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Vor meiner Wiege (1827) D927

Vor meiner Wiege

Das also, das ist der enge Schrein,
Da lag ich einstens als Kind darein,
Da lag ich gebrechlich, hilflos und stumm 
Und zog nur zum Weinen die Lippen krumm.
Ich konnte nichts fassen mit Händchen zart, 
Und war doch gebunden nach Schelmenart; 
Ich hatte Füsschen und lag doch wie lahm, 
Bis Mutter an ihre Brust mich nahm.
Dann lachte ich saugend zu ihr empor,
Sie sang mir von Rosen und Engeln vor,
Sie sang und sie wiegte mich singend in Ruh, 
Und küsste mir liebend die Augen zu.
Sie spannte aus Seide, gar dämmerig grün,
Ein kühliges Zelt hoch über mich hin.
Wo find ich nur wieder solch friedlich Gemach? 
Vielleicht, wenn das grüne Gras mein Dach!
O Mutter, lieb’ Mutter, bleib’ lange noch hier! 
Wer sänge dann tröstlich von Engeln mir? 
Wer küsste mir liebend die Augen zu
Zur langen, zur letzten und tiefesten Ruh’?

Before my cradle

So this is the narrow chest
where I once lay as a baby;
where I lay, frail, helpless and dumb, 
twisting my lips only to cry.
I could grip nothing with my tiny, tender hands, 
yet I was bound like a rogue;
I possessed little feet, and yet lay as if lame, 
until mother took me to her breast.
Then I laughed up at her as I suckled,
and she sang to me of roses and angels;
she sang and with her singing lulled me to sleep, 
and with a kiss lovingly closed my eyes.
She spread a cool tent of dusky green silk
above me.
Where shall I find such a peaceful chamber again? 
Perhaps when the green grass is my roof!
O mother, dear mother, stay here a long time yet! 
Who else would sing to me comforting songs of angels? 
Who else would close my eyes lovingly with a kiss
for the long, last and deepest rest?

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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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Karl (or Carl) Gottfried Ritter von Leitner ( was an Austrian author and publicist from Graz, Styria, Austria.

From 1837 to 1854 he was the first Secretary to the Estates in Styria. He was the editor of the newspaper "Steiermark Zeitschrift" (Styria Times). Karl was the curator of the Landesmuseum Joanneum (Joanneum National Museum) in Graz, Austria from 1858 to 1864, and ge co-founded the Historical Association for Styrian Friendship with Peter Rosegger.

Some of his ballads were set to music by Franz Schubert, including Der Kreuzzug (D932), Der Wallensteiner Lanzknecht beim Trunk (D931), Der Winterabend (D938), Des Fischers Liebesglück (D933), Die Sterne (D939) and Vor meine Wiege (D927).

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