Müller: The phantom suns

by Wilhelm Müller (1794-1827)

Set by Franz Peter Schubert (1797-1828), “Die Nebensonnen”, op. 89 no. 23, D. 911 no. 23 (1827), from Winterreise, no. 23. Translation Copyright Arthur Rishi. Please do not copy, publish, or distribute this translation without permission from the translator.

Die Nebensonnen

sun dogs

I saw three suns in the sky,
I stared at them long and hard;
And they, too, stood staring
As if unwilling to leave me.


Ah, but you are not my suns!
Stare at others in the face, then:
Until recently I, too, had three;
Now the best two are gone.


But let the third one go, too!
In the darkness I will fare better.