ballad for the insufficiency of human plans

Bertolt Brecht, Die Dreigroschenoper 1929

tr. from german by Natalie Ada Mariko


man lives by his Head.

but his Head is not sufficient.

just try it, using your Head 

at most 1 Louse can live.

because in this Life

man isn't smart enough.

he never even noticed

this Lie & Deception.


yes, just make a Plan!

just be a big Lamp!

& then make yet another Plan

so you don't Go to do either.

because for this Life

man isn't bad enough.

but his higher-Striving

is a nice move.


yes, just run after Happiness

but don't run too hard

because everyone runs after Happiness

yet Happiness runs further.

because in this Life

man isn't modest enough.

so all his Striving

is Self-deception.


man is no good at all

so hit his Head.

you slapped his Head

so he might be good.

because for this life

man isn't good enough.

that's what Calms

his Head!