Songs From the Gardener

Song Cycle by Ann Marie Callaway (b. 1949)

Word count: 0

German (Deutsch) translation: Lieder aus „The Gardener“ ( Bertram Kottmann)

1. Come to my lake [sung text not yet checked]

If you would be busy and fill your pitcher, 
come, O come to my lake.
The water will cling round your feet and babble its secret.
The shadow of the coming rain is on the sands, 
and the clouds hang low upon the blue lines of the trees 
like the heavy hair above your eyebrows.
I know well the rhythm of your steps, 
they are beating in my heart.
Come, O come to my lake, if you must fill your pitcher.

If you would be idle and sit listless 
and let your pitcher float on the water, 
come, O come to my lake. 
The grassy slope is green, and the wild flowers beyond number.
Your thoughts will stray out of your dark eyes 
like birds from their nests.
Your veil will drop to your feet.
Come, O come to my lake if you must sit idle.

If you would leave off your play and dive in the water, 
come, O come to my lake.
Let your blue mantle lie on the shore; 
the blue water will cover you and hide you.
The waves will stand a-tiptoe to kiss your neck 
and whisper in your ears.
Come, O come to my lake, if you would dive in the water.

If you must be mad and leap to your death, 
come, O come to my lake.
It is cool and fathomlessly deep.
It is dark like a sleep that is dreamless.
There in its depths nights and days are one, 
and songs are silence.
Come, O come to my lake, if you would plunge to your death.

Authorship

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

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. My heart, bird of the wilderness [sung text not yet checked]

My heart, the bird of the wilderness,
has found its sky in your eyes:
They are the cradle of the morning,
they are the kingdom of the stars;
My songs are lost in their depths.
Let me but soar in that sky,
in its lonely immensity!
Let me but cleave its clouds
and spread wings in its sunshine.

Authorship

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. Unspoken things [sung text not yet checked]

In the morning I cast my net into the sea.
I dragged up from the dark abyss things of strange aspect
  and strange beauty -- some shone like a smile,
  some glistened like tears, and some were flushed 
  like the cheeks of a bride.
When with the day's burden I went home, my love was sitting 
  in the garden idly tearing the leaves of a flower.
I hesitated for a moment, and then placed at her feet 
  all that I had dragged up, and stood silent.
She glanced at them and said, "What strange things are these?
  I know not of what use they are!"
I bowed my head in shame and thought, "I have not fought 
  for these, I did not buy them in the market; 
  they are not fit gifts for her."
Then the whole night through I flung them 
  one by one into the street.
In the morning travellers came; they picked them up 
  and carried them into far countries.

Authorship

Based on

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

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

4. Speak to me, my love [sung text not yet checked]

Speak to me, my love! 
Tell me in words what you sang.
The night is dark. 
The stars are lost in clouds.
The wind is sighing through the leaves.
I will let loose my hair.
My blue cloak will cling round me like [night]1.
I will clasp your head to my bosom;
And there in the sweet loneliness 
murmur on your heart.
I will shut my eyes and listen.
I will not look in your face.
When your words are ended, 
we will sit still and silent.
Only the trees will whisper in the dark.
The night will pale. 
The day will dawn.
We shall look at each other's eyes 
and go on our different paths.
Speak to me, my love! 
Tell me in words what you sang.

Authorship

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Parle-moi, mon amour !", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Bridge: "the night"

Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

5. You are the evening cloud [sung text not yet checked]

You are the evening cloud
floating in the sky of my dreams.
I paint you and fashion you
ever with my love longings.
You are my own, my own, 
Dweller in my endless dreams!

Your feet are rosy-red 
with the glow of my heart's desire,
Gleaner of my sunset songs!
Your lips are bitter-sweet 
with the taste of my wine of pain.
You are my own, my own, 
Dweller in my lonesome dreams!

With the shadow of my passion 
have I darkened your eyes, 
Haunter of the depth of my gaze!
I have caught you and wrapt you, 
my love, in the net of my music.
You are my own, my own, 
Dweller in my deathless dreams!

Authorship

Based on

See other settings of this text.

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]