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Liebster Freund, und kann's denn sein

Language: German (Deutsch)

"[Liebster Freund]1, und kann's denn sein,
Wächst noch immer diese Liebe?
Längst war ihr das Herz zu klein,
Quillt noch stets von neuem Triebe!
 
Tag für Tag und Nacht für Nacht
Füllt sich's fort aus ew'gen Quellen
Und das Herze weint und lacht,
Kann sich gar nicht mehr verstellen.
 
Süße Krankheit, himmlisch Leid!
Und so mag's die Welt denn wissen!
Der mich liebt, ist ach, so weit,
Und das Herz ist mir zerrissen.
 
Aber dann im Traum der Nacht,
O wie sind wir da beisammen,--
Süßer, als ich's je gedacht,--
Und sie tödten nicht die Flammen?
 
Ja, nur zu! Ich zage nicht
Dies allein ist mir geblieben,
[Küss' mich, bis dies Herz zerbricht!]2
[O, zu Tod möcht' ich mich lieben!"


Translation(s): ENG

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Notes (provided by Sharon Krebs): There are two manuscript copies of this unpublished poem: one in Marbach (Christian Reinhold Köstlin’s poetry manuscripts, Z 4131, poem 158, Deutsches Literaturarchiv, Marbach, Germany) and one in Stuttgart (Christian Reinhold Köstlin’s poetry manuscripts, Cod.hist. 4º 437, Fasz. 10a Nr. 2, poem [76], Württembergische Landesbibliothek, Stuttgart, Germany). Lang’s setting is based on "her" copy (i.e., the one sent to her by Köstlin), which is held in Stuttgart.

Poet’s title (in the Stuttgart manuscript): "Weiberle singt"
Poet’s title (in the Marbach manuscript): [none] just the date, 16. November [1841]

The poem is in quotation marks and in a feminine voice because Köstlin based it on the contents of a letter than Lang wrote to him. In fact, on the Stuttgart poetry manuscript he wrote: "Da hab’ ich eben geschwind noch ein Motiv aus deinem Brief aufgegriffen (Here I have quickly just snatched a motif yet from your letter)."

1 in the Marbach poetry manuscript: "Herz, mein Herz"
2 Lang (or possibly her publisher, since her song manuscript has "Küße mich"): "Ich liebe Dich! Bis dies Herz mir bricht"; when the text is repeated: "das Herz"
3 Lang: "Ja zu todt möcht' ich mich lieben"

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator] and Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]

Authorship


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

  • by Josephine Lang (1815 - 1880), "Zu Tod möcht ich mich lieben", op. 27 (Sechs deutsche Lieder) no. 6 (likely 1841), published 1872 [voice and piano], Stuttgart, Ebner [
     text verified 1 time
    ]

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

  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , copyright © 2006, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


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

Last modified: 2016-07-28 18:34:13
Line count: 20
Word count: 120

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Dearest friend! And can it be?

Language: English after the German (Deutsch)

"[Dearest friend!]1 And can it be?
Does this love continue to grow?
My heart has long been too small to hold it,
But it still wells forth ever new!
 
Day after day and night after night
It is filled again from eternal springs,
And my heart weeps and laughs;
It can no longer disguise what it feels.
 
Sweet sickness, heavenly pain!
And so the world may know it!
He who loves me is, ah, so far away,
And my heart is torn to shreds.
 
But then in the dream of night,
Oh how we are together there,--
Sweeter than I ever imagined,--
And flames [of love] do not kill?
 
Let it be so!  I do not hesitate.
This alone is left to me:
[Kiss me, until this heart breaks into pieces!]2
[Oh,]3 I would love unto death!"


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About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Translated titles:
"Weiberle singt" = "The little woman sings"
"Zu Tod möcht ich mich lieben" = "I would love unto death"

1 in the Marbach poetry manuscript: "Heart, my heart"
2 Lang: "I shall love you! Until this heart of mine breaks!"
3 Lang: "Yes"

Authorship

  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2006 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 German (Deutsch) by Christian Reinhold (1813 - 1856), "Weiberle singt", written 1841
      • This text was set to music by the following composer(s): Josephine Lang. Go to the text.

 

Text added to the website: 2006-12-13.
Last modified: 2016-07-28 14:38:50
Line count: 20
Word count: 137