The following comes to us from our friend, Luke Ferraguti:

As an accompanist, I occasionally stumble across a brilliant piece of poetry in vocal music. I recently discovered Louis Spohr’s Six German Songs, composed in 1837. Spohr wrote the poems and composed the music himself. The fifth song of the set, Das Heimliche Lied (The Secret Song), was particularly heavy-hitting — thanks be to God, our forgiving Confidant.

Das Heimliche Lied (The Secret Song)

There are secret pains
Whose lament is never tongued;
Borne deep in the heart
They are unknown to the world.

There is a secret longing
That always shies from the light;
There are hidden tears
A stranger does not see.

There is a quiet sinking
Into an inner world
Where peaceful meadows beckon,
Lit by the gleam of stars,

Where, all boundaries fallen,
The soul raises Heaven
And with jubilation
Confides its thoughts to the lips.

There is a quiet passing
Into silent, desolate pain,
And no one is allowed to see
That heavy-pressed heart.

It does not say what it needs,
And though it breaks with grief,
Tortured to death and bleeding,
The stranger does not see it.

There is a gentle slumber
Where sweet peace abides,
Where quiet rest heals the cares
Of the weary soul.

There is yet a lovely hoping
That soars above all worlds,
Where, open to another heart,
The heart lies filled with love.