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

Safe in their alabaster chambers
Language: English 
Available translation(s): GER
Safe in their alabaster chambers,
Untouched by morning and untouched by noon,
Sleep the meek members of the resurrection,
Rafter of satin, and roof of stone.

Light laughs the breeze in her castle of sunshine;
Babbles the bee in a stolid ear;
Pipe the sweet birds in ignorant cadence, -
Ah, what sagacity perished here!

Grand go the years in the crescent above them;
Worlds scoop their arcs, and firmaments row,
Diadems drop and Doges surrender,
Soundless as dots on a disk of snow.

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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):

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 12
Word count: 84

Sicher in ihren Grabeskammern
Language: German (Deutsch)  after the English 
Sicher in ihren Grabeskammern
- es strahlt kein Morgen, kein Mittag herein -
ruhn, die der Auferstehung duldsam harren,
Satin, das Sargtuch, das Dach aus Stein.

Licht lacht die Brise im Sonnenscheinschlosse;
brabbelt die Bien’ in ein stilles Ohr,
zwitschern die Vögel schlicht ihre Weisen,
ach, welch Erkennen sich hier verlor!

Groß ziehn die Jahre am Himmelsgewölbe,
Planeten ziehn und Sphären sich drehn,
fallende Kronen, abdankende Herrscher, 
kaum zu erkennen wie Pünktchen auf Schnee. 

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  • Translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2018 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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This text was added to the website: 2018-10-17
Line count: 12
Word count: 74