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Song of death

Language: English

Sing the song of death, O sing it!
for without the song of death, the song of life
becomes pointless and silly.

Sing then the song of death, and the longest journey,
and what the soul takes with him, and what he leaves behind,
and how he enters fold after fold of deepening darkness
for the cosmos even in death is like a dark whorled shell
whose whorls fold round to the core of soundless silence and pivotal oblivion
where the soul comes at last, and has utter peace.

Sing then the core of dark and absolute
oblivion where the soul at last is lost
in utter peace.
Sing the song of death, O sing it!

Translation(s): GER

List of language codes

Submitted by Bertram Kottmann


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):

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , title 1: "Lied vom Tod", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Text added to the website: 2016-11-08.
Last modified: 2016-11-08 16:46:32
Line count: 13
Word count: 116

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Lied vom Tod

Language: German (Deutsch) after the English

Singt das Lied vom Tod, ja, singt es!
Denn bleibt es ungesungen, dann wird das Lied des Lebens
sinnlos und absurd.

So stimmt alsdann das Lied vom Tode an und dieser längsten Reise,
und was die Seele wohl nimmt mit und was zurück sie lässt,
und wie sie eindringt, Schicht um Schicht, und tief und tiefer in ein Dunkel,
denn das All gleicht - selbst im Tod - dem gewundenen Gehäuse einer dunklen Muschel,
das sich auf ein Innerstes aus absoluter Stille und völligem Vergessen hinzentriert,
auf dass die Seele endlich dort ankommt und den vollkommnen Frieden findet.

Singt diesem Innersten aus Dunkelheit und völligem Vergessen,
wo endlich dann die Seele sich versenkt
in vollkommnem Frieden.
Singt das Lied vom Tod, ja, singt es!

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  • Translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2016 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


Text added to the website: 2016-11-08.
Last modified: 2016-11-08 17:46:55
Line count: 13
Word count: 124