by Elinor Wylie (1885 - 1928)
Translation © by Bertram Kottmann

Little elegy
Language: English 
Available translation(s): GER
[Withouten]1 you
No rose can grow;
No leaf be green
If never seen
Your sweetest face;
No bird have grace
Or [power]2 to sing;
Or anything
Be kind, or fair,
And you nowhere.

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Rorem: "Without"
2 Duke, Howe: "pow'r"


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):

  • GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (Bertram Kottmann) , "Klagelied", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Ted Perry , Garrett Medlock [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 10
Word count: 33

Language: German (Deutsch)  after the English 
Wo du nicht bist,
kein' Ros' erblüht;
kein Blatt ergrünt,
erschaut es nicht
dein lieb Gesicht;
kein Vogel singt 
sein zierlich Lied;
und keine Lieb'
an keinem Ort,
und du bist fort.


  • Singable translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2011 by Bertram Kottmann, (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.

    Bertram Kottmann.  Contact: BKottmann (AT)

    If you wish to commission a new translation, please contact:

Based on


This text was added to the website: 2011-06-20
Line count: 10
Word count: 32