by Hans Bethge (1876 - 1946)
Translation © by Regina Berlinghof

Das Blatt der Frühlingsweide
Language: German (Deutsch)  after the Chinese (中文) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Nicht deshalb lieb ich jene junge Frau,
Die träumerisch an ihrem Fenster lehnt,
Weil sie den ragenden Palast besitzt
Am Gelben Flusse, - nein, ich liebe sie,
Weil sie dies kleine Blatt der Frühlingsweide
Ins Wasser gleiten ließ . . .

Nicht deshalb liebe ich den Ostwind, weil
Er mir den holden Duft der Birnbaumblüten
Herüberträgt von blumig weißen Höhen, -
Nein, weil er mir das Blatt der Frühlingsweide
An meinen Kahn trieb, - darum lieb ich ihn!

Nicht deshalb lieb ich dieses kleine Blatt
Der Frühlingsweide, weil es mir die Wonnen
Des Lenzes bringt, - nein, weil die junge Frau
Mit einer feinen Nadel meinen Namen
Hineingeritzt hat, - darum lieb ich es!

Confirmed with Hans Bethge, Die chinesische Flöte, Insel Verlag, 1918, page 69.


Based on

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 (Regina Berlinghof) , "The Spring Willow's Leaf", copyright ©, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Regina Berlinghof

This text was added to the website: 2003-11-02
Line count: 16
Word count: 114

The Spring Willow's Leaf
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
I do not love that young woman
Leaning dreamily at the window
Because she owns the towering palace
At the Yellow River - no, I love her
Because slipped this tiny villow leaf
Into the waters . . .

I do not love the east wind
Because he brings the fragrance of pear blossoms
From flowering white heights, -
No, because his blowing made the willow leaf
Float towards my boat, - therefore I love him!

I do not love this tiny little willow leaf
Because it brings the delights of spring, -
No, because the young woman scratched
With a very fine needle my name
Into it, - therefore I love it!


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © by Regina Berlinghof, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., please ask the copyright-holder(s) directly.

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This text was added to the website: 2003-11-02
Line count: 16
Word count: 113