Because I could not stop for Death
Because I [could]1 not stop for Death --
He kindly stopped for me --
The carriage held but just ourselves --
We slowly drove -- he knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labour, and my leisure too
For His Civility --
We passed the school, where children played,
[ At wrestling in a ring]2
We passed the fields of gazing grain,
We passed the setting sun.
We paused before a house that seemed
a swelling of the ground;
The roof was scarcely visible,
The cornice but a mound.
Since then 'tis centuries; but each
Feels shorter than the day
I first surmised the horses' heads
Were toward eternity.
Translation(s): CAT FRE GER GER ITA
List of language codes
About the headline (FAQ)
View original text (without footnotes)
1 Copland, Kagen: "would"
2 Copland: "Their lessons scarcely done"
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)
- by John Coolidge Adams (b. 1947), "Because I could not stop for Death ", 1980-1, first performed 1981 [chorus and orchestra], from Harmonium, no. 2 [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Gary Bachlund (b. 1947), "Because I could not stop for death", 1990 [high voice and piano] [ sung text checked 1 time]
- by Ernst Bacon (1898 - 1990), "Immortality", 1978 [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Charles Jason Bechtold , "Because I couuld not stop for death" [SATB chorus a cappella] [ sung text checked 1 time]
- by Fania Chapiro , "Because I could not stop for death", 1988, from Three songs of death, no. 3 [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Aaron Copland (1900 - 1990), "The chariot", 1949-50, published 1951 [mezzo-soprano, piano], from Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson, no. 12 [ sung text checked 1 time]
- by Leslie Crabtree (b. 1941), "Because I could not stop for Death", 2007 [voice and piano] [ sung text checked 1 time]
- by Sergius Kagen (1909 - 1964), "Because I would not stop for Death", published 1951 [medium voice, piano] [ sung text checked 1 time]
- by Tim Silva , "Because I couuld not stop for death", 2008 [women's chorus a cappella] [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
Set in a modified version by .
Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):
- CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
- FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "La voiture", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
- GER German (Deutsch) (Walter A. Aue) , copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
- GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
- ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "La carrozza", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:26
Line count: 20
Word count: 108
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- Emily Ezust
Weil ich nicht steh’n blieb wegen ihm
Language: German (Deutsch) after the English
Weil ich nicht steh’n blieb wegen ihm,
da hielt der Tod für mich.
Im Wagen waren nur wir zwei
und das, was unsterblich.
Er fuhr gemächlich, ohne Hast
und ich legte beiseit,
alles was Müh’ und Muße war
aus lauter Höflichkeit.
Vorbei ging’s an dem Pausenhof,
da spielte man und rang,
vorbei an Feldern reifen Korns,
Dann Halt vor einem Haus, wie ein
kaum sichtbar war sein Dach und sein
Gesims ein Hügel bloß.
Seit damals sind’s Jahrhunderte
doch fühlt ich diese Zeit
noch kürzer als den Tag an dem
es ging zur Ewigkeit.
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About the headline (FAQ)
Translation of title "The chariot" = "Der Wagen"
- Translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2015 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) t-online.de>
If you wish to commission a new translation, please contact:
(licenses at lieder dot net)
- a text in English by Emily Dickinson (1830 - 1886), no title, appears in Poems of Emily Dickinson, first published 1890 CAT FRE ITA
- This text was set to music by the following composer(s): John Coolidge Adams, Gary Bachlund, Ernst Bacon, Charles Jason Bechtold, Fania Chapiro, Aaron Copland, Leslie Crabtree, Sergius Kagen, Tim Silva. Go to the text.
Text added to the website: 2015-06-10 00:00:00.
Last modified: 2015-06-10 11:02:32
Line count: 20
Word count: 98