Caught up in the whole war, I felt a pull towards home, And though I was excited, I fought very businesslike. But he hurried, and somehow once he didnít jump, And wrapped up in the tug-of-war, for two years a whole lot of nothing. No more did I hear his pulse in the spring of í43, So, I slipped into my pre-war dreams, And I may look like a fool, but I breath heavily. He was better, nicer, but I was lucky. I didnít live behind the dug-out, didnít drink tea with the chief, I didnít ask to go to the rear, nor sought destiny beneath a hem-line, Though women silently hinted to me when me met: If you could remain forever, perhaps mine would come back. For me their sad question isnít a riddle, Obviously I donít rejoice that the others didnít make it. I came up with this answer: "Pardon me that Iím still in one piece, I made it back accidentally, I returned, but he didnít know how." In parting he screamed from the burning aircraft: "Live, youíll pull through", - reached me through the rumble. We flew under God, right up there by paradise, He flew a bit higher and landed there, while I reached for the earth. The heavenly aerodrome met the pilot, He lay on his belly, but he didnít crawl on it, He fell asleep and didnít wake up, he began to sing but didnít finish, So I came back, I returned, but he didnít know how. Iím forever guilty in front of the ones Whom Iíd consider it an honor to meet today. But nonetheless we the living flew to the end, Our memory burns and our consciences torment, those of us who have one. Someone sparingly and clearly counted out the hours In our lives, short like a strip of concrete. And on it, some crashed, some flew off forever. But I landed, but I landed, now thatís the misfortune.
© Peter Struwwel. Translation, ?