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Songs

Anbetung (1897) Op. 36 no.4

Anbetung

Die Liebste steht mir vor den Gedanken, wie schön, o wie schön!
Daß mir betäubt die Sinne wanken, wie schön, o wie schön!
Sie hat mit Mienen mich angelächelt, wie hold, o wie hold,
Daß durch das Herz mir die Strahlen schwanken, wie schön, o wie schön
! Die hellen Fluren der Rosenwange, sie winken zur Lust,
Und dunkel flattern die Lockenranken, wie schön, o wie schön!
Des Auges Narzissen wie lieblich, wenn sie erwachen im Tau,
Und wann sie trunken in Schlummer sanken, wie schön, o wie schön!
Die Palm’ aus Eden, die ich in Träumen wie lange gesucht,
Hab’ ich gefunden im Wuchs, dem schlanken, o wie schön!
Der Quell des Lebens, dem ich gedurstet, er hat mich gelabt,
Als meine Lippen aus deinen tranken, wie schön, wie schön!
Des Geistes Hoffen, der Seele Wähnen, dein Traum, Phantasie,
Ist nun getreten in Körperschranken, wie schön, wie schön!
Des Frühlings Blumen, des Himmels Sterne, du bringst sie im Kranz
Mir dar vereinigt. Wie soll ich danken? wie schön, o wie schön!

Adoration

My loved one is ever in my thoughts, how wonderful, how wonderful!
That my dazed senses make me reel, how wonderful, how wonderful!
She has shot me such a smile, how lovely, O how lovely,
That its rays quiver through my heart, how wonderful, how wonderful!
The bright fields of her rosy cheeks, they invite me to pleasure,
And her dark tresses flutter, how wonderful, how wonderful!
The narcissi of her eyes, how sweet they are when they awake in the dew,
And when they drooped heavy with sleep, how wonderful, how wonderful!
The palms of Eden, that long I looked for in dreams,
I’ve found them in her slender form, how wonderful!
The spring of life for which I’ve thirsted, it has refreshed me,
When my lips drank from yours, how wonderful, how wonderful!
My spirit’s hope, my soul’s fancy, your dream, a fantasy,
Have now been made flesh, how wonderful, how wonderful!
The Spring’s flowers, the heaven’s stars you bring to me united
In a wreath, how can I thank you, how wonderful, how wonderful!
Translation © Richard Stokes, author of The Book of Lieder (Faber, 2005)

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Composer

Richard Georg Strauss was a German composer of the late Romantic and early modern eras. He is particularly well-known for his operas, Lieder, and tone poems. 

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Poet

Friedrich Rückert was a German poet, translator, and professor of Oriental languages.

Rückert was born at Schweinfurt and was the eldest son of a lawyer. He was educated at the local Gymnasium and at the universities of Würzburg and Heidelberg. From 1816–1817, he worked on the editorial staff of the Morgenblatt at Stuttgart. Nearly the whole of the year 1818 he spent in Rome, and afterwards he lived for several years at Coburg (1820–1826). Rückert married Luise Wiethaus-Fischer there in 1821. He was appointed a professor of Oriental languages at the University of Erlangen in 1826, and, in 1841, he was called to a similar position in Berlin, where he was also made a privy councillor. In 1849 he resigned his professorship at Berlin, and went to live full-time in his Gut (estate) at Neuses (now a part of Coburg).

When Rückert began his literary career, Germany was engaged in her life-and-death struggle with Napoleon; and in his first volume, Deutsche Gedichte (German Poems), published in 1814 under the pseudonym Freimund Raimar, he gave, particularly in the powerful Geharnischte Sonette (Sonnets in Arms/Harsh Words), vigorous expression to the prevailing sentiment of his countrymen. During 1815 to 1818 appeared Napoleon, eine politische Komödie in drei Stücken (Napoleon, a Political Comedy in Three Parts) of which only two parts were published; and in 1817 Der Kranz der Zeit (The Wreath of Time).

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