Schenken - (2011)    

Joachim Ringelnatz

for mezzo soprano and piano

Elisabeth Umierski und Dieter Zahn gewidmet

Schenke groƟ oder klein,
Aber immer gediegen.
Wenn die Bedachten
Die Gaben wiegen,
Sei dein Gewissen rein.

Schenke herzlich und frei.
Schenke dabei
Was in dir wohnt
An Meinung, Geschmack und Humor,
So dass die eigene Freude zuvor
Dich reichlich belohnt.

Schenke mit Geist ohne List.
Sei eingedenk,
Dass dein Geschenk
Du selber bist.

2 pages, circa 1' 45"

Joachim Ringelnatz


The text is a part of the collection titled Allerdings from 1928. Because of the non-harmonized copyright rules between Europe and the US, this is public domain in Europe while this song may not be performed in the United States without seeking permission from the relevant authorities.


Give big or small,
but always well thought out.
When the recipient
considers the gift,
Your concern is clear.

Give warmly and freely.
Give of that
which lives in your
views, taste and humor,
so that from their own joy
you are richly rewarded.

Give with spirit, without cunning.
Be mindful
that in your gift
you yourself are found.



The seeming C major of the setting is immediately broken by the raised fourth, but this is also not a Lydian, but rather a setting harmonically decorated by cross-relations including the normal fourth of the major scale found in the accompaniment as by some dense triadic polytonality -- for the fun of it all. The 3/8 meter mimics the look of some Baroque scores and the short range of the vocal line makes it appropriate for a number of voice types.



The score is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this piano-vocal score.