by Friedrich Rückert (1788 - 1866)
Translation © by Emily Ezust

Flügel! Flügel! um zu fliegen
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT DUT ENG FRE
Flügel! Flügel! um zu fliegen
Über Berg und Tal.
Flügel, um mein Herz zu wiegen
Auf des Morgens Strahl.

Flügel, übers Meer zu schweben
Mit dem Morgenrot,
Flügel, Flügel über's Leben,
Über Grab und Tod.

Flügel, wie [die]1 Jugend hatte,
Da sie mir entflog,
Flügel, wie des Glückes [Schatte]2,
Der mein Herz betrog!

Flügel, nachzuflieh'n den Tagen,
Die vorüber sind,
Flügel, Freuden einzujagen,
Die entfloh'n im Wind.

Flügel, gleich den Nachtigallen,
Wann die Rosen [flieh'n]3,
Aus dem Land, wo Nebel wallen,
Ihnen nachzuzieh'n.

Ach! von dem Verbannungsstrande,
Wo kein Nachen winkt,
Flügel nach dem Heimatlande,
Wo die Krone blinkt!

Freiheit, wie zum Schmetterlinge
Raupenleben reift,
[Wann]4 sich dehnt des Geistes Schwinge
Und die Hüll entstreift!

Oft in stillen Mitternächten
Fühl' ich mich empor
Flügeln von des Traumes Mächten
Zu dem Sternentor.

Doch gewachsenes Gefieder
In der Nächte Duft,
Mir entträufeln seh' ich's wieder
An des Morgens Luft.

Sonnenbrand den Fittich schmelzet,
Ikar stürzt in's Meer,
Und der Sinne Brausen wälzet
Über'm Geist sich her.

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Schumann: "sie"
2 Schumann: "Schatten"
3 Schumann: "blühn"
4 Schumann: "Wenn"


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):

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Vleugels! Vleugels! Om te vliegen", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , "Wings! wings! to fly", copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Des aile ! des ailes ! pour voler", copyright © 2008, (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: 40
Word count: 164

Wings! wings! to fly
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Wings! Wings! to fly
over mountain and valley;
wings, to cradle my heart
upon the morning sunbeams!

Wings, to float across the ocean
with the reddish dawn;
wings, wings over life,
over the grave and death!

Wings like those that youth has,
for they have flown away from me;
wings like Luck's shadow,
that cheated my heart!

Wings, to chase after the days
that have passed!
Wings, to hunt the joys
that have escaped in the wind.

Wings like those of the nightingales
when the roses are blooming,
to soar after them from the land
to where the mists float! Wings! Wings!

Ah! From the beach of exile,
where no boats beckon,
Wings, wings to the homeland,
where my crown flashes!

Freedom, just as a caterpillar
transforms into a butterfly
when the wings of the spirit sretch
and graze the cocoon!

Often at silent midnight
I feel myself rising
with wings of dreamlike power
to the starry gate.

But these wings which sprout
in the fragrance of the night -
I see them fall off again
in the morning breeze.

The burning sun melts the pinions;
Icarus plunges into the sea,
and the power of his intentions 
rolls here over his spirit.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © by Emily Ezust

    Emily Ezust permits her translations to be reproduced without prior permission for printed (not online) programs to free-admission concerts only, provided the following credit is given:

    Translation copyright © by Emily Ezust,
    from the LiederNet Archive --

    For any other purpose, please write to the e-mail address below to request permission and discuss possible fees.

Based on


This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 40
Word count: 202