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A Tagore Album

Word count: 525

Song Cycle by Wendy Hiscocks (b. 1963)

German (Deutsch) translation: Tagore Album (Bertram Kottmann)

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1. Light, my light [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English after the Bangla (Bengali)

Translation(s): FRE FRE GER GER ITA

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

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Light, my light, the world-filling light,
the eye-kissing light, heart-sweetening light!

Ah, the light dances, my darling, at the centre of my life;
the light strikes, my darling, the chords of my love;
the sky opens, the wind runs wild, laughter passes over the earth.

The butterflies spread their sails on the sea of light.
Lilies and jasmines surge up on the crest of the waves of light.

The light is shattered into gold on every cloud, my darling,
and it scatters gems in profusion.

Mirth spreads from leaf to leaf, my darling,
and gladness without measure. 
The heaven's river has drowned its banks 
and the flood of joy is abroad.


Submitted by Geoffrey Wieting

2. Did you leave behind you your love? [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Did you leave behind you your love, my heart;
  And miss peace through all your days?
And is the path you followed lost and forgotten,
  Making your return hopeless?
I go roaming listening to brooks' babble,
  To the rustle of leaves.
And it seems to me that I shall find the way,
  That reaches the land of lost love
  Beyond the evening stars.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. My heart, the bird [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English after the Bangla (Bengali)

Translation(s): CZE CZE FRE GER GER ITA POL SWE

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


My heart, the bird of the wilderness,
has found its sky in your eyes:
They are the cradle of the morning,
they are the kingdom of the stars;
My songs are lost in their depths.
Let me but soar in that sky,
in its lonely immensity!
Let me but cleave its clouds
and spread wings in its sunshine.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

4. In desperate hope [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English after the Bangla (Bengali)

Translation(s): DUT GER GER

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

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


In desperate hope I go and search for her 
in all the corners of my room; I find her not.

My house is small and what once has gone from it 
can never be regained.

But infinite is thy mansion, my lord, 
and seeking her I have to come to thy door.

I stand under the golden canopy of thine evening sky
and I lift my eager eyes to thy face.

I have come to the brink of eternity 
from which nothing can vanish --
no hope, no happiness, 
no vision of a face seen through tears.

Oh, dip my emptied life into that ocean, 
plunge it into the deepest fullness. 
Let me for once feel 
that lost sweet touch in the allness of the universe.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

5. Let all the strains of joy [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English after the Bangla (Bengali)

Translation(s): DUT FRE GER GER GER

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Let all the strains of joy 
mingle in my last song -- 
the joy that makes the earth flow over 
in the riotous excess of the grass, 
the joy that sets the twin brothers, 
life and death, dancing over the wide world, 
the joy that sweeps in with the tempest, 
shaking and waking all life with laughter, 
the joy that sits still with its tears 
on the open red lotus of pain, 
and the joy that throws everything it has 
upon the dust, and knows not a word.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

6. It is the pain of separation [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English after the Bangla (Bengali)

Translation(s): GER POR

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

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


It is the pang of separation that spreads throughout the world 
and gives birth to shapes innumerable in the infinite sky.

It is this sorrow of separation that gazes in silence 
all nights from star to star 
and becomes lyric 
among rustling leaves in rainy darkness of July.

It is this overspreading pain that deepens 
into loves and desires, 
into sufferings and joy in human homes; 
and this it is that ever melts and flows in songs 
through my poet's heart.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

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