly! Sag, Kurwenal! Kurwenal wendet ein wenig das Haupt nach ihm Wacht er noch nicht? Kein Schiff noch auf der See? Nun sag auch ehrlich, alter Freund: was hat's mit unserm Herrn? Why does it waken me? That voice! His voice!
My lord! My hero! My tristan! Life, oh life, sweet life, restored to my Tristan! Where have I been? Where am I? In peace, safe and free, in Kareol, my lord! Do you not recognise the castle of your fathers? Diese Stimme! Seine Stimme! Tristan, Herre! Mein Held! Mein Tristan! Leben, o Leben! Wo war ich? Wo bin ich? In Frieden, sicher und frei! Yours is the house, court and castle! The people, loyal to their dear lord, as well as they could manage, have looked after the house and court which once my lord, as their very own heritage, granted to the people when he left it all behind to travel to a foregin land.
To Cornwall; bravely and gaily, what glory, fortune and honour Tristan my hero won for himself there! How did you get here? You didn't come on horseback; a boat brought you here. Dein das Haus, Hof und Burg! Das Volk, getreu dem trauten Herrn, so gut es konnt', hat's Haus und Hof gepflegt, das einst mein Held zu Erb' und Eigen an Leut' und Volk verschenkt, als alles er verliess, in fremde Land' zu ziehn. Wie du kamst? Now you are home, at home in your own country; really at home in your mother country; amidst your own meadows and delights, in the light of the old sun where from death and from your wounds you will blessedly be healed.
I know differently but I am not able to tell you. Where I awoke, there I was not, but where I was I cannot tell you. I did not see the sun, nor did I see land and people; but what I did see I cannot tell you. I was where I had been before I was and where I am destined to go, in the wide realm of the Night of the world. But one certain knowledge is ours there: divine, eternal utter oblivion. How did I cease to perceive it? Yearning remembrance did I call you, driving me on anew towards the light of Day. The one thing that I remembered, a warm and ardent love drives me from the terror of Death's bliss to see the Light, which, deceiving, bright and golden, still shines about you, Isolde!
Kurwenal, in the grip of terror, hides his face. Tristan gradually raises himself up Isolde still trug ich dich; - die sind breit: sie trugen dich dort zum Strand. Nun bist du daheim, daheim zu Land: im echten Land, im Heimatland; auf eigner Weid' und Wonne, im Schein der alten Sonne, darin von Tod und Wunden du selig sollst gesunden. Ich weiss es anders, doch kann ich's dir nicht sagen.
Wo ich erwacht, - weilt' ich nicht; doch, wo ich weilte, das kann ich dir nicht sagen. Die Sonne sah ich nicht, noch sah ich Land und Leute: doch, was ich sah, das kann ich dir nicht sagen. Ich war, wo ich von je gewesen, wohin auf je ich geh': im weiten Reich der Weltennacht. Kurwenal birgt, von Grausen gepackt, sein Haupt. In the shimmer of Day still, Isolde! What longing! What fearing! To see her, what desire!
The crash that I heard behind me was Death's door closing: now once more it stands wide open, the sun's beams have burst it open; with wide open eyes I had to emerge from Night to seek her, to see her; to find her, in her alone to expire, to vanish has it been granted to Tristan. Alas, there now rise up within me, pale and fearful, Day's wild urgings; baleful and deceiving its orb rouses my mind to deceit and folly! Accursed Day with your light! Will you for ever be witness to my anguish? Will it burn for ever, this Light, which even at night kept me from her?
Ah, Isolde, sweet beauty! When at last, when, oh when will you extinguish the spark, that I may know my fortune?
Meaning of "Hilke" in the German dictionary
The light - when will it be extinguished? He sinks back, exhausted When will Night come to the house? Im Tagesschimmer noch Isolde! Welches Sehnen! Welches Bangen! Sie zu sehen, welch Verlangen! Verfluchter Tag mit deinem Schein! Wachst du ewig meiner Pein? Brennt sie ewig, diese Leuchte, die selbst nachts von ihr mich scheuchte? Belive what I say: you shall see her here this very day; that consolation I can give you - if she is still alive herself. Isolde still lives and keeps watch; she called me out of the Night.
Even if you think Kurwenal is foolish, today you will not scold him. As if dead you lay there since that day when Melot, the villain, dealt you a wound. That evil wound, how to heal it? To me, simple that I am, it rather seems that she who once before eased for you the torment of Morold's wound, she could easily heal the torment of Melot's sword. The best physician [Isolde] I soon discovered: to Cornwall I have sent word; a faithful man is bringing Isolde here across the sea. Glaub' meinem Wort: du sollst sie sehen hier und heut; den Trost kann ich dir geben - ist sie nur selbst noch am Leben.
Muss Kurwenal dumm dir gelten, heut' sollst du ihn nicht schelten. Wie tot lagst du seit dem Tag, da Melot, der Verruchte, dir eine Wunde schlug. Isolde approaches! He struggles for the words Oh faith! Bold, sweet faith! He embraces Kurwenal My Kurwenal, dearest friend! Unshakeably faithful, how is Tristan to thank you? My shield and my guard in battle and strife, in merrymaking and sorrow always by my side.
He that I hated, you hated too. Him I worshipped, you worshipped too. To the good King Mark, when I served him well, you were truer than Gold! When I had to betray that noble lord, how glad you were to betray him too! This fearful longing that sears me; this languishing flame that consumes me; were I to give you its name, could you know it, you would not tarry here, you would hurry away to keep watch - with all your senses longing to get away to keep careful watch for their billowing sails before the wind where, aflame with the urgings of love, to find me, Isolde is sailing towards me.
It approaches! Isolde naht! Er ringt gleichsam nach Sprache O Treue! Hehre, holde Treue! Er zieht Kurwenal an sich und umarmt ihn Mein Kurwenal, du trauter Freund! Du Treuer ohne Wanken, wie soll dir Tristan danken? Mein Schild, mein Schirm in Kampf und Streit, zu Lust und Leid mir stets bereit: wen ich gehasst, den hasstest du; wen ich geminnt, den minntest du. Dem guten Marke, dient' ich ihm hold, wie warst du ihm treuer als Gold!
Musst' ich verraten den edlen Herrn, wie betrogst du ihn da so gern! Dir nicht eigen, einzig mein, mit leidest du, wenn ich leide: nur was ich leide; das kannst du nicht leiden! Es naht speedy and brave! It waves, it waves, the flag on the mast. The ship! There it goes past the reef! Can't you see it? As Kurwenal hesitates, so as not to leave Tristan, and the latter looks at him, silent and tense, there sounds out, as before, at first near by and then in the distance the plaintive tune of the shepherd KURWENAL disheartened Still no ship in sight!
TRISTAN has been listening with failing enthusiasm, now with growing melancholy Must I understand you thus, you ancient, solemn tune with your plaintive tones? Through the evening air it came, fearfully, as once it brought news to the child of his father's death. Through the grey light of morning, ever more fearful, as the son became aware of his mother's lot. As he begat me and died, so, dying, she bore me. That ancient tune of anxious yearning sounded its lament to them too, asking me then, and asking me now, for what fate was I then born?
For what fate? The ancient tune tells me once more: to yearn - and to die! Ah, no! That is not it! While dying to yearn, but not to die of yearning! Never dying, yearning, calling out mit mutiger Hast! Sie weht, sie weht - die Flagge am Mast. Das Schiff! Dort streicht es am Riff! Siehst du es nicht? Zu welchem Los? Die alte Weise sagt mir's wieder: mich sehnen - und sterben! Ach nein! So heisst sie nicht! Im Sterben mich zu sehnen, vor Sehnsucht nicht zu sterben!
Die nie erstirbt, sehnend nun ruft for the peace of death to the far-away physician. Dying I lay in the boat, silent, the wound's poison near my heart: in plaintive yearning the tune sounded forth; the wind blew the sail towards Ireland's child. The wound which she closed, with the sword she opened up again; but then, the sword, she lowered it; the poison draught she gave me to drink; as I hoped fully to be healed by it, then was the most searing magic unleashed: that I might never die but inherit eternal torment!
The draught! The fearful draught! From my heart to my brain it forced its furious way! No healing, no sweet death can ever release me from yearning's distress; never, ah never shall I find peace: Night casts me out into Day, ever to feed my sorrows in the sight of the sun. Oh, this sun's searing rays, how my head burns from its scorching torture! For the burning longing of this heat ah, no shade's dark concealment! For the burning longing's terrible torment what ointment could bring me ease? Die Wunde, die sie heilend schloss, riss mit dem Schwert sie wieder los; das Schwert dann aber - liess sie sinken; den Gifttrank gab sie mir zu trinken: wie ich da hoffte ganz zu genesen, da ward der sehrendste Zauber erlesen: dass nie ich sollte sterben, mich ew'ger Qual vererben!
Der Trank! Der furchtbare Trank! Den furchtbaren Trank, that brings me anguish, I, I myself, I prepared it! From my father's distress and mother's anguish, from tears of love everlasting, from laughing and weeping, happiness and hurts, I found the poisonous draught!
What I had prepared flowed towards me; devouring it blissfully I enjoyed it - be accursed, fearful draught! Cursed be he that prepared you! Dreadful Magic! Love's deception! Passion's urgings! The world's loveliest delusion, what has happened to you? Here he lies, the splendid man, loved and adored as no other. See now what thanks Love has won for him, the thanks that love always wins! Are you still alive? Has the curse borne you away? He listens for his breath O joy! He is moving, he is alive! How gently he moves his lips! Can't you see it yet? Verflucht, wer dich gebraut! Schrecklicher Zauber!
O Minnetrug! O Liebeszwang! Der Welt holdester Wahn, wie ist's um dich getan! Hier liegt er nun, der wonnige Mann, der wie keiner geliebt und geminnt. Nun seht, was von ihm sie Dankes gewann, was je Minne sich gewinnt! Lebst du noch? Er lauscht seinem Atem O Wonne! Er regt sich, er lebt! Siehst du's noch nicht? Of course, it will be here today!
It can't be far off now. Can you see her? Can't you see her yet, as she sweetly, bravely and gently wanders across the watery plains? On soft waves of blissful flowers she gently comes into land. She smiles at me, giving comfort and sweet peace, she brings me my last refreshment. Ah, Isolde! How lovely you are! And Kurwenal, tell me, do you not see her?
Go and keep watch, foolish wretch! What I can see so bright and clear, do not let it escape you! Can you not hear me? Quickly, to the lookout! Quickly, keep watch! Are you still there? The ship? Isolde's ship? You must see it! Must see it! While Kurwenal, hesitating, restrains Tristan, the shepherd sounds his pipe. Wie sie selig, hehr und milde wandelt durch des Meers Gefilde? Auf wonniger Blumen lichten Wogen kommt sie sanft ans Land gezogen. Ach, Isolde, Isolde! Was so hell und licht ich sehe, dass das dir nicht entgehe! Zur Warte schnell! Eilig zur Warte! Bist du zur Stell'? Das Schiff?
Isoldens Schiff? Du musst es sehen! Musst es sehen! He leaps to the lookout post and gazes out to sea Ah! I can see it approaching from the north! Didn't I say that she was still alive, sustaining life in me? As the only thing it holds for me, how could Isolde have departed the world?
How bravely it sails! How the sails are filled! How it streaks along, how it flies! The flag? The flag of joy! In the clear light of Day, to me, Isolde! Isolde, to me! Can you see Isolde herself? Von Norden seh' ich's nahen. Sagt' ich's nicht? Wie es mutig steuert! Wie es jagt, wie es fliegt! Die Flagge? Der Freude! Hell am Tage zu mir Isolde!
Isolde zu mir! Siehst du sie selbst? Is it in danger? There, in the turbulent current, ships are wrecked. Who is at the helm? Wretched man! Can you see her yet? Safely through! All my goods and possessions I bequeath this day! Can you see Isolde? She is waving! Bringt es Gefahr? Siehst du sie wieder? Hei ha ha ha! Kurwenal, treuester Freund! All mein Hab' und Gut vererb ich noch heute. Siehst du Isolde? Sie winkt! Isolde - ah, with a single bound she is leaping ashore!
Help her! Help my lady! But you, Tristan, promise to stay on your couch. Isolde, ha! Mit einem Sprung springt sie vom Bord ans Land. Hinab an den Strand! Hilf ihr! Hilf meiner Frau! Doch du, Tristan, bleib mir treulich am Bett! This Day! Ah, this joy's sunniest day! Coursing blood, rejoicing spirit! Bliss beyond bounds, joyful delirium! Confined to my bed, how can I bear it! Up then and onwards to where hearts are beating! Tristan the hero, rejoicing in his strength has snatched himself back from death.
He raises himself up With bleeding wound I once battled with Morold, with bleeding wound I now pursue Isolde! He tears the dressing from his wound Ah, my blood! Cheerily flow, my blood! He leaps from his bed and staggers forward She who my wound will finally heal, like a hero approaches, she approaches, my salvation! Let the world perish before my rejoicing haste! Ha, dieser Tag! Ha, dieser Wonne sonnigster Tag! Jagendes Blut! Jauchzender Mut! Lust ohne Massen, freudiges Rasen! Auf des Lagers Bann wie sie ertragen! Wohlauf und daran, wo die Herzen schlagen! Tristan der Held, in jubelnder Kraft, hat sich vom Tod emporgerafft!
Er reisst sich den Verband der Wunde auf Heia, mein Blut! Lustig nun fliesse! Vergeh' die Welt meiner jauchzenden Eil'! Is it the light I hear? The torch, ah! The torch is extinguished! To her! Isolde enters breathlessly. Tristan, hardly conscious, totters towards her.