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Ah, Love, but a day

Language: English

Ah, Love, but a day,
And the world has changed!
The sun's away,
And the bird estranged;
The wind has dropped, 
And the sky's deranged;
Summer has stopped.

Look in my eyes!
Wilt thou change too?
Should I fear surprise?
Shall I find aught new 
In the old and dear,
In the good and true,
With the changing year?

Thou art a man,
But I am thy love.
For the lake, its swan;
For the dell, its dove;
And for thee — (oh, haste!)
Me, to bend above,
Me, to hold embraced.

Translation(s): GER ITA

List of language codes

A. Beach sets stanzas 1-2

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Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]


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

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

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Denise Ritter Bernardini) , title 1: "Ah, l'amore, ma un giorno", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Sharon Krebs) , title 1: "Ach, Geliebter, nur ein Tag", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:23
Line count: 21
Word count: 92

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Ach, Geliebter, nur ein Tag

Language: German (Deutsch) after the English

Ach, Geliebter1, nur ein Tag [verging]
Und die Welt hat sich verändert!
Die Sonne ist fort,
Der Vogel ist fremd;
Der Wind kam herab,
Und der Himmel ist verwirrt;
Der Sommer ist hin.

Blicke mir in die Augen!
Wirst du dich auch verändern?
Sollte ich mich vor einer Überraschung fürchten?
Sollte ich in der wechselnden Jahreszeit
Irgend etwas Neues finden
Im Alten und Vertrauten,
Im Guten und Wahren?

Du bist ein Mann,
Aber ich bin deine Geliebte.
Der See hat seinen Schwan,
Das Tal seine Taube;
Und für dich -- (o eile!)
Gibt’s mich, dass du dich über mich neigst,
Mich, dass du mich umarmt hältst.

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View original text (without footnotes)
1 Weil Amy Beach nur die ersten zwei Strophen vertont hat, ist es nicht eindeutig, ob ihr Lied an eine Geliebte oder einen Geliebten gerichtet ist. Es steht Benützern dieser Übersetzung frei, entweder “Geliebte” oder “Geliebter” zu wählen.


  • Translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2014 by Sharon Krebs, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.


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Based on
  • a text in English by Robert Browning (1812 - 1889), no title, appears in James Lee's Wife ITA
      • This text was set to music by the following composer(s): Amy Marcy Cheney Beach, Hallet Gilberté, Julian Pascal, Clara Kathleen Rogers. Go to the text.


Text added to the website: 2014-09-17.
Last modified: 2015-01-18 12:34:17
Line count: 21
Word count: 105