by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850 - 1894)

Give to me the life I love
Language: English 
Available translation(s): CAT ITA
Give to me the life I love,
Let the lave go by me,
Give the jolly heaven above
And the byway nigh me.
Bed in the bush with stars to see,
Bread I dip in the river -
There's the life for a man like me,
There's the life for ever.

Let the blow fall soon or late,
Let what will be o'er me;
Give the face of earth around
And the road before me.
Wealth I seek not, hope nor love,
Nor a friend to know me;
All I seek, the heaven above
And the road below me.

Or let autumn fall on me
Where afield I linger,
Silencing the bird on tree,
Biting the blue finger.
White as meal the frosty field -
Warm the fireside haven -
Not to autumn will I yield,
Not to winter even!

Let the blow fall soon or late,
Let what will be o'er me;
Give the face of earth around,
And the road before me.
Wealth I [ask]1 not, hope nor love,
Nor a friend to know me;
All I ask, the heaven above
And the road below me.

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with The Complete Poetry of Robert Louis Stevenson: A Child's Garden of Verses, e-artnow, 2015 (via Google Books).

Note: "lave" = "that which is left"
1 Dunhill: "seek"

Authorship

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 © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Il vagabondo", copyright © 2005, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2017-04-26 19:32:26
Line count: 32
Word count: 188