Translation © by Emily Ezust

Wandern lieb' ich für mein Leben
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT ENG FRE FRE ITA
Wandern lieb' ich für mein Leben,
Lebe eben wie ich kann,
Wollt' ich mir auch Mühe geben,
Paßt' es mir doch gar nicht an.

Schöne alte Lieder weiß ich,
In der Kälte, ohne Schuh'
Draußen in die Saiten reiß' ich,
Weiß nicht, wo ich abends ruh'.

Manche Schöne macht wohl Augen,
Meinet, ich gefiel' ihr sehr,
Wenn ich nur was wollte [taugen]1,
So ein armer Lump nicht wär'. --

Mag dir Gott ein'n Mann bescheren,
Wohl mit Haus und Hof versehn!
Wenn wir zwei zusammen wären,
Möcht mein Singen mir vergehn.

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Joseph von Eichendorff, Sämtliche Gedichte und Versepen, Frankfurt am Main und Leipzig: Insel Verlag, 2001, pages 262-263.

1 Kiel: "fangen"


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):

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , "El músic de carrer", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , "I love the wandering life", copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Le musicien ambulant", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Stéphane Goldet) (Pierre de Rosamel) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Amelia Maria Imbarrato) , "Il musicante", copyright © 2008, (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: 16
Word count: 90

I love the wandering life
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
 I love the wandering life:
 I live how I can.
 If I were to trouble myself about anything,
 it would not suit me at all.
 I know lovely old songs;
 in the cold, without shoes,
 I pluck my strings out there
 and do not know where I'll sleep in the evening!
 Many a lovely girl makes eyes at me,
 as if to say she would like me well
 if I only made something of myself
 and were not such a poor beggar.
 May God provide you with a husband,
 and a house and yard!
 If we two were together,
 my singing would die.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © by Emily Ezust

    Emily Ezust permits her translations to be reproduced without prior permission for printed (not online) programs to free-admission concerts only, provided the following credit is given:

    Translation copyright © by Emily Ezust,
    from the LiederNet Archive --

    For any other purpose, please write to the e-mail address below to request permission and discuss possible fees.

Based on


This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 16
Word count: 104