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Todesmusik (1822) D758


In des Todes Feierstunde,
Wenn ich einst von hinnen scheide,
Und den Kampf, den letzten leide,
Senke, heilige Kamöne,
Noch einmal die stillen Lieder,
Noch einmal die reinen Töne
Auf die tiefe Abschiedswunde
Meines Busens heilend nieder.
Hebe aus dem ird’schen Ringen
Die bedrängte reine Seele,
Trage sie auf deinen Schwingen:
Dass sie sich dem Licht vermähle.
O da werden mich die Klänge
Süss und wonnevoll umwehen,
Und die Ketten, die ich sprenge,
Werden still und leicht vergehen.
Alles Grosse werd’ ich sehen,
Das im Leben mich beglückte,
Alles Schöne, das mir blühte,
Wird verherrlicht vor mir stehen.
Jeden Stern, der mir erglühte,
Der mit freundlichem Gefunkel
Durch das grauenvolle Dunkel
Meines kurzen Weges blickte,
Jede Blume, die ihn schmückte,
Werden mir die Töne bringen.
Und die schrecklichen Minuten,
Wo ich schmerzlich könnte bluten,
Werden mich mit Lust umklingen,
Und Verklärung werd’ ich sehen,
Ausgegossen über allen Dingen.
So in Wonne werd’ ich untergehen,
Süss verschlungen von der Freude Fluten.


In the solemn hour of death,
when one day I depart hence
and suffer my last battle,
then, sacred muse, let your tranquil songs
and pure tones
descend one more time
to heal the deep wound of parting
within my heart.
Raise my pure, anguished soul
from this earthly struggle;
bear it on your wings
to be united with the light.
Then harmonies will enfold me
in sweet bliss,
and the chains which I shall break
will vanish, silently, lightly.
I shall behold all the greatness
that gave me joy in life;
all the beauty that flowered for me
will be glorified before me.
Those tones will bring back to me
every star that shone for me,
that with its friendly light
looked down upon my brief journey
through the fearful darkness,
and every flower that adorned my path.
And those terrifying minutes
when I might have bled in agony
will envelop me with joyous sounds.
I shall behold
all things transfigured.
Thus I shall perish in bliss,
sweetly engulfed by waves of joy.

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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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Franz Adolf Friedrich Schober, since 1801 von Schobe, was an Austrian poet, librettist, lithographer, actor in Breslau and Legationsrat in Weimar.

Schober was born to Austrian parents in Sweden. Educated in the Schnepfenthal Salzmann School, Akademisches Gymnasium (Vienna) and Kremsmünster Abbey, he returned to Vienna, where he began to study philosophy and met the composer Franz Schubert, his friends Johann Mayrhofer, Joseph von Spaun and the painters Leopold Kupelwieser and Moritz von Schwind. Between 1823 and 1825, Schober was an actor at the theatre in Breslau under the pseudonym "Torupson". In the 1840s, Schober was in close contact with Franz Liszt. In 1856 he married the author Thekla von Gumpert; afterwards he lived in Budapest, Munich and Dresden.

Schober wrote lyric poetry and in 1821 the libretto for Schubert's opera Alfonso und Estrella.

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