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Trieste, or Three Poems by James Joyce

Word count: 173

Song Cycle by Geert van Keulen (b. 1943)

Show the texts alone (bare mode).

1. On the beach at Fontana [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE GER

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Sur la plage à Fontana", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Am Strand von Fontana", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Wind whines and whines the shingle,
The crazy pierstakes groan;
A senile sea numbers each single
Slimesilvered stone.

From whining wind and colder
Grey sea I wrap him warm
And touch his trembling fineboned shoulder
And boyish arm.

Around us fear, descending
Darkness of fear above
And in my heart how deep unending
Ache of love!


First published in Poetry, November 1917.

Submitted by Barbara Miller

2. Watching the needleboats at San Saba [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE GER

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "En regardant les yoles à San Sabba", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Betrachtung der Ruderer vor San Sabba", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


I heard their young hearts crying
Loveward above the glancing oar
And heard the prairie grasses sighing:
No more, return no more!

O hearts, O sighing grasses,
Vainly your loveblown bannerets mourn!
No more will the wild wind that passes
Return, no more return.


First published in the Saturday Review, September 1913

Submitted by Barbara Miller

3. Nightpiece [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE GER

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Nocturne", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Nachtstück", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Gaunt in gloom
The pale stars their torches
Enshrouded wave. 
Ghostfires from heaven's far verges faint illume
Arches on soaring arches,
Night's sindark nave. 

Seraphim
The lost hosts awaken
To service till
In moonless gloom each lapses, muted, dim
Raised when she has and shaken
Her thurible. 

And long and loud
To night's nave upsoaring
A starknell tolls
As the bleak incense surges, cloud on cloud,
Voidward from the adoring
Waste of souls.


First published in Poetry, May 1917

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

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