by Wilhelm Müller (1794 - 1827)
Translation © by Jeffrey Williams

Doppelte Gefahr
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Ich armer Fischerbube, 
Wo soll ich schiffen hin? 
Mein Nachen ist gar kleine, 
Gar schüchtern ist mein Sinn.

Im hohen Meere draußen 
Da sind die Wogen groß,
Da läßt aus Ost und Westen
Der Himmel die Stürme los.

Da jagen die Korsaren 
Nach [jungem]1 Christenblut,
Da singen die Sirenen 
Und locken hinab in die Fluth.

Am Ufer sitzt ein Mädchen,
Die hat ein Augenpaar, 
Das droht mit Feuerflammen
Mir tödtliche Gefahr.

Sie strickt an einem Netze, 
Will drin mich fangen ein;
Ihr Haar hat lange Flechten,
Dran soll ich gebunden sein.

Du liebliche Sirene,
Sirene von dem Strand,
Laß deine Stimme tönen
Hell über Meer und Land! 

Tief unten in den Fluthen
Da ist ein goldnes Haus,
Da ruhen die Ertrunknen
In weichen Armen aus.

In diesem Liebesmeere 
Wo wird die Ruhstätt' sein?
Entweder an deinem Herzen, 
Ach! oder im Grabe mein.

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Sieben und siebzig Gedichte aus den hinterlassenen Papieren eines reisenden Waldhornisten, herausgegeben von Wilhelm Müller, Dessau, Bei Christian Georg Ackermann, 1821, pages 132-133. Modernized spelling would require changing "Fluth" to "Flut", "tödtliche" to "tödliche", etc.

1 Marschner: "jungen"

Authorship:

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Jeffrey Williams) , "Double Danger", copyright © 2021, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Jeffrey Williams [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2016-06-02
Line count: 32
Word count: 142

Double Danger
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
I'm a poor fisherman
Where should I go?
My boat is very small,
Quite shy is my sense.

Out in the high seas
The waves are surging big,
That is where from East and West
The sky lets loose the storms.

Pirates hunt
For young Christian blood,
Sirens sing
And lure down into the flood.

On the shore sits a girl,
Who has a pair of eyes,
Whose fire flames threaten
Me with deadly danger.

She is knitting a net,
Wants to catch me inside;
Her hair has long braids
I should be bound to it.

You sweet siren,
Siren from the beach,
Let your voice sound
Bright over sea and land!

Deep down in the waters
There is a golden house,
That is where the drowned ones
Rest in soft arms.

In this sea of love
Where will the place of rest be?
Either in your heart,
Alas, or in my grave?

Authorship:

  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2021 by Jeffrey Williams, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
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This text was added to the website: 2021-02-15
Line count: 32
Word count: 153