I think of you

I think of you

You probably have heard of the name Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Mostly just the last part of his name, Goethe. He was a German writer and statesman. He is also known for the poems he wrote.

GoetheAbout the poet

Goethe was born on August 28, 1749, in the German city Frankfurt. He began writing around 1770. At the end of his life, he was famous in every part of Germany. That is no wonder since his legacy consists of many writings.

Goethe studied law at the University of Leipzig. His first writing was in 1770 when he anonymously published the first series of poems with the title Annette. This was around the time that he moved to the University of Strasbourg, to complete his study. Moving to the Alsace was a good thing to do. He was greatly inspired by the landscape and met Johann Godfried Herder. They became good friends and Herder was an important inspiration to start writing folk poetry (Volkspoesie). He also fell in love with Friederike Brion, but the relationship did not last long. He wrote several poems about this episode in his life.

After getting his degree in 1771, he opened a legal practice in Frankfurt. Moving to Italy, without notifying his loved one, writing and even a political career back in Germany. That was all part of the life of Goethe.

In 1832 Goethe died in Weimar. His last words: Mehr Licht! (More light!) There is still debate if this is the truth, since the doctor who treated Goethe might not have been in the room when he died.

I Think of You

I think of you
By Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I think of you,
when I see the sun’s shimmer
Gleaming from the sea.
I think of you,
when the moon’s glimmer
Is reflected in the springs.
I see you,
when on the distant road
The dust rises,
In deep night,
when on the narrow bridge
The traveler trembles.
I hear you,
when with a dull roar
The wave surges.
In the quiet grove I often go to listen
When all is silent.
I am with you,
however far away you may be,
You are next to me!
The sun is setting,
soon the stars will shine upon me.

The original version is in German:

Ich denke dein

Ich denke dein,
wenn mir der Sonne schimmer
Vom Meere strahlt;
Ich denke dein,
wenn sich des Mondes Flimmer
In Quellen malt.
Ich sehe dich,
wenn auf dem fernen Wege
Der Staub sich hebt,
In tiefer Nacht,
wenn auf dem schmalen Stege
Der Wandrer bebt.
Ich höre dich,
wenn dort mit dumpfem Rauschen
Die Welle steigt.
Im stillen Haine geh’ ich oft zu lauschen,
Wenn alles schweigt.
Ich bin bei dir,
du seist auch noch so ferne,
Du bist mir nah!
Die Sonne sinkt,
bald leuchten mir die Sterne.
O wärst du da!

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