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Frühlingsgedrange Op. 26 no.1


Frühlingskinder im bunten Gedränge,
Flatternde Blüten, duftende Hauche,
Schmachtende, jubelnde Liebesgesänge
Stürzen an’s Herz mir aus jedem Strauche.
Frühlingskinder mein Herz umschwärmen,
Flüstern hinein mit schmeichelnden Worten,
Rufen hinein mit trunknem Lärmen,
Rütteln an längst verschlossnen Pforten.
Frühlingskinder, mein Herz umringend,
Was doch sucht ihr darin so dringend?
Hab’ ich’s verraten euch jüngst im Traume,
Schlummernd unterm Blütenbaume?
Brachten euch Morgenwinde die Sage,
Daß ich im Herzen eingeschlossen
Euren lieblichen Spielgenossen,
Heimlich und selig – ihr Bildnis trage?

Thronging Spring

Children of Spring in colourful throngs,
Fluttering blossoms, fragrant breezes,
Languishing, jubilant songs of love
Storm my heart from every shrub.
Children of Spring swarm round my heart,
Whisper their way in with flattering words,
Clamour their way in with drunken cries,
Rattle at doors long since closed.
Children of Spring surrounding my heart,
What do you seek there so urgently?
Have I lately revealed to you in a dream,
Asleep beneath a blossoming tree,
Did the morning breezes rumour to you
That I have locked your sweet playmates
In my heart,
Where secretly and blissfully I hide their picture?
Stokes translation from Hyperion Strauss, Vol. 5

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Richard Georg Strauss was a German composer of the late Romantic and early modern eras. He is particularly well-known for his operas, Lieder, and tone poems. 

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Nikolaus Lenau was the nom de plume of Nikolaus Franz Niembsch Edler von Strehlenau, a German-language Austrian poet.

He was born at Schadat, now Lenauheim, Romania, then in Hungary. His father, a Habsburg government official, died in 1807 in Budapest, leaving his children in the care of their mother, who remarried in 1811. In 1819 Nikolaus went to the University of Vienna; he subsequently studied Hungarian law at Pozsony (Bratislava) and then spent the next four years qualifying himself in medicine. Unable to settle down to any profession, he began writing verse. The disposition to sentimental melancholy inherited from his mother, stimulated by disappointments in love and by the prevailing fashion of the romantic school of poetry, descended into gloom after his mother's death in 1829.

Soon afterwards, however, a legacy from his grandmother enabled him to devote himself wholly to poetry. His first published poems appeared in 1827, in Johann Gabriel Seidl's Aurora. In 1831 he moved to Stuttgart, where he published a volume of Gedichte (1832) dedicated to the Swabian poet, Gustav Schwab. He also made the acquaintance of Ludwig Uhland, Justinus Kerner, Karl Mayer and others. His restless spirit longed for change, and he determined to seek peace and freedom in America.

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