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Das Alter

Language: German (Deutsch)

Hoch mit den Wolken geht der Vögel Reise,
Die Erde [schläfert]1, kaum noch Astern prangen,
Verstummt die Lieder, die so fröhlich klangen,
Und trüber Winter deckt die weiten Kreise.

Die Wanduhr pickt, im Zimmer singet leise
Waldvöglein noch, so du im Herbst gefangen.
Ein Bilderbuch scheint alles, was vergangen,
Du blätterst drin, geschützt vor Sturm und Eise.

So mild ist oft das Alter mir erschienen:
Wart nur, bald taut es von den Dächern wieder
Und über Nacht hat sich die Luft gewendet.

Ans Fenster klopft ein [Bot']2 mit frohen Mienen,
Du trittst erstaunt heraus -- und kehrst nicht wieder,
Denn endlich kommt der Lenz, der nimmer endet.

Translation(s): ENG FRE ITA

List of language codes

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Zillig: "schläft"
2 Pfitzner: "Bote"

Submitted by Jakob Kellner


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) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , title 1: "Vecchiaia", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , title 1: "Old age", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , title 1: "Le vieillard", copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

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

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:27
Line count: 14
Word count: 106

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Language: Italian (Italiano) after the German (Deutsch)

Migrano alti gli uccelli fra le nubi,
e la terra riposa, le stelle brillano appena,
tacciono i canti, che suonavano allegri,
e tutto, d'intorno, avvolge un triste inverno.

La pendola ticchetta, e nella stanza piano
Ancora canta un uccello, tolto al bosco in autunno.
E tutto il tuo passato trascorre nelle immagini
Di un libro che sfogli, al riparo dal vento e dal freddo.

Così dolce sovente la vecchiaia mi appare:
aspetta un poco, presto si scioglierà il ghiaccio dai tetti
e con la notte l'aria si farà nuova.

E alla finestra qualcuno busserà lieto,
e tu sorpreso uscirai per non più tornare,
perché la primavera sarà ormai arrivata, e non avrà fine.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The material directly above is protected by copyright and appears here by special permission. If you wish to copy it and distribute it, you must obtain permission or you will be breaking the law. Once you have permission, you must give credit to the author and display the copyright symbol ©. Copyright infringement is a criminal offense under international law.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to Italian (Italiano) copyright © 2008 by Ferdinando Albeggiani, (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.


    licenses (AT) lieder (DOT) net
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Based on


Text added to the website: 2008-03-31.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:39
Line count: 14
Word count: 113