spiralsheep: Woman blowing heart-shaped bubbles (Bubble Rainbow)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
The Poetry Translation Centre, dedicated to translating works by African and Asian and Latin American poets into English (while further publishing the poems in their original language/script alongside), has launched a book to celebrate a decade of translations. This book, published by Bloodaxe, is just short of 400 pages and contains 111 poems by 45 poets in 23 languages (from Arabic to Zapotec). All the poems are presented in their original languages/scripts first and then in an English translation made through the collaboration of literal translators with respected English poets. It’s been sponsored by various worthy organisations and has a cover price of only £12. Bloodaxe are also intending to publish collections by some of the individual poets in the coming years.

My Voice page at Bloodaxe Books.

(1) Literary event in London with multilingual readings and discussions and (2) the official book launch in London with multilingual readings and discussions. I’ve been lucky enough to hear Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi from Sudan reading intensely in Arabic (modern standard, obv) and Reza Mohammadi from Afghanistan reading lyrically in Persian (Dari, amongst other dialects), and to listen to them both discussing poetry and translation in English, and I wholeheartedly recommend the experience.

The title of the book is taken from a poem by Partaw Naderi, translated as "My Voice".

My Voice by Partaw Naderi (written in Kabul, December, 1989)

I come from a distant land

with a foreign knapsack on my back

with a silenced song on my lips

As I travelled down the river of my life

I saw my voice

(like Jonah)

swallowed by a whale

And my very life lived in my voice


The Persian/Dari original poem. The literal translation is by Yama Yari and the poetic translation by Sarah Maguire.

There are many other poems freely available on the Poetry Translation Centre website. Enjoy!
spiralsheep: Ladies Sewing Circle and Terrorist Society (Sewing Circle Terrorist Society)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
I posted two poems for the UK's National Poetry Day at my journal. The first is Pia Tafdrup's poem for Norway, in Danish with an English translation. The second is a humorous piece about linguistic and cultural translations written by a Scottish poet about the English and the French, and using both languages.
spiralsheep: Reality is a dangerous concept (babel Blake Reality Dangerous Concept)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
A poem about language, scripts, and translations, offered without translation, because I thought some of you would appreciate it.

Hill Speak by Zaffar Kunial
 
There is no dictionary for my father’s language. )
spiralsheep: Flowers (skywardprodigal Cog Flowers)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
I saw this poem by Nobel Prize-winning poet Wisława Szymborska in translation on the (recently linked) [community profile] poetree com and thought I'd track down the Polish original because I've read two other translations and neither of them appealed to me at all but this one by Adam Czerniawski made me want to read more. More of her poems can be found, with English and Swedish translations, on the Nobel Prize website amongst many other places.

Dnia 16 maja 1973 roku

Jedna z tych wielu dat,
kóre nie mówią mi już nic.

Dokąd w tym dniu chodziłam.
co robiłam - nie wiem.

Gdyby w pobliżu popełniono zbrodnię
- nie miałabym alibi.

Słońce błysło i zgasło
poza moją uwagą.
Ziemia się obróciła
bez wzmianki w notesie.

The rest and an English translation. )
carthaginians: ([art] holi)
[personal profile] carthaginians
Friends,
our dear sister
is departing for foreign
in two three days,
and
we are meeting today
to wish her bon voyage.


You are all knowing, friends,
What sweetness is in Miss Pushpa.
I don't mean only external sweetness
but internal sweetness.
Miss Pushpa is smiling and smiling
even for no reason but simply because
she is feeling.


Miss Pushpa is coming
from very high family.
Her father was renowned advocate
in Bulsar or Surat,
I am not remembering now which place.


Surat? Ah, yes,
once only I stayed in Surat
with family members
of my uncle's very old friend-
his wife was cooking nicely…

that was long time ago.
Coming back to Miss Pushpa
she is most popular lady
with men also and ladies also.


Whenever I asked her to do anything,
she was saying, 'Just now only
I will do it.' That is showing
good spirit. I am always
appreciating the good spirit.


Pushpa Miss is never saying no.
Whatever I or anybody is asking
she is always saying yes,
and today she is going
to improve her prospect
and we are wishing her bon voyage.

Now I ask other speakers to speak
and afterwards Miss Pushpa
will do summing up.
pauamma: Cartooney crab holding drink (Default)
[personal profile] pauamma
Language imperialism

The picture in the linked post is of 2 "Caution, wet floor" yellow plastic signs. The one on the right is in English only, the one on the left in English and Spanish.

excerpt

Aug. 15th, 2011 02:42 pm
k_a_t_z: (heart)
[personal profile] k_a_t_z

Christina Rossetti (1830 — 1894)

In the bleak midwinter
Frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron,
Water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
Snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter
Long ago.

Кристина Россетти

Той зимой морозной
Ветер выл сурово,
Мир застыл как камень,
Сталью вод окован.
Снег ложился, падал снова,
Падал снова
Той зимою древней
И суровой.



(c)Перевод. k_a_t_z, 2011
http://stihi.ru/2011/08/15/4225
spiralsheep: Flowers (skywardprodigal Cog Flowers)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
I've been trying to read more widely, and share my enthusiasms at poetry readings. I try to read an original before an English translation and I like to credit (and critique) translators. But I've been having difficulty finding information on Octavio Paz in English, particularly one well-known poem. I normally manage better than this. Perhaps I'm asking the wrong questions?

Can anyone in this com point me towards an original of "No More Cliches"? Is there a translator in addition to Paz? Or was it originally in English? Is this "translation" so far from an original that it shows few resemblances? Help, please?

(My Spanish comprehension is non-existent, sorry.)

No More Clichés

Poem )
spiralsheep: Flowers (skywardprodigal Cog Flowers)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
For reasons that will become apparent, I prefer not to translate this poem by Benjamin Zephaniah (although I will interpret and elucidate on request). Note: author's dialect/accent is Brummie (i.e. from Birmingham, England), and English Rastafarian, and with Caribbean Island inheritances.

More Benjamin Zephaniah here: http://spiralsheep.dreamwidth.org/358757.html

Translate

Who will translate
Dis stuff.
Who can decipher
De dread chant
Dat cum fram
De body
An soul
Dubwise?

3 more verses this way.... )
tevere: Jihae, solemn with hint of smile (Default)
[personal profile] tevere
I recently reviewed Shailja Patel's poetry collection Migritude over in my journal, but at [personal profile] dhobikikutti's request I'm cross-posting here one of my favourite poems from the collection. Patel is a Kenyan Asian now living in the US, and her poetry and performances concern the lives and experiences of migrants, particularly women of colour. (If anyone has had the opportunity to see one of her live performances, do please share your thoughts!) Apologies to those who have seen this post before.

Shilling Love Part 1 )
mercredigirl: Picture of ginger, captioned: 'Old ginger is the hottest (a Chinese idiom)? Nah, I'm pretty bitchy too!' (Ginger!)
[personal profile] mercredigirl
Great Expectations is a novel which has been historically acclaimed as a portrait of the Victorian society of Eng-land, and of the social mobility that was taking place during this time of upheaval. Named for the autocratic monarch of the country at that time, this period was marked by a gradual liberalisation of the native warlords (who began taking on a more political than military role) and of the gender-segregated and caste-based society. The author of the novel, Dickens Charles (Man or Male-person, a common Eng-land name), was one of the most representative writers of Eng-land.

My father's family name being Pirrip, and my Christian name Philip1, my infant tongue could make of both names nothing longer or more explicit than Pip. So, I called myself Pip, and came to be called Pip.

I give Pirrip as my father's family name, on the authority of his tombstone and my sister - Mrs. Joe2 Gargery, who married the blacksmith. As I never saw my father or my mother, and never saw any likeness of either of them (for their days were long before the days of photographs), my first fancies regarding what they were like, were unreasonably derived from their tombstones3. The shape of the letters on my father's, gave me an odd idea that he was a square, stout, dark man, with curly black hair. From the character and turn of the inscription, "Also Georgiana4 Wife of the Above," I drew a childish conclusion that my mother was freckled and sickly. To five little stone lozenges, each about a foot and a half long, which were arranged in a neat row beside their grave, and were sacred to the memory of five little brothers of mine - who gave up trying to get a living, exceedingly early in that universal struggle - I am indebted for a belief I religiously entertained that they had all been born on their backs with their hands in their trousers-pockets, and had never taken them out in this state of existence.

Ours was the marsh country, down by the river, within, as the river wound, twenty miles of the sea. My first most vivid and broad impression of the identity of things, seems to me to have been gained on a memorable raw afternoon towards evening. At such a time I found out for certain, that this bleak place overgrown with nettles5 was the churchyard6; and that Philip Pirrip, late of this parish7, and also Georgiana wife of the above, were dead and buried; and that Alexander8, Bartholomew9, Abraham10, Tobias11, and Roger12, infant children of the aforesaid, were also dead and buried; and that the dark flat wilderness beyond the churchyard, intersected with dykes13 and mounds and gates, with scattered cattle feeding on it, was the marshes; and that the low leaden line beyond, was the river; and that the distant savage lair from which the wind was rushing, was the sea; and that the small bundle of shivers growing afraid of it all and beginning to cry, was Pip.


1 Horse-lover. The Anglo-Saxon peoples originated as nomadic horse-tribes. A Christian name is the given name of the person, typically bestowed upon a child in a religious initation ritual called christening. A family name is a second name common to all members of a patriarchal family unit. These peoples put the given name preceding the family name.
2 An abbreviation of the common name He-will-add (Joseph). Mrs is a prefix that indicates his aunt was the wife of Gargery Joe. Women in this time legally renounced their own names and properties upon their marriages.
3 These people traditionally bury their dead and erect over the graves small squarish stones carved with the names of the deceased.
4 A female form of the common name Farmer (George).
5 A weed which stings the hands, common to the inhospitable terrain of Eng-land.
6 A burial-yard attached to a church (religious building; these people are typically monotheists whose central tenet of faith is the incarnation, execution and resurrection of their god).
7 The region supervised by a single member of their priesthood.
8 Defender-of-men.
9 Son-of-the-furrowed.
10 Father-of-a-multitude. In their tribal mythology, this was a nomad who made a contract with their patron god to be the ancestor of many descendants as long as they kept their agreement.
11 God-is-good.
12 Famous-spear. By this time, however, the Anglo-Saxon peoples were no longer organised in a warrior-oriented caste system. Armies still existed, and could be summoned by the native warlords (called peers of the realm).
13 A flood-gate, frequently found in the landscape which the narrator describes.
glass_icarus: (bibliophile)
[personal profile] glass_icarus
DEDICATION

The fact that I
am writing to you
in English
already falsifies what I
wanted to tell you.
My subject:
how to explain to you
that I don’t belong to English
though I belong nowhere else,
if not here
in English.

— Gustavo Pérez Firmat
seekingferret: Photo of me with my 2012 Purim beard, with stripes shaven into it. (Default)
[personal profile] seekingferret
I loved Yael Naim's last album, especially "Paris", where she sings in both Hebrew and French about an old love affair.

Her new album is recently out, and it includes this song that seems to define the notion of forked tongues.

"Game Is Over" by Yael Naim

the game is over for mon coeur
i won’t need to stand bad humeur
i will not feel this douleur
since the game is over for mon coeur

i begin to see the lumière
things will not be like hier
it’s crazy mais je n’ai pas peur
since the game is over
the game is over for mon coeur

the game is over for mon coeur
and i don’t see the same couleurs
where will i find my bonheur ?
since the game is over for mon coeur

i’m crying almost every heure
i’m fragile like a little fleur
la vie semble sad, that’s for sure
since the game is over
the game is over for mon coeur
bravecows: Picture of a brown cow writing next to some books (Default)
[personal profile] bravecows
The Chinese writer Lin Yutang, who I believed was based in the USA at the time, quotes the following in his book The Importance of Living from "Ch'asu, an excellent treatise on tea". I have no idea who wrote this or indeed if it is even a real book, rather than something Lin Yutang made up himself; do let me know if you've heard of it and know where the original may be found.

Proper moments for drinking tea:

When one's heart and hands are idle.
Tired after reading poetry.
When one's thoughts are disturbed.
continued under the cut )

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