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The night darkened. Our day's works had...

Language: English after the Bangla (Bengali)

The night darkened. Our day's works had been done. 
We thought that the last guest had arrived for the night 
and the doors in the village were all shut. 
Only some said the king was to come. 
We laughed and said 'No, it cannot be!'

It seemed there were knocks at the door 
and we said it was nothing but the wind. 
We put out the lamps and lay down to sleep. 
Only some said, 'It is the messenger!' 
We laughed and said 'No, it must be the wind!'

There came a sound in the dead of the night. 
We sleepily thought it was the distant thunder. 
The earth shook, the walls rocked, and it troubled us in our sleep. 
Only some said it was the sound of wheels. 
We said in a drowsy murmur, 'No, it must be the rumbling of clouds!'

The night was still dark when the drum sounded. 
The voice came 'Wake up! delay not!' 
We pressed our hands on our hearts and shuddered with fear. 
Some said, 'Lo, there is the king's flag!' 
We stood up on our feet and cried 'There is no time for delay!'

The king has come - but where are lights, where are wreaths? 
Where is the throne to seat him? 
Oh, shame! Oh utter shame! 
Where is the hall, the decorations? 
Someone has said, 'Vain is this cry! 
Greet him with empty hands, lead him into thy rooms all bare!'

Open the doors, let the conch-shells be sounded! 
in the depth of the night has come the king of our dark, dreary house. 
The thunder roars in the sky. 
The darkness shudders with lightning. 
Bring out thy tattered piece of mat and spread it in the courtyard. 
With the storm has come of a sudden our king of the fearful night.

Translation(s): GER

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About the headline (FAQ)

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]


Based on

Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

    [ None yet in the database ]

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

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

Text added to the website: 2010-11-03.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:06
Line count: 32
Word count: 302

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Es dunkelte die Nacht. Das Tagwerk war...

Language: German (Deutsch) after the English

Es dunkelte die Nacht. Das Tagwerk war getan.
Der letzte Gast wird wohl gekommen sein zur Nacht.
So wurde jede Tür im Dorf geschlossen.
Nur ein’ge meinten, dass der König käm'.
Wir aber sagten lachend: “Nein, dies kann nicht sein!“

Uns schien, als klopfte es am Tor. 
Wir sagten, dies sei nur der Wind.
So löschten wir die Lampen und legten uns zur Ruh.
Nur ein’ge meinten: „Hört, der Bote ist’s!“
Wir aber sagten lachend: “Nein, es ist der Wind!“

Da drang ein Schall durch tiefste Nacht.
Schlaftrunken dachten wir an fernen Donner.
Die Erde bebte, Mauern wankten. Dies störte uns vom Schlafe auf.
Nur ein’ge meinten, es sei Räderrattern.
Schlaftrunken unser Murmeln: „Es muss Donnergrollen sein!“

Es war noch immer finstre Nacht, da dröhnt' die Trommel
und die Stimm erschallt’: „Wacht auf und zaudert nicht!“
Die Hand am Herzen bebten wir vor Furcht.
Einige sagten: „Schaut! Des Königs Banner!“
Wir sprangen auf und riefen: „'s ist keine Zeit zu zögern mehr!“

Der König ist gekommen - doch wo sind Lampen, wo die Kränze?
Wo ist ein Thron für ihn bereit?
O Schmach, welch tiefe Schmach!
Wo ist die Halle, wo der Halle Zier?
Und einer rief: „Vergeblich euer Schrei’n!
Begrüßt mit leeren Händen ihn, führt ihn in eure nackten Wände!“

Macht weit die Tore, blast das Muschelhorn!
In tiefster Nacht erscheint der König unsres dunklen, tristen Hauses.
Der Donner grollt.
Die Finsternis erschauert vor den Blitzen.
Breit’ deine abgerissne Matte aus im Hof.
Im Sturm, in banger Nacht hat plötzlich unser König sich genaht.

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About the headline (FAQ)


  • Translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2014 by Bertram Kottmann, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you must ask the copyright-holder(s) directly for permission. If you receive no response, you must consider it a refusal.

    Bertram Kottmann. Contact:
    <BKottmann (AT)>

    If you wish to commission a new translation, please contact:
    licenses (AT) lieder (DOT) net
    (licenses at lieder dot net)

Based on
Based on


Text added to the website: 2014-06-13.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:05:35
Line count: 32
Word count: 255