by William Cullen Bryant (1794 - 1878)
Translation by Miguel Antonio Caro (1845 - 1909)

Hymn of the City
Language: English 
Not in the solitude
Alone may man commune with heaven, or see
Only in savage wood
And sunny vale, the present Deity;
Or only hear his voice
Where the winds whisper and the waves rejoice.

Even here do I behold
Thy steps, Almighty!--here, amidst the crowd,
Through the great city rolled,
With everlasting murmur deep and loud --
Choking the ways that wind
`Mongst the proud piles, the work of humankind.

Thy golden sunshine comes
From the round heaven, and on their dwellings lies,
And lights their inner homes;
For them thou fill`st with air the unbounded skies,
And givest them the stores
Of ocean, and the harvests of its shores.

Thy spirit is around,
Quickening the restless mass that sweeps along;
And this eternal sound--
Voices and footfalls of the numberless throng--
Like the resounding sea,
Or like the rainy tempest, speaks of thee.

And when the hours of rest
Come, like a calm upon the mid-sea brine,
Hushing its billowy breast--
The quiet of that moment too is thine;
It breathes of him who keeps
The vast and helpless city while it sleeps.


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

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2005-03-15
Line count: 30
Word count: 184

Himno de la ciudad
Language: Spanish (Español)  after the English 
No sólo en yermo llano,
Ni allá en selvoso apartamiento esquivo,
 El pensamiento humano
Puede á Dios contemplar presente y vivo;
 Ni sólo oye su acento
Donde la onda retumba y silba el viento.

 También aquí presente
Yo te adoro ¡Señor! aquí te miro,
 Donde bulle la gente
Con vasta resonancia y vario giro
 Entre muros, do ufana
Puso su sello audaz la industria humana.

 Tu luz, vertida á mares
Del combo cielo, la ciudad inunda,
 Penetra los hogares,
Espacio lleno de aire nos circunda;
 Por ti el mar sus tributos
Nos da, y las costas sus preñados frutos.

 Goza vital aliento
Tanto agrupado ser, y á ti lo debe;
 Y el sordo movimiento
De inmensa multitud que habla y se mueve,
 Tu alto poder proclama
Cual tormenta que zumba ó mar que brama.

 Y á la hora del descanso,
Cual duerme la alta mar, cesa el tumulto;
 Y aquel silencio manso,
Obra tuya también, te ofrece culto;
 Tú, soberano dueño,
De la inerte ciudad guardas el sueño.

Confirmed with Traducciones poéticas (1889), translated by Miguel Antonio Caro, LIBRERÍA AMERICANA, Bogota, 1889, pp 195-196.


Based on

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

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Researcher for this text: Andrew Schneider [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2019-11-04
Line count: 30
Word count: 168