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HOME>Multimedia>Schubert-related Programs>Program:"Water Songs and Water Landscape">"Gondelfahrer"
Campanile di San Marco is seen at dusk from across the Giudecca along with the waterfront of Venice in the San Marco area: Photo of Venice, Italy by Tomoko Yamamoto

© Tomoko Yamamoto, All Rights Reserved
Venice Skyline at Dusk:Campanile di San Marco and Pallazo Ducale

Gondelfahrer, Gondolier


Poem: Johann Mayrhofer
Translation by © Tomoko Yamamoto

There is a word in German, Geisterstunde, meaning literally witch hour when spirits or witches would come out at midnight. The poem talks about the hour when only the boatman stays awake, rowing his boat, held up in the bosom of the sea. The midnight toll of St. Mark's Tower is expressed as the piano strikes the same chord twelve times. Schubert repeats the last phrase "only the boatman stays awake."
Es tanzen Mond und Sterne
Den flücht'gen Geisterreih'n
Wer wird von Erdensorgen
Befangen immer sein!
Du kannst in Mondesstrahlen
Nun, meine Barke, wallen
Und aller Schranken los
Wiegt dich des Meeres Schoss.
Vom Markusturme tönte
Der spruch der Mitternacht:
Sie schlummern friedlich alle,
Und nur der Schiffer wacht.
Und nur der Schiffer wacht.
The moon and the stars dance
The fleeting spirit dance
Who will be forever
Fettered by earthly cares!
You can float in the moonbeam,
Now, my boat.
And free from all the restraints,
Rock yourself in the bosom of the sea.
The decree of midnight is tolled
By the Tower of St. Mark's
They all slumber peacefully
And only the boatman stays awake,
And only the boatman stays awake.


Back to the outline of a program of songs and slides by Tomoko Yamamoto in English for "Water Songs and Water Landscape: Multimedia Show," or in German for "Wasserlieder und Wasserlandschaft: Multimedia Show"

Keywords:Gondelfahrer, Gondolier, Gondelführer, Franz Schubert, Johann Mayrhofer, Tomoko Yamamoto, Mitternacht, midnight, boatman, Meere, sea, boat, Multimedia Show, water songs, boat songs, Wasserlieder, water landscape, Wasserlandschaft, Markusturme, Campanile di San Marco, St. Mark's Bell Tower, Basilica Domes, dusk, Venice, Venezia, Venedig, Italy, Italia, Italien
Last Update: June 6, 2007