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Original poem

Hälfte des Lebens

Mit gelben Birnen hänget
Und voll mit wilden Rosen
Das Land in den See,
Ihr holden Schwäne,
Und trunken von Küssen
Tunkt ihr das Haupt
Ins heilignüchterne Wasser.

Weh mir, wo nehm’ ich, wenn
Es Winter ist, die Blumen, und wo
Den Sonnenschein,
Und Schatten der Erde?
Die Mauern stehn
Sprachlos und kalt, im Winde
Klirren die Fahnen.

Versions

Poem in translation

Dimidium Vitae

flava pirus, rosa silvarum: defertur onusta

    terra superficie lapsa lacustris aquae.

suaviolis olor ebrius it: fas dedere collum:

    sobrius in sacrum dat caput ire lacum.

e nive qua capiam flores, vim solis, et umbram?

    signa aquilone sonant; moenia muta rigent.

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