Die Welt ohne schwere
Draft title for Mahler’s Symphony IV
In childhood I believed
In a world without pain;
A place where barbs couldn’t hurt me.
But then I lived; I learnt, I burnt –
If there is such a world, it’s not here.
I do not remember where I read this proposed title for Mahler IV. ‘Schwere’ has many translations. Based on what I know of Mahler IV, I have used ‘difficulty’ although one entertaining prospect was translating it as ‘gravity’, which would cause a very different state of existence…
The Hapless Neo-Romantic
Update 10:41, 11/6/2014 – A German-speaking friend has informed me that ‘A world without graveness’ is a more appropriate translation. In which case the poem is a rather poor response to Mahler!