The troops are singing fervently, each for himself:
God, protect me from misfortune,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
That no grenades strike me,
Before I die, I must just find this rhyme.
Be quiet, my friends, and do not waste any time.
O you Berlin, you colorful stone, you beast.
You cast me with street lamps like briars.
A fog has destroyed the world so gently.
Bloodless trees dissolve in smoke.
And shadows hover where shrieks are heard.
A fat young man plays with a pond.
The wind has caught itself in a tree.
The pale sky seems to be rumpled,
As though it had run out of makeup.
It sure was fine to be a soldier for a year.
But it is finer to feel free again.
There was enough of depravity and pain
I am the Division Commander,
I have attained what is humanly possible.
A frozen moon stands waxen,
Above me and the dull
Many sick people are walking in the garden
Back and forth and lying in the porches.
Those who are the sickest burn with fever
The earth grows moldy in fog.
The evening is as oppressive as lead.
Electric sparks crackle and whimper all around,
Breaking everything in two.