by Emily Dickinson (1830 - 1886)
Translation © by Bertram Kottmann

On this wondrous sea
Language: English 
Available translation(s): FRE GER
On this wondrous sea,
Sailing silently,
[Ho! pilot, ho!
Knowest thou the shore]1
Where no breakers roar,
Where the storm is o'er?

In the silent west
Many [the]2 sails at rest,
Their anchors fast;
Thither I pilot thee, -
Land, ho! Eternity!
Ashore at last!

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1 lines inverted by Bacon ?
2 omitted by Bacon ?


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Set in a modified version by William Hawley, Craig Urquhart.

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 12
Word count: 45

Auf dem Lebensmeer
Language: German (Deutsch)  after the English 
Auf dem Lebensmeer
segeln - still einher,
auf, Käpt’n, auf!
Kennst die Küste du,
wo Meer und Sturmes Wut
sind gelangt zur Ruh?

Dort, im stillen West -
Segel sind gerefft -
ankern, sturmgefeit.
Dorthin leit' ich dich -
Ewigkeit in Sicht! -
Land der Seligkeit!

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  • Translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2017 by Bertram Kottmann, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you must ask the copyright-holder(s) directly for permission. If you receive no response, you must consider it a refusal.

    Bertram Kottmann.  Contact: BKottmann (AT)

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Based on


This text was added to the website: 2017-05-07
Line count: 12
Word count: 46