TRANSLATION: Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire, Op. 21 - "Madonna"

By Logan K. Young on Aug 20, 2013 06:01 PM EDT

Lost in the fire of last year's Pierrot centennial was translation. After all, it was Otto Erich Hartleben's German--translated from the original French of Albert Giraud--that Arnold Schoenberg had set.

And with Stanley Appelbaum's Anglicised Hartleben turning 20 next year (not to mention having its own Twitter account @PierrotTweets), Classicalite figured a new English language translation was passed due.

To wit, for the next 21 weekdays, we'll be offering a new take on each of Giraud/Hartleben/Appelbaum's 3x7 poems...alongside some of our favorite performances.


Rise, Mother of all pain,
Onto the altar of my poesie!
The blood of your breasts, lean,
Pierced by the sword of frenzy.

Thy forever gaping gashes,
Similar to eyes, red and open.
Rise, Mother of all pain,
Onto the altar of my poesie!

Lacerated in your arms,
You hold the corpse of your son,
To show all humanity--
But the sight of men averts
You, O Mother of all pain.

Up next: "Der Kranke Mond"

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TagsTranslation, Schoenberg, Pierrot Lunaire, Part I, Madonna, Albert Giraud, Otto Erich Hartleben, Stanley Appelbaum

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