Du bist die Zukunft (download)


Medium voice and piano–4′

The sun rises in the piano introduction, preparing Rilke’s mystical meditation. A song with a powerful spiritual, but non-sectarian message.

Listen to a performance by Clara Osowski, mezzo, Tyler Wottrich, piano

Preview the score:




Du bist die Zukunft (You are the future)

Medium voice, piano
3′ duration
German text: Rainer Maria Rilke, from Stundenbuch (The Book of Hours) II, 22
Commissioned by the American Composers Forum in honor of Hella Mears Hueg.
Premiere—2005, by Jake Endres and Thelma Hunter, Saint Paul, MN.
4 pages
Voice range:

For other works on texts by Rilke, see Ein Gebet, for high voice and piano, and Forever Toward You, for SATB unaccompanied.

Du bist die Zukunft, großes Morgenrot,
über den Ebenen der Ewigkeit.
Du bist der Hahnschrei nach der Nacht der Zeit,
der Tau, die Morgenmette und die Maid,
der fremde Mann, die Mutter und der Tod.Du bist die sich verwandelnde Gestalt,
die immer einsam aus dem Schicksal ragt,
die unbejubelt bleibt und unbeklagt
und unbeschrieben wie ein wilder Wald.Du bist der Dinge tiefer Inbegriff,
der seines Wesens letztes Wort verschweigt
und sich den Andern immer anders zeigt:
dem Schiff als Küste und dem Land als Schiff.Rainer Maria Rilke, From The Book of Pilgrimage (1901)
You are the future, immense glow of morning
over the plains of eternity.
You are the cock-crow after the night of eons,
dew, morning matins, a young girl,
the other, the mother, and death itself.You are the ever-changing shape,
which towers ever up as destiny,
which remains as unsung and unlamented
and undescribed as a wilderness.You are the deepest essence of things,
the last word of which is kept secret,
and which ever appears as something else:
to the ship as the shore, to the coast as a ship.Trans. DET




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