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by Hermann Hesse (1877 - 1962)
Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE
Seltsam schöne Hügelfluchten,
Dunkle Berge, helle Matten,
Rote Felsen, braune Schluchten,
Überflort von Tannenschatten!

Wenn darüber eines Turmes
Frommes Läuten mit dem Rauschen
Sich vermischt des Tannensturmes,
Kann ich lange Stunden lauschen.

Dann ergreift wie eine Sage,
Nächtlich am Kamin gelesen,
Das Gedächnis mich der Tage,
Da ich hier zu Haus gewesen.

Da die Fernen edler, weicher,
Da die tannenforstbekränzten
Berge seliger und reicher
Mir im Knabenauge glänzten.

Confirmed with Hermann Hesse, Sämtliche Werke, herausgegeben von Volker Michels, Band 10 Die Gedichte, bearbeitet von Peter Huber, Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp Verlag, 2002, page 75.


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 (Sharon Krebs) , "The Black Forest", copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Forêt Noire", copyright © 2017, (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: 2009-05-01
Line count: 16
Word count: 68

The Black Forest
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Strangely lovely alignments of hills,
Dark mountains, bright meadows,
Red rocky cliffs, brown gullies,
Suffused with the shadows of pines!

When the pious pealing
Of a tower mingles with the soughing
Of the storm of pines,
I can listen for many long hours.

Then I am gripped as if by
A legend read nightly at the fireplace,
By the memory of the days
When this was my home.

When the distances more nobly, more softly,
When the pine-forest-crowned mountains
More blissfully and more richly
Shone in my eyes as a young lad.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2019 by Sharon Krebs, (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: 2019-05-30
Line count: 16
Word count: 92