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Songs

Songs

Ballade (1815) D134

Ballade

Ein Fräulein schaut vom hohen Turm 
Das weite Meer so bang;
Zum trauerschweren Zitherschlag 
Hallt düster ihr Gesang:
„Mich halten Schloss und Riegel fest, 
Mein Retter weilt so lang.“
Sei wohl getrost, du edle Maid! 
Schau, hinterm Kreidenstein treibt 
In der Buchtung Dunkelheit
Ein Kriegesboot herein:
Der Aarenbusch, der Rosenschild, 
Das ist der Retter dein!
Schon ruft des Hunen Horn
Zum Streit hinab zum Muschelrain.
„Willkommen, schmucker Knabe, mir, 
Bist du zur Stelle kummen?
Gar bald vom schwarzen Schilde dir 
Hau’ ich die goldnen Blumen.
Die achtzehn Blumen blutbetaut, 
Les’ deine königliche Braut
Auf aus dem Sand der Wogen, 
Nur flink die Wehr gezogen!“
Zum Turm auf schallt das Schwertergeklirr! 
Wie harrt die Braut so bang!
Der Kampf dröhnt laut durchs Waldrevier, 
So heftig und so lang,
Und endlich, endlich deucht es ihr, 
Erstirbt der Hiebe Klang.
Es kracht das Schloss, die Tür klafft auf,
Die ihren sieht sie wieder;
Sie eilt im atemlosen Lauf
Zum Muschelplane nieder.
Da liegt der Peiniger zerschellt, 
Doch weh, dicht neben nieder, 
Ach! decken’s blutbespritzte Feld 
Des Retters blasse Glieder.
Still sammelt sie die Rosen auf 
In ihren keuschen Schoss
Und bettet ihren Lieben drauf; 
Ein Tränchen stiehlt sich los 
Und taut die breiten Wunden an 
Und sagt: ich habe das getan!
Da frass es einen Schandgesell
Des Raubes im Gemüt,
Dass die, die seinen Herrn verdarb, 
Frei nach der Heimat zieht.
Vom Busch, wo er verkrochen lag 
In wilder Todeslust,
Pfeift schnell sein Bolzen durch die Luft,
In ihre keusche Brust.
Da ward ihr wohl im Brautgemach, 
Im Kiesgrund, still und klein;
Sie senkten sie dem Lieben nach, 
Dort unter einem Stein,
Den ihr von Disteln überweht.
Noch nächst des Turmes Trümmern seht. 

Ballad

From the high tower a maiden
looks anxiously down over the vast sea.
To the heavy, mournful chords of her zither 
her gloomy song resounds:
‘Lock and bolt keep me captive here,
my saviour tarries so long.’
Take comfort, noble maid!
Look, beyond the chalk cliff
a warship approaches
in the darkness of the bay;
with eagle plumes, and rose-decked shield; 
behold your saviour!
Already the hero’s horn
calls to battle on the shell-covered shore.
‘Welcome, fair youth,
have you reached your destination?
Soon I shall cut the golden flowers
from your black shield.
Let the eighteen flowers, stained with blood, 
be gathered by your royal bride
from the sand washed by the waves. 
Quickly, draw your sword!’
The rattling of swords echoes up to the tower! 
How anxiously the bride waits!
The clamour of battle resounded
long and fiercely.
Then at length, it seems to her, 
the clash of weapons ceases.
The lock is burst, the door opens, 
she sees her people once more;
in breathless haste she runs down 
to the shell-covered shore.
There lies her tormentor’s mangled body. 
But alas! Close beside him
her saviour’s pale limbs
cover the blood-bespattered field.
Silently she gathers the roses
in her chaste lap,
and on them she lays her beloved.
A tear falls,
bathing his gaping wounds
and signifying: ‘I have done the deed.’
But an evil accomplice in her abduction 
was tortured by the thought
that she who destroyed his master 
would return home freed.
From the bush where he lay hidden
in frenzied blood lust,
his arrow whistled rapidly through the air 
into her chaste heart.
She was happy in her bridal chamber, 
deep among the pebbles, small and silent; 
they lowered her to join her beloved 
beneath a stone
that, overgrown with thistles,
you can still see beside the ruined tower.

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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.

Information from Wikipedia. Read more here.


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Poet

Joseph Kenner was a public official, artist, and district governor of Freistadt and Bad Ischl. He is known for his acquaintance with composer Franz Schubert.

Kenner was born illegitimate in Vienna and raised by his mother (born: Harl) in Linz with the musical von Spaun family. He attended the seminary of Kremsmünster Abbey from 1805 to 1811, where he met Franz von Schober and Franz von Schlechta. He then entered the seminary in Vienna, where he met the composer Franz Schubert, who set several of his poems to music. His close friendship extended to others in Schubert's circle, including painter Moritz von Schwind, who approved of Kenner's own paintings, including a cycle of martyr illustrations, Der Liedler.

Kenner shared his recollections of Schubert with Schubert's early biographer Ferdinand Luib in 1858. These were cited by Otto Erich Deutsch.

Kenner studied jurisprudence and political science and became an intern of the district and tax office in Linz in 1822 and promoted to magistrate in 1843. He served from 1850 to 1854 as district governor of Freistadt and from 1854 to 1857 of Ischl.

Taken from Wikipedia. To view the full Wikipedia article please click here.


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