The Game Is Over (Das Spiel Ist Aus) by Ingeborg Bachmann
My dear brother, when will we build a raft?
to float down the sky on??
My dear brother, soon our load will be so heavy?
that we’ll sink.
My dear brother, onto paper?
we’ll draw many countries and tracks.?
Watch out for the black lines?
or you’ll fly sky high with the land mines.
My dear brother, i want to be tied to a stake
Already you ride out of death valley
?and together we will flee.
On guard in the gypsy camp, on guard in the desert camp,
?the sand streams from our hair,
?your age and my age and the age of the world
?cannot be measured in years.
Don’t be deceived by cunning ravens, sticky spider’s hands
?and a feather in the bush,?
don’t eat and drink in a fool’s paradise,?
illusion gleams in pans and mugs.
Only he who by the golden bridge?
still remembers the name for the?Karfunkel fairy has won.?
i must tell you that it melted after the last snow in the garden.
Many, many stones have made our feet so sore.
?One can heal. We will use it to jump with,?
until the children’s king, with the key to his kingdom
?in his mouth comes for us and then we will sing:
it‘s a beautiful moment when the date pit sprouts!
?Each one that falls has wings.?
Red foxglove fringes the shroud of the poor?
and your parnassia sinks onto my seal.
We must go to sleep, darling, the game is over.
?On tip-toe. The white shirts swell.?
Father and mother say there are ghosts in the house?
when we exchange breath.