Stadt Land Fluss

Anna Depenbusch



Now I'm here, then I'm there:
My suitcase always packed to go,
So nothing holds me anywhere,
And there is nowhere I'm at home.
I need the rails beneath my feet,
The gentle rattle of the doors.
Solid ground no longer helps me;
My life keeps rolling like a train.

Stadt Land Fluss:
To there and back,
From inside to outside
And then inside out.
Stadt Land Fluss:
To there and back;
The world's a blur
Till I know where I am.

Every mile makes it easy
Both to forget and to forgive.
All the old ways I've abandoned;
There's no more baggage--I'm alone.
People say that you need a goal:
Trust yourself and your gut feeling.
But what if there is nothing there
Because your only goal is you.
It comes and goes just as it wants to;
Only in motion is it still.

Stadt Land Fluss:
To there and back,
From inside to outside
And then inside out.
Stadt Land Fluss:
To there and back;
The world's a blur
Till I know where I am.

Between Hamburg and Berlin,
Between Munich and Schwerin,
Between Bremen, Cologne and Stuttgart,
Between Freiburg, Mainz and Puttgarden,
Between Oder, Elbe, Rhine,
Somewhere there I'll be right now.

Shadows flicker on the curtains;
Leaves fly by but stay in place.
Walls of houses, lines of traffic;
Joni Mitchell paints the landscape blue.
Mirrored pictures in the windows;
I let the thoughts rise upwards like a kite.
That is goodbye, but in my own fashion.
In your travels, remember me.

Stadt Land Fluss:
To there and back,
From inside to outside
And then inside out.
Stadt Land Fluss:
To there and back;
The world's a blur
Till I know where I am.

Words and music by Anna Depenbusch
Translated by Frank Beck

One of my favorite songs from Anna Depenbusch's new album, Das Alphabet der Anna Depenbusch. She's a songwriter with the knack of presenting life's contradictions, without trying to smooth them out.

The phrase 'Stadt Land Fluss' refers to a popular German game, often played in a car, in which one person names a letter of the alphabet and players compete to see how many cities, countries and rivers starting with that letter they can name in a specified amount of time. As such, it's untranslatable. See the first link below for a live performance of the song from Darmstadt in April 2017.


Anna Depenbusch in concert--Darmstadt, April 2017 (Photo: Thomas Bieg)

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