by Rainer Maria Rilke (1875 - 1926)
Translation © by Walter A. Aue

Da neigt sich die Stunde und rührt mich...
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE
Da neigt sich die Stunde und rührt mich an
mit klarem, metallenem Schlag:
mir zittern die Sinne. Ich fühle: ich kann -
und ich fasse den plastischen Tag.

Nichts war [noch]1 vollendet, eh ich es erschaut,
ein jedes Werden stand still.
Meine Blicke sind reif, und wie eine Braut
kommt jedem das Ding, das er will.

Nichts ist mir zu klein, und ich lieb es trotzdem
und mal' es auf Goldgrund und groß,
und halte es hoch, und ich weiß nicht wem
löst es die Seele los...

S. Ebel sets stanzas 1-2

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Confirmed with Rainer Maria Rilke, Werke, kommentierte Ausgabe in vier Bänden, Band 1 Gedichte 1895 bis 1910, herausgegeben von Manfred Engel und Ulrich Fülleborn, Frankfurt am Main und Leipzig: Insel Verlag, 1996, page 157.

1 Omitted by Ebel.


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 (Walter A. Aue) , "The hour is turning", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Alors l'heure se penche et me touche", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 12
Word count: 87

The hour is turning
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
The hour is turning and touches me, then
sounds clear and metallic its chime:
My senses are trembling. I feel that I can -
and I grasp that reworkable time.

And nothing is finished ere there I abide,
and ev'ry becoming stands still.
My eyes have matured: like winning a bride
each sight wins whichever it will.

There's nothing too small that I would not love
and paint, on gold ground and whole -
not knowing from whom (as I lift it above)
it is liberating the soul . . . 


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2008 by Walter A. Aue, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you must ask the copyright-holder(s) directly for permission. If you receive no response, you must consider it a refusal.

    Walter A. Aue.  Contact: waue (AT) dal (DOT) ca

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Based on


This text was added to the website: 2008-10-16
Line count: 12
Word count: 91