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Black milk of daybreak we drink it come evening

we drink it come midday come morning we drink it come night

we drink it and drink it

we spade out a grave in the air there it won't feel so tight

A man lives at home who plays with the vipers he writes

he writes in the German-born nightfall

the gold of your hair Margarete

he writes it and steps out of doors and the stars are aglitter he whistles his hounds out

he whistles his Jews off has them spade out a grave in the ground

he orders us play up for the dance

 

Black milk of daybreak we drink you come night

we drink you come midday come morning we drink you come evening

we drink you and drink you

A man lives at home who plays with the vipers he writes

he writes in the German-born nightfall the gold of your hair Margarete

the ash of your hair Shulamith we spade out a grave in the air there it won't feel so tight

 

He yells you there dig deeper and you there sing and play

He grabs the nightstick at his belt and swings it his eyes are so blue

You there dig deeper and you there play loud for the dance

 

Black milk of daybreak we drink you come night

We drink you come midday come morning we drink you come evening

We drink you and drink you

a man lives at home the gold of your hair Margarete

the ash of your hair Shulamith he plays with the vipers

he yells play sweeter for death Death is a German-born master

yells scrape the strings darker you'll rise through the air like smoke

and have a grave in the clouds there it won't feel so tight

 

Black milk of daybreak we drink you come night

we drink you come midday Death is a German-born master

We drink you come evening come morning we drink you and drink you

Death is a German-born master his eye is so blue

He shoots with lead bullets he shoots you his aim is so true

a man lives at home the gold of your hair Margarete

he lets his hounds loose on us grants us a grave in the air

he plays with his vipers and dreams a dream Death is a German-born master

 

The gold of your hair Margarete

The ash of your hair Shulamith

(1945)

Death Fugue by Paul Celan

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