Translation © by Emily Ezust

Noch einmal tön', o Harfe
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT DUT ENG FRE
Noch einmal tön', o Harfe,
Die nur Gefühle tönt!
Verhalle zart und leise
Noch jene Schwanenweise,
Die auf der Fluth des Lebens
Uns mit der Noth versöhnt!

Im Morgenschein des Lebens
Erklangst du rein und hell!
Wer kann den Klang verwahren?
Durch Forschen und Erfahren
Verhallet' und versiegte
Des Liedes reiner Quell.

In spätern Jugendjahren
Hallt es schon zart und bang,
Wie Finkenschlag im Merze;
Mit des Entknospens Schmerze
Erbeben Herz und Saiten
Voll Liebe und Gesang!

Am Sommertag des Lebens
Verstummt das Saitenspiel!
Aus sehnsuchtsvoller Seele
Lockts noch, wie Philomele,
Schon seltner, aber rührend,
Nur Schwermuth und Gefühl.

O schlag' im [dunkeln]1 Busen
Der ernsten Abendzeit!
Will um das öde Leben
Des Schicksals Nacht sich weben,
Dann schlag' und wecke Sehnsucht
Nach der Unsterblichkeit!

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Gedichte von J.G. von Salis. Neue Auflage. Zürich, bey Orell Füßli und Compagnie. 1808, pages 151-152; and with Gedichte von J. G. von Salis. Neueste Auflage. Wien 1815. Bey B. Ph. Bauer, pages 139-140.

First published in Iris. Ein Taschenbuch für 1806. Herausgegeben von J. G. Jacobi. Zürich, bey Orell, Füssli und Compagnie, pages 275-276, with the title Abschied an die Harfe.

1 Salis-Seewis (1806 edition): "dunklen"


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 © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Afscheid van de harp", copyright © 2006, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , "Farewell to the harp", copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Adieux à la harpe", copyright ©, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Peter Rastl [Guest Editor]

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2018-04-01 09:48:06
Line count: 30
Word count: 125

Farewell to the harp
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
 Sing once more, o harp,
 sing only what we feel!
 Die away tenderly and softly
 in this swan-song
 that on the tide of life
 reconciles us to misery.
 In the morning light of life
 you resounded pure and bright!
 Who can preserve the sound?
 By experiencing life
 we dry up
 the pure source of the song.

 In the later years of youth
 it echoes, already tender and timid,
 like the singing of finches in March;
 with the pain of buds falling off,
 the heart and the strings thrill,
 full of love and song!

 In the summertime of life,
 the play of strings falls silent!
 Out of our soul full of yearning
 it entices us yet, like Philomela,
 already more seldom, but evoking
 only gloom and sentiment.

 O resound in the dark breast
 at somber evening time!
 When barren life
 is enfolded by fate,
 then play, and awaken our yearning
 for immortality!


  • 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


Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:48
Line count: 30
Word count: 152