Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder explores a more unusual theme. It warns the listener not to be too inquisitive about the process of creation, and suggests that the poet does not trust himself to inquire too much: only the finished work counts, not how it was achieved. The analogy made with the work of bees in the second stanza provides Mahler with the basis for his musical imagery. A brief introduction establishes a kind of perpetuum mobile with a subtle buzzing produced by an orchestra of muted strings, without double bass, single woodwinds and a horn, together with a harp. The two stanzas are variants of one another, but the first has an extra line, which repeats the text of the opening. In this repetition Mahler preserves the rhythm and some of the melodic features of his first vocal phrase, but shifts it to a different level and concludes with an upward rather than downward movement.

Score Lied Ruckert 1: Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder.

“Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder” (Look not into my songs) warns the listener not to be too inquisitive about the process of artistic creativity since only the finished work matters. The analogy made with the work of bees in the second stanza provides Mahler with the basis for his musical tone painting. A brief introduction establishes a perpetual motion with a subtle buzzing produced by muted strings without double bass, single woodwinds and a horn.

 

Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder

 

Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder!

Meine Augen schlag’ ich nieder,

Wie ertappt auf boeser Tat.

Selber darf ich nicht getrauen,

Ihrem Wachsen zuzuschauen.

Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder!

Deine Neugier ist Verrat!

 

Bienen, wenn sie Zellen bauen,

Lassen auch nicht zu sich schauen,

Schauen selbst auch nicht zu.

Wenn die reichen Honigwaben

Sie zu Tag gefoerdert haben,

Dann vor allen nasche du!

 

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