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Der Wanderer an den Mond (1826) D870

Der Wanderer an den Mond

Ich auf der Erd’, am Himmel du,
Wir wandern beide rüstig zu:
Ich ernst und trüb, du mild und rein,
Was mag der Unterschied wohl sein?
Ich wandre fremd von Land zu Land,
So heimatlos, so unbekannt;
Bergauf, bergab, Wald ein, Wald aus,
Doch bin ich nirgend, ach! zu Haus.
Du aber wanderst auf und ab
Aus Ostens Wieg’ in Westens Grab,
Wallst Länder ein und Länder aus,
Und bist doch, wo du bist, zu Haus.
Der Himmel, endlos ausgespannt,
Ist dein geliebtes Heimatland:
O glücklich, wer, wohin er geht,
Doch auf der Heimat Boden steht!

The wanderer's address to the moon

I on earth, you in the sky,
both of us travel briskly on;
I solemn and gloomy, you gentle and pure, what can
be the difference between us?
I wander, a stranger, from land to land,
so homeless, so unknown;
up and down mountains, in and out of forests, yet,
alas, nowhere am I at home.
But you wander up and down,
from the east’s cradle to the west’s grave, travel
from country to country
and yet are at home wherever you are.
The sky, infinitely extended,
is your beloved homeland;
O happy he who, wherever he goes,
still stands on his native soil!
Translation by Richard Wigmore

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Franz Peter Schubert was an late Classical and early Romantic composer. He produced a vast oeuvre during his short life, composing more the 600 vocal works (largely Lieder), and well as several symphonies, operas, and a large body of piano music. He was uncommonly gifted from a young age, but appreciation of his music was limited during his lifetime. His work became more popular in the decades after his death, and was praised by 19th century composers, including Mendelssohn, Schumann, Brahms, and Liszt.

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