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Der Arbeitsmann

Language: German (Deutsch)

Wir haben ein Bett, wir haben ein Kind,
   mein Weib!
Wir haben auch Arbeit, und gar zu zweit,
und haben die Sonne und Regen und Wind,
und uns fehlt nur eine Kleinigkeit,
um so frei zu sein, wie die Vögel sind:
   nur Zeit.

Wenn wir Sonntags durch die Felder gehn,
   mein Kind,
und über den Ähren weit und breit
das blaue Schwalbenvolk blitzen sehn,
o dann fehlt uns nicht das bißchen Kleid,
um so schön zu sein, wie die Vögel sind:
   nur Zeit.

Nur Zeit! wir wittern Gewitterwind,
   wir Volk.
Nur eine kleine Ewigkeit;
uns fehlt ja nichts, mein Weib, mein Kind,
als all das, was durch uns gedeiht,
um so [froh]1 zu sein, wie die Vögel sind:
  nur Zeit.

Translation(s): ENG FRE

List of language codes

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Pfitzner or Schoeck: "kühn"

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):

  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , title 1: "The workman", copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , title 1: "Le travailleur", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

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

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:25
Line count: 21
Word count: 120

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The workman

Language: English after the German (Deutsch)

We have a bed, we have a child,
My wife!
We have also work - work for two,
and have the sun and rain and wind;
and we lack just one small thing
to be as free as the birds are:
only time.

When on Sundays we go through the fields,
My child,
And above the corn, far and wide,
the blue swallows can be seen flitting,
Oh, then, we lack no bits of clothing
to be as fine as the birds are:
only time.

Only time! We sense a stormwind,
we people.
Just one small eternity;
We lack nothing, my wife, my child,
but all that thrives in us,
to be as bold as the birds are:
only time.

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 English copyright © by Emily Ezust

    Emily Ezust permits her translations to be reproduced without prior permission for printed (not online) programs to free-admission concerts only, provided the following credit is given:

    Translation copyright © by Emily Ezust,
    from the LiederNet Archive --

    For any other purpose, please write to the e-mail address below to request permission and discuss possible fees.

    licenses (AT) lieder (DOT) net
    (licenses at lieder dot net)

Based on


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

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:25
Line count: 21
Word count: 120