by Rainer Maria Rilke (1875 - 1926)
Translation © by Elisabeth Siekhaus

Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE GRE ITA
Herr, es ist Zeit. Der Sommer war sehr groß.
Leg deinen Schatten auf die Sonnenuhren,
und auf den Fluren lass die Winde los. 

Befiehl den letzten Früchten, voll zu sein;
gib ihnen noch zwei südlichere Tage,
dränge sie zur Vollendung hin, und jage
die letzte Süße in den schweren Wein. 

Wer jetzt kein Haus hat, baut sich keines mehr.
Wer jetzt allein ist, wird es lange bleiben,
wird wachen, lesen, lange Briefe schreiben
und wird in den Alleen hin und her
unruhig wandern, wenn die Blätter treiben. 


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Settings in other languages, adaptations, or excerpts:

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

  • ENG English (Elisabeth Siekhaus) , "Fall day", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Jour d'automne", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GRE Greek (Ελληνικά) [singable] (Christakis Poumbouris) , "Φθινοπωρινή μέρα", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2007-06-23
Line count: 12
Word count: 87

Fall day
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Lord:  it is time.  Summer was huge.
Lay your shadows onto the sun dials,
And in the fields let your winds loose.

Order the last fruits to be full,
Give them two more southerly days,
Urge them towards completion and chase
The last sweetness into the heavy wine.

Who now has no house, does not build himself one any more.
Who now is alone,  will remain so for a long time,
Will waken, read, write long letters,
And will wander in the avenues back and forth
Restlessly when the leaves scatter.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2008 by Elisabeth Siekhaus, (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.

Based on


This text was added to the website: 2008-04-04
Line count: 12
Word count: 91