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
our dear sister
is departing for foreign
in two three days,
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.
lnhammer: lo-fi photo of a tall, thin man - caption: "some guy" (Default)
[personal profile] lnhammer
Historical background: late in the 40-odd year riegn of Tang Emperor Xuanzong, a Turkish-born general named An Lushan became a favorite of both the emperor and his beautiful concubine, Yang Guifei. As the result of political in-fighting with her cousin, the chancellor, An Lushan revolted in 755 and the next year captured the capital of Chang'an (in modern Shaanxi province). As the emperor fled over mountains to Sichuan, his guardsmen blamed the Yang family for the uprising and forced him to have Yang Guifei executed.

Needless to say, this is a Highly Romantic (and romaticized) event.

In 806, Bai Juyi wrote this poem about the affair. The translation below by Witter Bynner (1929) calls it "A Song of Unending Sorrow," but is more commonly known in English as "Song of Everlasting Regret."

China's Emperor, craving beauty that might shake an empire,
Was on the throne for many years, searching, never finding,
Till a little child of the Yang clan, hardly even grown,
Bred in an inner chamber, with no one knowing her,
But with graces granted by heaven and not to be concealed,
At last one day was chosen for the imperial household.
If she but turned her head and smiled, there were cast a hundred spells,
And the powder and paint of the Six Palaces faded into nothing.
...It was early spring. They bathed her in the FlowerPure Pool,
Which warmed and smoothed the creamy-tinted crystal of her skin,
And, because of her languor, a maid was lifting her
When first the Emperor noticed her and chose her for his bride.
The cloud of her hair, petal of her cheek, gold ripples of her crown when she moved,
Were sheltered on spring evenings by warm hibiscus curtains;
But nights of spring were short and the sun arose too soon,
And the Emperor, from that time forth, forsook his early hearings
And lavished all his time on her with feasts and revelry,
His mistress of the spring, his despot of the night.
There were other ladies in his court, three thousand of rare beauty,
But his favours to three thousand were concentered in one body.
By the time she was dressed in her Golden Chamber, it would be almost evening;
And when tables were cleared in the Tower of Jade, she would loiter, slow with wine.
Her sisters and her brothers all were given titles;
And, because she so illumined and glorified her clan,
She brought to every father, every mother through the empire,
Happiness when a girl was born rather than a boy.
...High rose Li Palace, entering blue clouds,
And far and wide the breezes carried magical notes
Of soft song and slow dance, of string and bamboo music.
The Emperor's eyes could never gaze on her enough--
Till war-drums, booming from Yuyang, shocked the whole earth )

Chinese text )

See also this line-by-line prose version from Wikimedia. Wengdu has a version with automatic dictionary lookups of the modern meaning of each character.

noldo: (Default)
[personal profile] noldo
Listen to this poem. Please. Do. Please. [audio at top of page]

french text )

english translation )

I have dropped a couple of particularly challenging puns, they are marked. Suggestions gratefully appreciated. [No, I cannot come up with a pithy rhyming translation of 'reubeu'!] [If you are curious, literal glosses of the lines respectively would be, 'Words in Hebrew like a [popular bit of verlan for 'Arab']', and 'Moldovan words, because they're the most serious'. Both of these seem to have been plays on sound foremost. Not sure how to do that in English.]
taiga13: by elleth (moon over ruins)
[personal profile] taiga13

Jactancia de quietud

Escrituras de luz embisten la sombra, más prodigiosas que meteoros.
La alta ciudad inconocible arrecia sobre el campo.
Seguro de mi vida y de mi muerte, miro los ambiciosos
y quisiera entenderlos.
Su día es ávido como el lazo en el aire.
Su noche es tregua de la ira en el hierro, pronto en acometer.
Hablan de humanidad.
Mi humanidad está en sentir que somos voces de una misma penuria.
Hablan de patria.
Mi patria es un latido de guitarra, unos retratos y una vieja espada,
la oración evidente del sauzal en los atardeceres.
El tiempo está viviéndome.
Más silencioso que mi sombra, cruzo el tropel de su levantada codicia.
Ellos son imprescindibles, únicos, merecedores del mañana.
Mi nombre es alguien y cualquiera.
Paso con lentitud, como quien viene de tan lejos que no espera llegar.

Jorge Luis Borges

English translation )
noldo: (Default)
[personal profile] noldo
Can't find an English translation of this online, though I may be searching the wrong places; thus, I have put together a quick version based on combination of Albanian dictionary and the author's own French version. Please tell me if anything has been grossly misinterpreted by me.

Edhe kur kujtesa ime e lodhur,
Ashtu si ato tramvajet e pasmesnatës
Vetëm në stacionet kryesore do të ndalojë,
Unë ty s'do të harroj.

Do të kujtoj
Mbrëmjen e heshtur, të pafund të syve të tu,
Dënesën e mbytur, rrëzuar mbi supin tim
Si një dëborë të pashkundshme.

Ndarja erdhi,
Po iki larg prej teje.
Asgjë e jashtëzakonshme,
Veç ndonjë natë
Gishtat e dikujt do pleksen në flokët e tu
Me të largëtit gishtat e mi, me kilometra të gjatë.

en français )

Even when my memory falters,
like the trams after midnight
who no longer visit any but the major stops --
I will never forget you.

I will remember
the endless and silent twilight of your eyes,
your muted sob light against my shoulder
like a flake of snow.

It's time to be separated.
I will go far from you,
to where nothing is surprising.
But, some other night, the fingers
of another in your hair will find themselves
intertwined with mine, my fingers
millions of kilometres long.
dhobikikutti: earthen diya (Default)
[personal profile] dhobikikutti
A friend forwarded me this poem by Kaifi Azmi on the Babri Masjid demolitions. I suspect it was originally written in Urdu, so if anyone has the original, or can retransliterate it back, let me know and I'll edit it into the main post. (I suspect there are a few typos in the Devnagari transliteration I was forwarded.) Likewise, a translation, which I'm too lazy to attempt.

दूसरा बनवास

राम बनवास से जब लौट के घर में आये,
याद जंगल बहुत आया जो नगर में आये,
राक्स्से दीवानगी आँगन में जो देखा होगा,
6 दिसम्बर को श्री राम ने सोचा होगा,
इतने दीवाने कहाँ से मेरे घर में आये?

जगमगाते थे जहाँ राम के क़दमों के निशाँ,
पियार की कहकशां लेती थी अंगड़ाई जहाँ,
मोड़ नफरत के उसी रह गुज़र में आये,
धरम क्या उनका है, क्या ज़ात है, यह जानता कौन?
घर न जलता तो उन्हें रात में पहचानता कौन,
घर जलाने को मेरा, लोग जो घर में आये,
शाकाहारी है मेरे दोस्त तुम्हारा खंजर |

तुमने बाबर की तरफ फेके थे सारे पत्थर,
है मेरे सर की खता ज़ख्म जो सर में आये,
पाँव सरजू में अभी राम ने धोये भी न थे
के नज़र आये वहां खून के गहरे धब्बे,
पाँव धोये बिना सरजू के किनारे से उठे,
राम यह कहते हुए आपने द्वारे से उठे,
राजधानी की फिजा आयी नहीं रास मुझे,
6 दिसम्बर को मिला दूसरा बनवास मुझे |

-- कैफ़ी आज़्मी

Roman transliteration )
noldo: (Default)
[personal profile] noldo
I apologise in advance for the transliteration.


من از نهایت شب حرف می زنم
من از نهایت تاریکی
و از نهایت شب حرف می زنم

اگر به خانه من آمدی
برای من ای مهربان چراغ بیار
و یک دریچه که از آن
به ازدحام کوچه ی خوشبخت بنگرم

transliteration )

I speak out of the deep of night.
Out of the deep of darkness,
and out of the deep of night I speak.

If you come to my house, friend:
bring me a lamp1, and a window through which I can look
at the crowd in the happy alley.

- trans. Ahmad Karimi Hakkak

1. I'm not messing with someone else's translation, but why leave out مهربان? I like that being there!
noldo: (Default)
[personal profile] noldo
More winter poetry. In this case, the final two stanzas only of a longer poem. I'm told the line most tél van és csend és hó és halál is terribly famous, and certainly it is the one quotation in Hungarian I can come up with at the drop of a metaphorical hat.

hungarian text )

english translation )
glinda: wee Amelia Pond from Dr Who, text 'chan eil mi Sassenach' which is gaelic for 'I'm not english' (gaelic Amy/not english)
[personal profile] glinda
A couple of weeks ago I wrote a piece on being a non-native minority speaker online which I thought might be of interest to other people learning other minority languages. (Also I keep hoping if I post/comment about Gaelic in enough places I'll eventually find more people who speak the language).

Otherwise, have a poem by Rody Gorman (an Irishman writing in Scots Gaelic) with English translation by the author that speaks of the problems and difficulties of translation.

Lorg Eile

Air ais cuide ri càch anns a' chlachan,
Chadh mi gan lorg anns a h-uile bad
Mar gum b'ann air falach-fead.

Chuir mi ceist air an fheadhainn
A bh' ann o chionn fhada. 'S e thuirt iad:
Ghabh iad an t'sligh' ud!

Another ThighCrutchWomanOffspringTraceConsequence

back with the rest in the goggle-eyestonechurchyardtesticlevillage, I went
to tracelook for them in every flockbushspot like a whistlehidenseek.

i asked them that were there in it a longtimeback and they said they
singburnholdwent that journeyway!
noldo: (Default)
[personal profile] noldo
A fairly free translation of Subramanya Bharati:

தேடி சோறு தினம் தின்று
பல சின்னஞ்சிறு கதைகள் பேசி
வாடி துன்பம் மிக உழன்று
பிறர் வாட பல செய்கை செய்து
நரை கூடி கிழப்பருவம் எய்தி
கொடும் கூற்றுக்கிறையாகி மாயும்
சில வேடிக்கை மனிதரை போலவே
நானும் வீழ்வேன் என்று நினைத்தாயோ?

tēḍi cōṟu diṉam tiṉdṟu
pala ciṉṉañciṟu kadaigaḷ pēci
vāḍi tuṉbam miga uḻaṉṟu
piṟar vāḍa pala ceygai ceytu
narai kūḍi kiḻapparuvam eydi
kodum kūtṟṟukkiṟayāgi māyum
cila vēḍikkai maṉidarai pōlavē
nāṉum vīḻvēṉ eṉṟu niṉaittāyō?

Did you think I, too, would simply follow suit:
give up, and be struck down like these fools,
these laughable people who spend their days
in small things: meals, dejection, insignificant stories;
who while vilifying and being vilified
watch their hair greying, quickly?
spiralsheep: Flowers (skywardprodigal Cog Flowers)
[personal profile] spiralsheep
It's autumn here in my four-seasoned, north-of-the-equator, home but I know some of you are a world away from me. Inspired by [personal profile] kore, have some Nobel prize-winning-poet produce in Swedish and then English translation....

Tomas Tranströmer

Ljuset Strömmar In

Utanför fönstret är vårens långa djur
den genomskinliga draken av solsken
rinner förbi som ett ändlöst
förortståg – vi hann aldrig se huvudet.

Strandvillorna flyttar sig i sidled
de är stolta som krabbor.
Solen får statyerna att blinka.

Det rasande eldhavet ute i rymden
transjorderas till en smekning.
Nedräkningen har börjat.

(Translation by Patty Crane)

The Light Streams In

Translation and second poem with audio. )
lnhammer: lo-fi photo of a tall, thin man - caption: "some guy" (Default)
[personal profile] lnhammer

natsu no yo no
fusu ka to soreba
naku hitokoe ni
akuru shinonome

    While I consider
possibly going to bed
    of a summer night --
with a single cuckoo's voice,
the first breaking light of dawn.

By Ki no Tsurayuki.

Written for (or at least presented at) a poetry contest held in 893. I am intrigued by how in the first line "night" (yo) is followed by a genitive/locative case-marker instead of the expected topic-marking particle, which has the effect of de-emphasizing the time -- and so plays into the speaker's losing track of it. I shifted that image down to the third line to mimic that de-emphasis.
anatsuno: Calvin (without Hobbes) explains that "verbing weirds language" (verbose & cunning)
[personal profile] anatsuno
So there's been  a great big "hommage à Serge Gainsbourg" show the Hollywood bowl and I WANTED TO BE THERE SO HARD QSSDFDHGF.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt was there to perform the opening song of the Melody Nelson concept album, which is more os a spoken monologue - and this led me to post in my journal both the lyrics & a translation I did, as well as the lyrics of another favorite Gainsbourg song of mine and a download link.

I thought I'd repost the lyrics & translation here, as might be more appropriate / generate more interest. :)

Any comment welcome, from questions to translation critique - this was done rather quickly. Fun, though!

Melody, bilingue )


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