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Wie die Wolke nach der Sonne (1852) Op.6 no.6

Wie die Wolke nach der Sonne

Wie die Wolke nach der Sonne
Voll Verlangen irrt und bangt,
Und durchglüht vom Himmelswonne Sterbend ihr am Busen hangt:
Wie die Sonnenblume richtet
Auf die Sonn ihr Angesicht
Und nicht eh’r auf sie verzichtet,
Bis ihr eignes Auge bricht:
Wie der Aar auf Wolkenpfade
Sehnend steigt ins Himmelszelt
Und berauscht vom Sonnenbade
Blind zur Erde niederfällt:
So auch muss ich schmachten, bangen,
Spähn und trachten, dich zu sehn,
Will an deinen Blicken hangen,
Und an ihrem Glanz vergehn.

As the cloud strays after the sun

As the cloud strays after the sun,
Filled with longing and fear,
And glowing with heavenly bliss
Hangs dying on her breast:
As the sunflower turns
Its face towards the sun
And only fails to do so
When its own eyes close in death:
As the eagle on its cloudy path
Soars yearningly into heaven’s vault
And intoxicated from its sun-bath
Falls blindly back to earth:
So I too must languish, tremble,
Gaze and strive to see you,
I too wish to hang on your gaze
And perish in its radiance.
Translation © Richard Stokes, author of The Book of Lieder (Faber, 2005)

Composer

Johannes Brahms (7 May 1833 – 3 April 1897) was a German composer, pianist, and conductor of the Romantic period. Born in Hamburg into a Lutheran family, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna. 

Brahms has been considered, by his contemporaries and by later writers, as both a traditionalist and an innovator. His music is firmly rooted in the structures and compositional techniques of the Classical masters. While many contemporaries found his music too academic, his contribution and craftsmanship have been admired by many. 

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Poet

August Heinrich Hoffmann von Fallersleben  was a German poet. He is best known for writing "Das Lied der Deutschen", its third stanza now being the national anthem of Germany, and a number of popular children's songs, considered part of the Young Germany movement.

Hoffmann was born in Fallersleben in Lower Saxony, then in the duchy of Brunswick-Lüneburg.

The son of a merchant and mayor of his native city, he was educated at the classical schools of Helmstedt and Braunschweig, and afterwards at the universities of Göttingen and Bonn. His original intention was to study theology, but he soon devoted himself entirely to literature. In 1823 he was appointed custodian of the university library at Breslau, a post which he held till 1838. He was also made extraordinary professor of the German language and literature at that university in 1830, and ordinary professor in 1835. Hoffmann was deprived of his chair in 1842 in consequence of his Unpolitische Lieder (1840–1841, "Unpolitical Songs"), which gave much offence to the authorities in Prussia.

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