You can help us modernize! The present website has been online for a very long time and we want to bring it up to date. As of May 6, we are $2,380 away from our goal of $15,000 to fund the project. The fully redesigned site will be better for mobile, easier to read and navigate, and ready for the next decade. Please give today to join dozens of other supporters in making this important overhaul possible!

The LiederNet Archive

Much of our material is not in the public domain.
It is illegal to copy and distribute our copyright-protected material without permission.
Printing texts or translations without the name of the author or translator is also illegal.
You must use the copyright symbol © when you reprint copyright-protected material.

For more information, contact us at the following address:
licenses (AT) lieder (DOT) net
Please read the instructions below the translations before writing!
In your e-mail, always include the names of the translators if you wish to reprint something.

The one real gem

Language: German (Deutsch)

Wealth, Power, and Fame -- aye, even Love, 
  Are but an hour's delight, and go ; 
But Sleep's a blessing to hold fast 
  Till her warm dew becomes Death's snow ; 
All men that scorned Sleep in the past, 
  For any thing beneath the Sun, 
  Will rue it ere their life be done. 

Much it perplexed of late to know 
  What made my heart with joy so light ; 
Until I thought of how sweet Sleep 
  Did, for so many hours each night, 
Keep me in her delicious deep : 
  Charmed me each night with her sweet powers, 
  In one unbroken stretch of hours. 

All-powerful Sleep, thou canst give slaves 
  Kings for attendants ; and their straw 
Becomes in thy soft hands like down ; 
  Thou one real gem, without a flaw, 
That purely shineth in Life's crown ; 
  For Wealth, and Power, and Fame are paste, 
  That into common ashes waste. 

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)

Text added to the website: 2011-09-26 00:00:00.

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:37

Line count: 21
Word count: 151

Gentle Reminder
This website began in 1995 as a personal project, and I have been working on it full-time without a salary since 2008. Our research has never had any government or institutional funding, so if you found the information here useful, please consider making a donation. Your gift is greatly appreciated.
     - Emily Ezust

Browse (Petrucci Music Library) for Lieder or choral works