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Ich bin des Meeres zartweiße Tochter, Es war die Muschel Die mich gebar. Dort in der Enge meiner dunkeln Wiege Friedlich ich liege, Sicher vor Gefahr. Zärtlich am Busen die Mutter mich heget; Treulich sie pfleget Und schirmet sie mich. Habe nach Luft nicht, nach Licht kein Verlangen, Bin nicht gefangen, Nein, frei bin ich. Weh! wenn gewaltsam aus Mutterarmen Man ohne Erbarmen Grausam mich doch Entführen könnte zum Licht dem grellen Aus blauen Wellen Ins Sklavenjoch! Wenn auf dem Markt ich wäre zu sehen, Verkauft zu gehen Von Hand zu Hand, Nur an die Reichen, die kaum mich achten, Mich nur betrachten Als Spiel und Tand. Endlich wohl fügte man fast wie zum Hohne In eine Krone Von Dornen mich. Gleich einer Träne dann aus wundem Herzen In Trennungsschmerzen Dort glänzte ich.
- by Theobald Rehbaum (1835 - 1918) [author's text not yet checked against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Franz (Ferenc) Liszt (1811 - 1886), "Die Perle", S. 326 (1876). [voice and piano], also set in Italian (Italiano) [text verified 1 time]
Available translations, adaptations, and transliterations (if applicable):
- ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , title 1: "The pearl", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Researcher for this text: Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]
This text was added to the website: 2011-05-01
Line count: 30
Word count: 133
I am the delicately white daughter of the sea, It was the mollusk That gave birth to me. There in the confines of my dark cradle I lie peacefully, Safe from harm. My mother holds me tenderly to her breast; Faithfully she cares for And protects me. I have no desire for air or for light, I am not imprisoned, No, I am free. Woe! if from my mother’s arms, forcefully, Without mercy, Horribly, one could Abduct me into the glaring light, From the blue waves Into the yoke of slavery! If I were to be on view in the marketplace, Sold, to be passed From hand to hand, Only to the rich, who hardly pay me mind, Who see me only As sport and frippery. Finally, almost as a mockery, one might well fasten me Into a crown Of thorns. There, like a tear then from a wounded heart, In the throes of the pain of separation I would gleam.
- Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2016 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.
This text was added to the website: 2016-10-01
Line count: 30
Word count: 161