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Ich atmet’ einen linden Duft is perhaps unique in musically evoking a fragrance, the delicate fragrance of the lime tree with which the poet associates his love. The color of the setting is still more transparent, and much brighter than “Blicke mir nicht.” The orchestration again consists of single winds, horn and harp, but only violins and violas are called for, and a celesta has been added. The continuing even motion in the strings suggests the quiet wafting of the scent through the air.

Score Lied Ruckert 2: Ich atmet' einen linden Duft!

The settings of the two stanzas share material, but are no longer overtly strophic. The opening vocal phrase of the second stanza makes use of the second phrase of the first stanza, and continues on a different path. It is introduced and continues in a lovely contrapuntal dialogue with an oboe solo that returns as the instrumental postlude of the song.

"Ich atmet’ einen linden Duft" (I breathed a gentle fragrance) musically evokes the delicate fragrance of the lime tree which the poet associates with his beloved. The orchestration is extremely delicate, often one instrument at a time, even dropping out momentarily when the poet first senses the fragrance. The continuous even motion in the strings suggests the quiet wafting of the scent through the air. The settings of the two stanzas share musical material, but are not strophic. 

 

Ich atmet' einen linden Duft!

 

Ich atmet' einen linden Duft!

Im Zimmer stand ein Zweig der Linde,

Ein Angebinde von lieber Hand.

Wie lieblich war der Lindenduft!

 

Wie lieblich ist der Lindenduft!

das Lindenreis brachst du gelinde!

Ich atme leis im Duft der Linde

Der Liebe linden Duft.