Recording: Jessye Norman, soprano (Nos. 1, 6); Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, baritone; Daniel Barenboim, piano [DG 449 633-2]
Published 1882.

This excellent set, containing some of Brahms’s greatest songs, is the first of three composed “for low voice.”  This simply means that the original keys are lower.  Versions in higher keys exist, as do low-key versions for most of the other sets.  The three “low voice” sets do have a certain “weight.”  Unlike the preceding Op. 85, this group contains no folk or folk-like settings or translations.  All are true art song settings of contemporary German poets.  The set encapsulates many of the typical features seen in songs from the “high mautrity,” Brahms’s third period, of which these songs are among the last compositions.  No. 1 is a masterful miniature with much subtlety and a sensitive treatment of the obscure text.  No. 2, “Feldeinsamkeit,” is sometimes labeled as his greatest song, or at least among the greatest.  Its evocative beauty may not have been appreciated by the poet Allmers (whom Brahms sent a carefully prepared copy) but his friend Elisabeth von Herzogenberg said of the final phrase in each verse that “it tears at my very heartstrings.”  The third song creates an almost otherworldly combination of suspended anticipation and inexorable motion.  The terse, rather grim No. 4 is the composer’s only setting of the great poet Theodor Storm.  Brahms returned once more to the lyrics of Felix Schumann, the last son of Robert and Clara, in No. 5 (see also Op. 63, Nos. 5 and 6).  It was written about a year before the young poet, his godson, died at 24 of tuberculosis in 1879.  While it is one of his most buoyant songs, there are slight hints of tragedy in the many dissonances.  No. 6 is a large, wide-ranging, sectional song.  Brahms typically placed such extended settings at the ends of sets (see also, for example, Op. 70).  The song changes meter for the last two stanzas, and moves from minor to major.  The diversity within the song, along with its slow tempo, might invite diffuseness and disunity (a criticism often leveled at Op. 70, No. 4), but “Todessehnen” is an extremely moving and affecting song that makes the words of the poet sound sincere and transfigured rather than self-centered and indulgent.  The climaxes are well-placed and fulfilling.  The prayer-like slow triple meter that ends the song balances perfectly the tragic dirge with which it begins, and the transition between the two is very smooth.  All six songs have rather nebulous forms that are not clear-cut.

Note: Links to English translations of the texts are from Emily Ezust’s site at  For the most part, the translations are line-by-line, except where the difference between German and English syntax requires slight alterations to the contents of certain lines.  The German texts (included here) are also visible in the translation links.

ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP (First Edition from Brahms-Institut Lübeck--original keys)
ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP (From Breitkopf & Härtel Sämtliche Werke--original keys)
ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP (Edition Peters, edited by Max Friedländer):
No. 1: Therese (in original key, D major)
No. 1: Therese (in high key, F major)
No. 1: Therese (in middle key, E major)
No. 2: Feldeinsamkeit (in original key, F major)
No. 2: Feldeinsamkeit (in high key, A-flat major)
No. 2: Feldeinsamkeit (in middle key, G major)
No. 3: Nachtwandler (in original [middle] key, C major)
No. 3: Nachtwandler (in high key, D major)
No. 3: Nachtwandler (in low key, B-flat major)
No. 4: Über die Heide (in original key, G minor)
No. 4: Über die Heide (in high key, A minor)
No. 5: Versunken (in original key, F-sharp major)
No. 5: Versunken (in high key, A major)
No. 6: Todessehnen (in original key, F-sharp minor/major)
No. 6: Todessehnen (in high key, A minor/major)

1. Therese (Therese).  Text by Gottfried Keller.  Etwas bewegt (With some motion).  Strophic/Through-composed combination (AA’B).  D MAJOR, 3/4 time (High key F major, middle key E major).

German Text:
Du milchjunger Knabe, wie schaust du mich an?
Was haben deine Augen für eine Frage getan!
Alle Ratsherrn in der Stadt und alle Weisen der Welt
Bleiben stumm auf die Frage, die deine Augen gestellt!
Eine Meermuschel liegt auf dem Schrank meiner Bas’:
Da halte dein Ohr d’ran, dann hörst du etwas!

English Translation

0:00 [m. 1]--Introduction.  An animated melody with an inner voice in triplet rhythm.  The melody moves downward.  The last two notes are stated three times, and the preceding note is higher each time.  The first statement has unstable harmony, the second has a clear half-close, and the last lengthens out the half-close over a slowing, creating more anticipation.  The bass notes are in octaves.
0:11 [m. 6]--Lines 1-2 (A).  The vocal melody is simple, with many repeated notes.  Brahms had considered a more complex melody with leaps but decided against it.  The accompaniment is also in simple chords.  At the mention of the mysterious question at the end of line 2, the harmony makes a surprising turn to the related B minor.  The short minor-key bridge has slower chords that obscure the main triple meter.
0:26 [m. 16]--Lines 3-4 (A’).  The music is the same as in the first two lines, but the inner voice of the chords becomes more active, creating a flowing line.  Also, the greater number of syllables necessitates the splitting of some longer notes into two repeated notes, giving the whole passage an illusion of being “faster.”  The turn to minor is retained, and the flowing inner voice continues in the short bridge.
0:43 [m. 26]--Line 5 (B).  Brahms makes a very surprising turn.  The B minor of the bridge turns not back to D major, but to its major parallel (B major).  The music slows slightly.  The melody is wider, with a prominent downward octave leap at the beginning, and is similar to the alternative Brahms considered for the first melody.  The gesture at the end of the line is repeated.  The accompaniment is a return of the introduction melody in chords.  The bass notes play on the weak half-beats at first, then the melody itself shifts to syncopated after-beats.
0:52 [m. 30]--Line 6 (B continued).  A sudden and striking shift to the home key of D major.  The syncopated chords become static after the previous introduction melody in the accompaniment is completed.  The first half of the line is sung to a repeated “D.”  The static chords move up in pitch before the second half.  The last part of the line echoes the beginning of line 5, with the downward octave leap.  Under this, the piano plays the introduction melody again, completely in the established syncopation.  The ending of the vocal line is somewhat questioning, and finishes before the introduction melody.  After the melody is completed, more static syncopated chords gradually descend, slow, and calm down at the close.
1:27--END OF SONG [39 mm.]

2. Feldeinsamkeit (Field Solitude).  Text by Hermann Allmers.  Langsam (Slowly).  Modified strophic form (the outer lines of each strophe are the same, the middle ones varied).  F MAJOR, 4/4 time (High key A-flat major, middle key G major).

German Text:
Ich ruhe still im hohen grünen Gras
Und sende lange meinen Blick nach oben,
Von Grillen rings umschwirrt ohn Unterlaß,
Von Himmelsbläue wundersam umwoben.

Die schönen weißen Wolken ziehn dahin
Durchs tiefe Blau, wie schöne stille Träume;
Mir ist, als ob ich längst gestorben bin
Und ziehe selig mit durch ew’ge Räume.

English Translation
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1, line 1.  An upbeat establishes a low, steady bass that holds to the keynote, F.  Against this, chords of F major slowly rise.  The voice enters with two simple but beautiful rising broken-chord lines to which the first poetic line is sung.  The piano right hand begins to play high chords over a steadily moving middle voice with two-note slurs.  The constant low bass F continues.
0:24 [m. 5]--Line 2.  The vocal line now moves in both directions and becomes slightly more active.  Under the high note on the word “Blick,” the bass starts to slide up by half-step.  The piano continues its pattern of chords with a steady middle voice in two-note slurs.  The last words, “nach oben,” are sung twice.  Each statement of “oben” is set to a long, slow descending leap.  These descending leaps move decisively to C major, reflected in the new location of the bass.  There is a one-bar bridge before the next line.
0:53 [m. 10]--Line 3.  A very stark motion to the home minor key (F minor) for two descending broken-chord lines (moving by third, or skip), the second reaching lower, with the last jump widened to a fourth.  The active middle voice continues as it moves into the lower register.  The low repeated bass note is now C.
1:03 [m. 12]--Line 4.  A magical and natural shift to major ushers in one of the most beautiful melodic lines in Brahms’s art songs.  It has several chromatic (non-scale) notes and moves very slowly, but its steady buildup of tension makes the cadence particularly fulfilling.  The poetic line is sung twice, the first over a similar accompaniment pattern that twice passes the active middle voice to the bass and back.  Halfway through the second statement, the piano abandons the pattern for slower bass notes and short responses.  The voice draws out the last word over an exquisitely slow turn figure.  At the cadence, the opening bars with rising F-major chords are reprised as an interlude between strophes.
1:42 [m. 19]--Stanza (strophe) 2, line 1.  It is sung to the same music as in strophe 1 [beginning with m. 3] after the introductory bars (which were just reprised at the cadence of strophe 1), with low pedal F’s.
1:52 [m. 21]--Line 2.  A subtle alteration slides this line and its harmony up a half-step, lingering on D-flat major.  The bass line again slides by half-step, but this time moves three notes higher than in strophe 1.  There is also more text repetition, as the entire second half of the line (“wie schöne stille Träume”) is repeated.  This extends the line by a bar and allows Brahms to move the harmony back to C major, analogous to the same point in strophe 1, and using the same long descending leap (but only one of them).  The top voice moves with the middle voice in the repetition.  The bridge to line 3 is abbreviated a half-bar.
2:24 [m. 26]--Line 3.  It is very similar to the line in strophe 1, with four important differences: (1) It begins a half-bar earlier, helping to “make up” for the extra bar in line 2. (2) The second descending broken-chord line begins a third lower, and the last jump is narrowed to another third instead of a fourth, ending on a dissonant note suggesting C minor instead of F minor. (3) The accompaniment pattern is broken.  Stark, bare octaves staggered between the hands double the notes of the vocal line. (4) The time before the entry of line 4 is doubled to allow the harmony to adjust from the dissonance and to line the meter back up.  This line is the crux and turning point of the song.
2:41 [m. 29]--Line 4.  It is sung to the same music as in strophe 1 at 1:03 [m. 12].  The opening bars with the rising F-major chords and the low pedal F are again reprised at the cadence as a postlude.  The entire song is very quiet, with only the briefest swelling before the extended cadence of each strophe.
3:42--END OF SONG [35 mm.]

3. Nachtwandler (Sleepwalker or Night Wanderer).  Text by Max Kalbeck.  Langsam (Slowly).  Modified strophic form (AAB).  C MAJOR, 3/4 time (High key D major, low key B-flat major).

German Text:
Störe nicht den leisen Schlummer
Dess, den lind ein Traum umfangen!
Laß ihm seinen süßen Kummer!
Ihm sein schmerzliches Verlangen!

Sorgen und Gefahren drohen,
Aber keine wird ihm schrecken,
Kommst du nicht, den Schlafesfrohen
Durch ein hartes Wort zu wecken.

Still in seinen Traum versunken,
Geht er über Abgrundtiefen,
Wie vom Licht des Vollmonds trunken,
Weh’ den Lippen, die ihn riefen!

English Translation

0:00 [m. 1]--Introduction.  The richly harmonized introduction, with a free mixture of the major and minor chords, establishes several elements of the song, such as a rhythm of three short notes following a long one, the active, meandering bass line, and the descending scale supported by chords at the end.
0:17 [m. 7]--Stanza 1 (A), lines 1-2.  The vocal line begins rather high and largely remains there.  There is an element of secretiveness.  The right hand plays syncopated chords after the beats.  The bass line is especially noteworthy, moving freely between doubling the voice, harmonizing it in parallel motion, or providing a solid foundation.  The main vocal rhythms are the one presented in the introduction as well as one long note followed by another one half as long.
0:38 [m. 15]--Stanza 1, lines 3-4.  Line 3 is more urgent, beginning somewhat lower and striving upward in the rhythm of the introduction.  The syncopated right hand chords are especially dynamic.  Line 4 becomes quieter and slower.  Its text and music, except for the first note and word, are repeated, connected to the first statement by a chromatic half-step slide.  The strophe ends with a pleading and gentle, yet imperative half-close.  More syncopated chords lead to the repeated introduction and strophe.
1:11 [m. 25 (1)]--Repetition of the introduction, with a slight alteration to the first bar as it emerges from the preceding strophe.
1:26 [m. 7]--Stanza 2 (A), lines 1-2.  Music as at 0:17, with no change of declamation for the new text.
1:47 [m. 15]--Stanza 2, lines 3-4.  Music as at 0:38, including the repetition of line 4 without the first word.
2:19 [m. 25]--Stanza 3 (B), lines 1-2.  The piano begins the introduction again, but the voice enters against it, almost as an echo.  The music is very soft and quiet here.  As the piano’s introduction music reaches the closing descending scale, the voice takes over, singing this gesture for the first time on line 2.  There are two repetitions of the former piano gesture and two more a step higher.  The piano itself abandons the introduction, playing very low bass notes and syncopations after the main beats, while the right hand plays slow chords.
2:44 [m. 33]--Stanza 3, line 3.  This line is sung very broadly.  It is repeated to largely the same rhythm on a higher-striving melodic line.  The piano continues the low bass notes and syncopations in the left hand, but the right hand plays increasingly urgent low harmonies, arching slowly up and down.  There is a very gradual crescendo or swell in volume over the two statements of the line.
3:05 [m. 41]--Stanza 3, line 4.  The piano suddenly returns to familiar material, the accompaniment for the last line of the first two verses.  The vocal line, however, is different, reaching higher on the first statement and beginning a beat later.  Unlike the first two verses, the repetition of the line is not set to the same vocal line as the first.  It moves downward, inserting a mild syncopation on “Lippen” before coming to the same half-close gesture as before.  The piano part is the same as the first two verses throughout both statements.  Although the line slows and becomes quieter (as before), it begins with an accented climactic chord.
3:29 [m. 47]--Repetition of the introduction as postlude.  The final bar is stretched out, and a quiet final rolled chord is added.  This firm close on a C-major chord compensates somewhat for the last vocal cadence, which was imperative and inconclusive in all three verses.
4:07--END OF SONG [53 mm.]

4. Über die Heide (Over the Heath).  Text by Theodor Storm.  Ziemlich langsam, gehend (Somewhat slowly, but moving).  Andante moderato.  Modified strophic form (AABA’).  G MINOR, 6/8 time, with one bar of 9/8 near the end (High key A minor).

German Text:
Über die Heide hallet mein Schritt;
Dumpf aus der Erde wandert es mit.

Herbst ist gekommen, Frühling ist weit, -
Gab es denn einmal selige Zeit?

Brauende Nebel geisten umher,
Schwarz ist das Kraut und der Himmel so leer.

Wär’ ich nur hier nicht gegangen im Mai!
Leben und Liebe - wie flog es vorbei!

English Translation

0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza 1 (A).  The piano establishes the basic motif.  Three detached rising bass octaves, then a leaping descent, all punctuated by low right hand chords after the beat.  The voice enters after the piano with an arching, mostly scalar line, the only large leap being halfway through the first line.  The most active parts of the vocal line alternate with the piano’s patterns.  In line 2, the piano breaks from the pattern briefly, and echoes a very plaintive descending figure at the cadence that was first heard in the voice.  One more statement of the piano pattern leads to the second stanza.
0:15 [m. 6]--Stanza 2 (A).  The vocal line is the same as in stanza 1, but the piano has a very subtle alteration.  The left hand is identical, but the after-beat chords of the right hand are shifted by a half-bar so that they sound with the active parts of the vocal line instead of alternating with them.  They include doubling, harmonization, and inversion of the voice part.  At the point where the piano breaks from the patterns, it returns to as it was in stanza 1, with the plaintive echo of the descending figure.
0:30 [m. 11]--Stanza 3 (B).  The left hand retains its obsessive pattern of three detached rising octaves with a leaping descent throughout.  The right hand after-beat syncopated chords become constant now, and are held out rather than detached.  The vocal line swells steadily on a very gradual ascent with many repeated notes and the most active harmonies of the song.  A climax is reached, and the second line of the stanza is repeated at the high point, quickly diminishing as it reverses direction in an almost tragic descent reflective of the metaphoric desolation described in this line of the poem.
0:53 [m. 19]--The piano has a two-bar bridge to re-establish the mood of the first two verses.  There is a dramatic half-bar pause.
1:00 [m. 21]--Stanza 4 (A’).  For the last stanza, the right hand after-beat chords now play throughout the bar with no interruption, effectively combining the patterns used in stanza 1 and stanza 1.  Line 1 is slightly more active, inserting a dotted rhythm for the extra syllable.  The left hand is the same until the point where the patterns break.  Here, Brahms lengthens the last line on the word “Liebe,” necessitating the insertion of a 9/8 bar (m. 24).  The plaintive descending figure is also lengthened and filled out, continuing to echo the voice.  Now one, instead of two statements of the pattern close the stanza and the song, along with a final syncopated after-beat chord.
1:33--END OF SONG [27 mm.]

5. Versunken (Drowned or Enraptured).  Text by Felix Schumann.  Sehr leidenschaftlich, doch nicht zu rasch (Very passionate, but not too hurried).  Varied strophic form (ABB’A).  F-SHARP MAJOR, 6/8 time (High key A major).

German Text:
Es brausen der Liebe Wogen
Und schäumen mir um das Herz;
Zwei tiefe Augen zogen
Mich mächtig niederwärts.

Mich lockte der Nixen Gemunkel,
Die wunderliebliche Mär,
Als ob die Erde dunkel
Und leuchtend die Tiefe wär’!

Als würde die seligste Ferne
Dort unten reizende Näh’,
Als könnt’ ich des Himmels Sterne
Dort greifen in blauer See.

Nun brausen und schäumen die Wogen
Und hüllen mich allwärts ein,
Es schimmert in Regenbogen
Die Welt von ferne herein.

English Translation

0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza 1 (A).  Two attention-grabbing, syncopated chords with anticipatory bass octaves begin the song.  The first verse is set to a wide-ranging melody with an exuberant swing.  The accompaniment consists largely of sweeping arpeggios.  The vocal line itself does contain isolated minor-key tinges and dissonant leaps that undermine its joyousness.  The first two lines are set to breathless two-bar phrases, the second of which has a strong echo in the piano bass.  The third and fourth lines are combined in a longer five-bar phrase that contains hints of cross-rhythms in the piano.  Note the lengthening of the word “tiefe” with its prominent dissonant upward leap and the word painting with the descent on “niederwärts” (“downward“).  A small bridge with upward rolled chords leads to stanza 2.
0:21 [m. 13]--Stanza 2 (B), lines 1-2.  The stanza begins in the related key of D-sharp minor and at a much softer level.  The vocal line is much narrower, arching down by steps and harmonized in thirds by the piano right hand.  The left hand takes the arpeggios by itself.  Line 2 is a more drawn out descent, but the piano echoes the rhythm of line 1 under it.
0:28 [m. 18]--Stanza 2, lines 3-4.  There are two statements of these lines that move to other related keys.  The piano now plays a series of rising arpeggios beginning off the beat after a bass note.  In the first statement, line 3 is very quiet and secretive, and it is doubled in the low bass.  Line 4 is a suddenly boisterous response with a strong brightening as it moves to C-sharp major.  The second statement retains the sudden strength.  Line 3 is similar to its first statement, but it is a step higher and the low bass anticipates, rather than doubles it.  The second statement of line 4 is more hesitant and makes an equally striking key change, this time to B major.  There is a brief piano bridge that again changes key.
0:48 [m. 30]--Stanza 3, lines 1-2 (B’).  The first two lines are similar to those in stanza 2, but are in D-sharp major (notated as E-flat major) rather than minor.  Line 1 arches upward instead of downward, still harmonized in thirds by the piano.  Line 2 is also similar, but it begins higher and has a wider descent.  The piano echoes the rhythm of line 1, as in stanza 2.  The small bridge to line 3 is the same as in stanza 2.
0:58 [m. 35]--Stanza 3, lines 3-4.  These lines are set as in stanza 2, including their repetition.  The extra syllable in line 3 requires Brahms to insert a new dotted rhythm on a repeated note.  There is one small difference in the repetition of line 4, where the piano arpeggios now begin on the beat instead of off of it.  The last vocal notes are also slightly different, ending with an upward leap instead of a stepwise descent.  That leap is to the note F-sharp, the keynote of the song.  The piano bridge, which introduces cross-rhythms, moves to that key from B major, as if anticipated by the vocal note.
1:17 [m. 47]--Stanza 4 (A).  Musically the same as stanza 1, with slight declamation differences to account for extra syllables in lines 1, 3, and 4.
1:30 [m. 55]--At the cadence of stanza 4, the piano plays a very long arching arpeggio in octaves with the right hand echoing the left after the beats.  This arpeggio swells in volume, then quiets rapidly on the descent, along with slowing down to an unexpectedly subdued ending.  This ending has slower notes and ambiguous borrowings of a pitch (D-natural) from the minor key.
1:48--END OF SONG [59 mm.]

6. Todessehnen (Yearning for Death).  Text by Max Gottfried von Schenkendorf.  Langsam (Slowly).  Large multi-sectional through-composed form, with some correspondences between the first two and the last two stanzas (AA’BCC’).  F-SHARP MINOR/MAJOR, 4/4--3/4 time, with an insertion of one 2/4 bar in the 4/4 section (High key A minor/major).

German Text:
Ach, wer nimmt von meiner Seele
Die geheime, schwere Last,
Die, je mehr ich sie verhehle,
Immer mächtiger mich faßt?

Möchtest du nur endlich brechen,
Mein gequältes, banges Herz!
Findest hier mit deinen Schwächen,
Deiner Liebe, nichts als Schmerz.

Dort nur wirst du ganz genesen,
Wo der Sehnsucht nichts mehr fehlt,
Wo das schwesterliche Wesen
Deinem Wesen sich vermählt.

Hör’ es, Vater in der Höhe,
Aus der Fremde fleht dein Kind:
Gib’, daß er mich bald umwehe,
Deines Todes Lebenswind.

Daß er zu dem Stern mich hebe,
Wo man keine Trennung kennt,
Wo die Geistersprache Leben
Mit der Liebe Namen nennt.

English Translation

FIRST SECTION--Langsam, F-sharp minor, 4/4
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza 1 (A), lines 1-2.  With no introduction, the voice and piano enter together.  The music has the character of a tragic lament.  The vocal line moves slowly and narrowly, dipping down to a dissonance before the cadence, which makes a hopeful turn to major.  This is undermined by the piano, which has many dissonant harmonies.  The bass line, which consists of groups of three octaves entering off the beat and moving mostly stepwise, also creates dissonance and unsettlement.
0:18 [m. 5]--Lines 3-4.  The music swells and becomes more urgent.  The vocal part moves steadily upward and the piano bass is more fully harmonized and less hesitant.  Upward-leaping syncopations in the voice propel things forward.  The beginning of line 4 is a minor climax.  The line is repeated on another prominent syncopation in an inserted 2/4 bar that disrupts the metric flow.  The repetition settles and slows as the voice descends in a brief motion to and pause on the “dominant” chord of C-sharp.  An immediate motion to a sustained dissonance in the bass is highly unsettling, although it does resolve.
0:48 [m. 11]--Stanza 2 (A’), lines 1-2.  Musically identical to the first two lines of stanza 1.
1:07 [m. 15]--Lines 3-4.  The passage diverges from stanza 1.  The rising vocal line is more chromatic, moving by half-steps in line 3.  The piano bass octaves arch downward.  Line 4 makes a strong motion to the “relative” major key, A.  A descending syncopated leap on “Liebe” and the subsequent chromatic descent are prominent.  That descent continues in a repetition of the words “nichts als Schmerz.”  Again, there is a swelling and receding over the two lines.  Another dissonant off-beat bass note disrupts the half-close, which slows strongly and introduces more syncopations in the low bass.
1:37 [m. 21]--A brief interlude has descending thirds in the left hand and syncopated repeated notes (D’s) in the right.  The first three-beat descent is more dissonant than the second, which settles into the next section.
SECOND SECTION--Etwas bewegter (with somewhat more motion), A major, 4/4
1:44 [m. 23]--Stanza 3 (B).  This stanza has the character of a transition.  In the most animated section of the song, the first glimpse of the hope for transfiguration is offered.  It begins on the second half of m. 22 as an extended upbeat.  The vocal line flows steadily throughout the verse, but there are some slightly dissonant chromatic notes.  The piano plays a consistent pattern of syncopated right hand chords against a more steady bass.  The last two lines move back toward F-sharp, with slower notes and a slight quieting.
THIRD SECTION--Langsam, F-sharp major, 3/4
2:12 [m. 31]--The cadence of the last stanza coincides with an arrival on F-sharp major, not minor and a change of meter, to a very slow triple time.  An interlude introduces a figure that will be prominent through most of the last section, a rising arpeggio with a syncopated note held over the third beat.  The harmonies move very slowly in this quiet preparation for the following prayer.
2:26 [m. 36]--Stanza 4 (C), lines 1-2.  The voice begins the prayerful words unaccompanied.  The melody moves very slowly and deliberately.  After the vocal entrance, the piano again begins the rising arpeggio heard in the interlude.  This continues throughout the stanza, changing with the harmonies.  In the second line, the voice has two very gentle but wide leaps down and back up in dotted (long-short) rhythm.
2:45 [m. 44]--Lines 3-4.  Line 3 is set to a widely descending line that suddenly moves to an unexpected D major.  Line 4, however, rises dramatically over a gradual crescendo.  The line has a very bright and striking motion to C-sharp, back toward the home key.  The arrival on the chord of C-sharp at the end of the stanza is almost ecstatic.  The piano figures continue from before.
3:02 [m. 52]--An piano interlude echoes the preceding bright arrival, still retaining the rhythm of the accompaniment figure (with notes held over into the third beat of each bar).  The accompaniment figure itself leads back into the next verse, as the interlude from 2:12 [m. 31] had done.  It also settles back down into prayerful devotion.
3:12 [m. 56]--Stanza 5 (C’), lines 1-2.  Musically identical to the first two lines of stanza 4.
3:30 [m. 64]--Lines 3-4.  The vocal part on line 3 is the same as in stanza 4, but the piano part is altered.  The held notes into the third beats are eliminated, and the notes, in groups of 3, are continuous throughout.  Line 4 is different, remaining in D major and eliminating the striking harmonic motion, delaying the arrival point and increasing the tension.  The new accompaniment propels the music forward.
3:49 [m. 73]--Line 4 is repeated and stretched out, incorporating the previous striking motion from stanza 4, but now it is to F-sharp instead of C-sharp.  The word “Liebe” is stretched out over three notes, creating a “hemiola” as the second note is held across the bar line, implying a longer 3/2 bar on top of two 3/4 bars.  The accompaniment figures are briefly grouped in sets of four notes under the word to emphasize this cross-rhythm.  They return to groups of three under the word “Namen,” which is very drawn out.  There is a continuous crescendo through the repetition.
4:01 [m. 79]--The final vocal cadence is the high point.  It does not recede before leading into a piano postlude that retains the groups of three in piano right hand.  Now the music finally diminishes.  An inner melody in the tenor range is in slower notes.  It is echoed an octave lower.  There are three final chords, the first two with bass anticipations and the last one rolled slowly over a wide range.
4:34--END OF SONG [85 mm.]