by Anna (Nuhn) Ritter (1865 - 1921)
Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Liegt irgendwo im weiten Meer
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE
Liegt irgendwo im weiten Meer
Ein selig, weltverloren Land,
Still ziehn die Wolken drüber her,
Und leise ebbt die Fluth am Strand.

Uralte Bäume [grünen]1 dort
Und wölben sich zum dichten Hain,
In den drang nie ein Menschenwort,
Nie eines Menschen Blick hinein.

Aus purpurroten Kelchen steigt
Ein seltsam süßer, müder Hauch,
Versonnen sich der Himmel neigt
Und reglos träumen Busch und Strauch.

Am Ufer schaukelt sich ein Kahn,
Die Wellen plätschern [sacht]2 am Kiel.
Wen holt er ab auf weiter Bahn,
Wen trägt er her zum selgen Ziel?

Ach, [daß]3 der Kahn mich holen müßt'
[Aus]4 dieser bangen, bangen Zeit,
Daß ich den Weg zu finden wüßt
Zur Insel der Vergessenheit.

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Anna Ritter, Gedichte, Einundzwanzigste Auflage, Stuttgart und Berlin: J.G. Cotta'sche Buchhandlung Nachfolger, 1905, pages 136-137.

1 Thuille: "blühen"
2 Thuille: "leis"
3 Thuille: "wenn"
4 Thuille: "In"


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 Isle of Oblivion", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "L'île de l'oubli", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2008-04-28
Line count: 20
Word count: 112

The Isle of Oblivion
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Somewhere in the wide ocean
[There is] a blessed Land, lost to the world,
Clouds pass over it silently
And the tide laps softly at its shore.

Ancient trees [flourish]1 there
And arch to form a thick grove,
Into which never penetrated a human word,
Nor a human gaze.

From crimson-red calyces there rises
A curiously sweet, languid breath,
The heavens incline themselves pensively
And, motionless, bushes and shrubs dream.

At the shore a boat is rocking,
The waves lap [gently]2 along its keel.
Whom does it fetch on its wide journey,
Whom does it carry to the blessed destination?

Ah, [that]3 the boat were to fetch me
[From out of]4 these anxious, anxious times,
That I might know how to find the way
To the isle of oblivion!

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Thuille: "bloom"
2 Thuille: "quietly"
3 Thuille: "if"
4 Thuille: "In"


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2012 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: 2012-07-11
Line count: 20
Word count: 129