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Auf dem Kirchhofe (1886) Op. 105 no.4

Part of a series or song cycle:

Fünf Lieder (Op.105)

Auf dem Kirchhofe

Der Tag ging regenschwer und sturmbewegt,
Ich war an manch vergeßnem Grab gewesen.
Verwittert Stein und Kreuz, die Kränze alt,
Die Namen überwachsen, kaum zu lesen.
Der Tag ging sturmbewegt und regenschwer,
Auf allen Gräbern fror das Wort: Gewesen.
Wie sturmestot die Särge schlummerten—
Auf allen Gräbern taute still: Genesen.

In the Churchyard

The day was heavy with rain and storms,
I had stood by many a forgotten grave.
Weathered stones and crosses, faded wreaths,
The names overgrown, scarcely to be read.
The day was heavy with storms and rains,
On each grave froze the word: Deceased.
How the coffins slumbered, dead to the storm—
Silent dew on each grave proclaimed: Released.
Translations by Richard Stokes, author of The Book of Lieder (Faber, 2005)


Liliencron first attracted attention by the volume of poems, Adjutantenritte und andere Gedichte (1883), which was followed by several unsuccessful dramas, a volume of short stories, Eine Sommerschlacht (1886), and a novel Breide Hummelsbüttel (1887). His complete works were published in 14 volumes (1904–1905); his Gedichte having been previously collected in four volumes under the titles Kampf und SpieleKämpfe und Ziele"Nebel und Sonne and Bunte Beute (1897–1903).


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