08 October 2008

Kommt her und schaut, kommt

Here is my translation of "Kommt her und schaut, kommt" by Michael Bapzien (1628-1693). The most fitting melody is Herzliebster Jesu (attr. G. Franc; J. Crüger), but Crüger's Lobet den Herren, alle might also work, though it is a little joyful. Curiously, Dirksen's Innisfree Farm bears a little similarity to this melody.
1. Come here and see, come, with your hearts attending
Christ's pain and torment and distress unending,
Surely alone God's winepress He is treading,
By His blood-shedding.

2. Oh! see, how our sins with such throes are thwarted,
On Olivet, He, like a worm contorted,
Writhes in such anguish, drops of grief perspiring
Blood's form acquiring.

3. God here Himself collapses in the garden,
Angels must bear Him up, Who bears our burden,
Creation here must strengthen its Creator,
Mark well this wonder.

4. All sin which we and Adam have committed
The Lord most faultless would not have acquitted,
That burning anger which was our unmaking,
He here is taking.

5. Treacherous Judas runs without delaying,
For a vile payment now His Lord betraying,
Giving the secret sign upon their meeting:
False kiss of greeting.

6. Armed with their sticks and clubs, the foul abettors
To Caiaphas conducted Him in fetters,
There He receives in law's unsanctioned session
Harsh accusation.

7. Though in His mouth no lie was e'er detected,
Through lying witness His word is rejected;
Spitting with scorn, a crown of thorn they plait Him
To coronate Him.

8. With thickly braided scourges He is beaten
His back with gruesome welts is torn and eaten,
And from His head, all pierced with spines and slivers
Blood flows in rivers.

9. Blood-covered thus a spectacle they lead Him,
Violet robes in ridicule concede Him,
Mockingly hailing Him, they spit and beat Him,
Wish to defeat Him.

10. He was condemned, upon the cross they staked Him,
With vinegar and bitter gall they slaked Him
And when His spirit finally subsided,
Him they derided.

11. We must accuse ourselves, it was our failing;
Him on the tree of wood our hands were nailing,
Since from a tree did Adam by seduction
Work our destruction.

12. Oh! see our sin, the cause of His affliction,
We for our crimes requir'd His crucifixion;
Therefore should we, as long we as are living,
Ask His forgiving.

13. Lord Jesus, unto Thee our thanks is owing
For Thy Salvation, praise on Thee bestowing;
Though none can guess with human understanding
Thy due demanding.

14. Meanwhile receive what now my lips have chanted,
Till by the gate of angels I am granted
In glory exaltations that conceive Thee
Fully to give Thee.

15. Grant, Jesus, that, like Thee, I be commending
My spirit unto God when life is ending,
Grant, having blood and name with Thee in common,
Blessèd sleep! Amen.

Translation © 2008 Matthew Carver.

GERMAN
1. Kommt her und schaut, kommt, laßt uns doch von Herzen
Betrachten Christi Leiden, Pein und Schmerzen,
Er tritt die Kelter Gottes, wie ich meine,
Wohl recht alleine.

2. Ach seht, wie angst wird ihm von unsern Sünden,
Er muß sich wie ein Wurm am Ölberg winden,
Daß ihm der Todesschweiß, mit dem er ringet,
Blutig ausdringet.

3. Gott selbst fällt hier im Garten zu der Erden,
Ein Engel muß des Trösters Tröster werden,
Die Kreatur muß ihren Schöpfer stärken,
Welchs wohl zu merken.

4. Was wir und Adam hatten übertreten,
Das muß der unschuldigste Herr verbeten,
Den scharfen Zorn, der über uns ergrimmet,
Er hier vernimmet.

5. Der treulos Judas sorglich rennt und laufet,
Den Herren um ein schnödes Geld verkaufet,
Giebt drauf der Rott die Losung durch sein Grüßen
Und falsches Küssen.

6. Die da mit Spieß und Stangen fertig stunden,
Führten ihn mit vor Kai[a]phas gebunden,
Da er um seine Lehre wird gefraget
Und hart verklaget.

7. In dessen Mund auch kein Betrug gefunden,
Der wird durch falsches Zeugnis überwunden,
Er wird verspott, verspeiet und verhöhnet,
Mit Dorn gekrönet.

8. Er wird gepeitscht mit dicht geflochtnen Riemen,
Der Rücken lag blutrünstig voller Striemen,
Von seinem Haupt, mit Dornen wund gestoßen,
Blutstropfen flossen.

9. Blutig ward er zum Schauspiel umgeführet,
Mit einem Purpur nur zum Spott gezieret,
Höhnisch gegrüßt, man speit ihm ins Gesichte,
Daß ihn vernichte.

10. Er ward verurteilt und ans Kreuz gehenket,
Mit Essig und mit bittrer Gall getränket,
Zuletzt schon, als sein Geist sich von ihm machet,
Ward er verlachet.

11. Wir sollen nicht ihn, sondern uns beklagen.
Ach freilich wir, wir haben ihn geschlagen
Ans Holz, weil Adam von dem Baum den Schaden
Ihn aufgeladen.

12. Ach unsre Sünd, ist Ur[s]ach' seiner Wunden,
Wir haben ihn mit selbgen angebunden;
Wir hätten ewig, ewig, ewig müssen
Dies alles büßen.

13. Herr Jesu, dir, dir soll man Dank erweisen,
Für die Erlösung soll man stets dich preisen;
Doch kann es keines Menschen Witz ausdenken,
Was dir zu schenken.

14. Nimm dies so lang, was meine Lippen singen,
Bis du mich an der Engel Thor wirst bringen,
Daselbst will ich dein Lob in jenem Leben
Völlig erheben.

15. Hilf, Jesu, daß ich Gott auch meine Seele,
Wie du gethan, an meinem End befehle,
Daß ich mag selig auf dein Blut und Namen
Einschlafen. Amen.

4 comments:

Amberg said...

I like how you translated the first line of verse two to express the atonement better. Since this hymn is very Baroque the stress would seem to be important. I hope I'm not too bold to make a few suggestions to your excellent translation.

verse two
For "Oh! see, how OUR sins with such throes are thwarted,

See how our sins with agony are thwarted,
Oh, how our sins with throes of pain are thwarted

Here "angst" is replaced with "sins" which is the cause of the "angst" anyway.

If I may offer my little labor you inspired for discussion.

3. Here God himself falls in a garden lowly,
Angels descend to soothe our Savior holy
Creature lets not its Creator go under,
Behold this wonder.

3. Here to the earth falls God within the Garden
Where angels bear up Him who bears our burden,
Here must the creatures strengthen their creator,
Mark well the wonder.

NB: creator and wonder are close enough by rules I’ve observed. “t” and “d” are different only in vocalization; the nasal “n” may dropped from consideration due to its liquid value; the only problem is the the long “a”’s contrast with the short “u” of “wond-”. This problem has been somewhat resolved, I hope by alliterative compensation “well...wonder” which distracts a little from the slight dissonance the differing vowel stresses create.

I would love to read everything you’ve translated and work with you. Right now I have to go translate Propertius.

I’m thanking God right now that He made you and has given you such love for the Gospel as is evident both in your choice of song to translate and your translation of it.

Please let me know what you think,

Mark Preus

markpreus@gmail.com

Matt Carver (Matthaeus Glyptes) said...

Thanks Mark. You have some really good suggestions. Now I don't know--do I alter the original post, rendering the commentary obsolete in a way, or do I post changes as a comment?

Amberg said...

Why not the latter? What do you do, anyway?

Matt Carver (Matthaeus Glyptes) said...

Managed to keep your name in there! Ha ha.