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Im Walde „Waldesnacht“ (1820) D708

Im Walde „Waldesnacht“

Windes Rauschen, Gottes Flügel,
Tief in kühler Waldesnacht;
Wie der Held in Rosses Bügel,
Schwingt sich des Gedankens Macht.
Wie die alten Tannen sausen,
Hört man Geistes Wogen brausen.
Herrlich ist der Flamme Leuchten
In des Morgenglanzes Rot,
Oder die das Feld beleuchten,
Blitze, schwanger oft von Tod.
Rasch die Flamme zuckt und lodert,
Wie zu Gott hinauf gefordert.
Ewig’s Rauschen sanfter Quellen,
Zaubert Blumen aus dem Schmerz;
Trauer doch in linden Wellen
Schlägt uns lockend an das Herz;
Fernab hin der Geist gezogen,
Die uns locken, durch die Wogen.
Drang des Lebens aus der Hülle,
Kampf der starken Triebe wild;
Wird zur schönsten Liebesfülle,
Durch des Geistes Hauch gestillt.
Schöpferischer Lüfte Wehen
Fühlt man durch die Seele gehen.
Windes Rauschen, Gottes Flügel,
Tief in kühler Waldesnacht!
Frei gegeben alle Zügel,
Schwingt sich des Gedankens Macht,
Hört in Lüften ohne Grausen
Den Gesang der Geister brausen.

In the forest 'Night in the forest'

The rushing of the wind, God’s own wings,
deep in the cool night of the forest,
as the hero leaps on to his horse,
so does the power of thought soar.
As the old pine-trees rustle,
so we hear the surging waves of the spirit.
Glorious is the flame’s glow
in the red light of morning,
or the flashes that light up the fields,
often pregnant with death.
Swiftly the flame flickers and blazes,
as if summoned upward to God.
The eternal murmuring of gentle springs
conjures flowers from sorrow;
yet sadness beats alluringly against our hearts
in gentle waves.
The spirit is borne far away
by those waves that allure us.
Life’s urge to be free of its fetters,
the struggle of strong, wild impulses,
is turned to love’s fair fulfilment,
stilled by the breath of the spirit.
We feel the creative breath
pervade our souls.
The rushing of the wind, God’s own wings,
deep in the cool night of the forest;
free from all restraints
the power of thought soars;
without fear we hear the song of the spirits
echoing in the breezes.
Translations by Richard Wigmore first published by Gollancz and reprinted in the Hyperion Schubert Song Edition

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Composer

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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Poet

Karl Wilhelm Friedrich (after 1814: von) Schlegel  was a German poet, literary critic, philosopher, philologist and indologist. With his older brother, August Wilhelm Schlegel, he was one of the main figures of the Jena romantics. He was a zealous promoter of the Romantic movement and inspired Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Adam Mickiewicz and Kazimierz Brodziński. Schlegel was a pioneer in Indo-European studies, comparative linguistics, in what became known as Grimm's law, and morphological typology. As a young man he was an atheist, a radical, and an individualist. Ten years later, the same Schlegel converted to Catholicism. Around 1810 he was a diplomat and journalist in the service of Metternich, surrounded by monks and pious men of society.

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