by Hermann Hesse (1877 - 1962)
Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Arme Schwestern, liebe Schmerzen
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Arme Schwestern, liebe Schmerzen,
Seid nicht ihr auch Gottesgaben?
Aber keiner will euch haben.
Wohnet denn in meinem Herzen!
Alle Lust der Welt zu haschen,
Gierig bin ich ausgezogen,
Kam geplündert, kam betrogen,
Müde heim mit leeren Taschen.
Die ich einst so sehr verachtet,
Liebe Schmerzen, seid gesegnet,
Die ihr mir so reich begegnet,
Mich so innig nun umnachtet!
Heiß durchflutet euer Glühen
Meines Blutes dunkle Wogen,
Die, von euch emporgesogen,
Tiefer atmen, schöner blühen.

About the headline (FAQ)

View text with footnotes

Confirmed with Hermann Hesse, Sämtliche Werke, herausgegeben von Volker Michels, Band 10 Die Gedichte, bearbeitet von Peter Huber, Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp Verlag, 2002, page 309.


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 or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2009-05-14
Line count: 16
Word count: 75

Poor sisters, dear tribulations
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Poor sisters, dear tribulations,
Are you not gifts from God as well?
But no one wants you.
Live then in my heart!

Greedily, I set out to grasp
All the joys of the world,
Plundered I came, deceived I came
Home wearily, with empty pockets.

You whom I once scorned so much,
Dear tribulations, blessed be,
You who have befallen me so abundantly,
Who so intimately shroud me now in night!

Your glowing fervently floods through
The dark waves of my blood,
Which, sucked upward by you,
Breathe more deeply, bloom more beautifully.

About the headline (FAQ)

View text with footnotes

Translations of title(s):
"Die Schmerzen" = "Tribulations"
"Liebe Schmerzen" = "Dear tribulations"


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2018 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.

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This text was added to the website: 2018-01-16
Line count: 16
Word count: 93