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EBal
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Selected Poems - International

September 13th, 2014, 5:34 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: trackstarOn the Sorrows of Cyrillic TranslationThe glass is never half-full for some --A poem in translation is a new poemHere born in RussianRaised in English by a German-American Jewwith a gift for words and a sense of history.Since some read Russian too, quietly, with dictionaries,The poem bears fruit in several forms.Go now, half-empty glass, and become full.- trackstarWell said trackstar. I am not competent to judge the poetic qualitiesof the translation. Having read the original first, I like the translationthough. It follows the original pretty closely, and some versescomplement Russian text nicely because the same idea isexpressed differently making it easier to understand the original. Or maybe it's not same idea anymore. I am not sure about this particularpoem but I know Brodsky worked with translators of his poetry veryclosely so maybe it is.
 
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trackstar
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September 13th, 2014, 6:02 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: EBalWell said trackstar. I am not competent to judge the poetic qualitiesof the translation. Having read the original first, I like the translationthough. It follows the original pretty closely, and some versescomplement Russian text nicely because the same idea isexpressed differently making it easier to understand the original. Or maybe it's not same idea anymore. I am not sure about this particularpoem but I know Brodsky worked with translators of his poetry veryclosely so maybe it is.It is a beautiful and intriguing translation, for the reasons that you mention.There are a number of poets, some American, who have tried to adapt poems in other languages to English in a sensitive way, faithfully preserving the meaning, without rigidly translating word for word, line for line. Robert Bly is one name that comes to mind, Anthony Hecht is another. I have a book of poems by Umberto Saba which contains the original Italian, with English corollaries on facing pages. The authors of this edition provide their philosophy on translation eloquently in the introduction.Songbook - The Selected Poems of Umberto Saba - Yale U PressSome might argue that if you are not Italian, you will never be able to relate to the themes of melancholy, dark and light, tragic humor, and solitude that are present in Saba's work.But, if we turn off the iPhone (and W Forum!) for an hour or so, maybe we can catch a glimpse of his world. The same is true of Brodsky, with a different texture.
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December 6th, 2014, 11:25 pm

Sunday MorningIComplacencies of the peignoir, and lateCoffee and oranges in a sunny chair,And the green freedom of a cockatooUpon a rug mingle to dissipateThe holy hush of ancient sacrifice.She dreams a little, and she feels the darkEncroachment of that old catastrophe,As a calm darkens among water-lights.The pungent oranges and bright, green wingsSeem things in some procession of the dead,Winding across wide water, without sound.The day is like wide water, without sound,Stilled for the passing of her dreaming feetOver the seas, to silent Palestine,Dominion of the blood and sepulchre. IIWhy should she give her bounty to the dead?What is divinity if it can comeOnly in silent shadows and in dreams?Shall she not find in comforts of the sun,In pungent fruit and bright, green wings, or elseIn any balm or beauty of the earth,Things to be cherished like the thought of heaven?Divinity must live within herself:Passions of rain, or moods in falling snow;Grievings in loneliness, or unsubduedElations when the forest blooms; gustyEmotions on wet roads on autumn nights;All pleasures and all pains, rememberingThe bough of summer and the winter branch.These are the measures destined for her soul. IIIJove in the clouds had his inhuman birth.No mother suckled him, no sweet land gaveLarge-mannered motions to his mythy mind.He moved among us, as a muttering king,Magnificent, would move among his hinds,Until our blood, commingling, virginal,With heaven, brought such requital to desireThe very hinds discerned it, in a star.Shall our blood fail? Or shall it come to beThe blood of paradise? And shall the earthSeem all of paradise that we shall know?The sky will be much friendlier then than now,A part of labor and a part of pain,And next in glory to enduring love,Not this dividing and indifferent blue. IVShe says, "I am content when wakened birds,Before they fly, test the realityOf misty fields, by their sweet questionings;But when the birds are gone, and their warm fieldsReturn no more, where, then, is paradise?"There is not any haunt of prophecy,Nor any old chimera of the grave,Neither the golden underground, nor isleMelodious, where spirits gat them home,Nor visionary south, nor cloudy palmRemote on heaven's hill, that has enduredAs April's green endures; or will endureLike her remembrance of awakened birds,Or her desire for June and evening, tippedBy the consummation of the swallow's wings. VShe says, "But in contentment I still feelThe need of some imperishable bliss."Death is the mother of beauty; hence from her,Alone, shall come fulfilment to our dreamsAnd our desires. Although she strews the leavesOf sure obliteration on our paths,The path sick sorrow took, the many pathsWhere triumph rang its brassy phrase, or loveWhispered a little out of tenderness,She makes the willow shiver in the sunFor maidens who were wont to sit and gazeUpon the grass, relinquished to their feet.She causes boys to pile new plums and pearsOn disregarded plate. The maidens tasteAnd stray impassioned in the littering leaves. VIIs there no change of death in paradise?Does ripe fruit never fall? Or do the boughsHang always heavy in that perfect sky,Unchanging, yet so like our perishing earth,With rivers like our own that seek for seasThey never find, the same receding shoresThat never touch with inarticulate pang?Why set the pear upon those river banksOr spice the shores with odors of the plum?Alas, that they should wear our colors there,The silken weavings of our afternoons,And pick the strings of our insipid lutes!Death is the mother of beauty, mystical,Within whose burning bosom we deviseOur earthly mothers waiting, sleeplessly. VIISupple and turbulent, a ring of menShall chant in orgy on a summer mornTheir boisterous devotion to the sun,Not as a god, but as a god might be,Naked among them, like a savage source.Their chant shall be a chant of paradise,Out of their blood, returning to the sky;And in their chant shall enter, voice by voice,The windy lake wherein their lord delights,The trees, like serafin, and echoing hills,That choir among themselves long afterward.They shall know well the heavenly fellowshipOf men that perish and of summer morn.And whence they came and whither they shall goThe dew upon their feet shall manifest. VIIIShe hears, upon that water without sound,A voice that cries, "The tomb in PalestineIs not the porch of spirits lingering.It is the grave of Jesus, where he lay."We live in an old chaos of the sun,Or old dependency of day and night,Or island solitude, unsponsored, free,Of that wide water, inescapable.Deer walk upon our mountains, and the quailWhistle about us their spontaneous cries;Sweet berries ripen in the wilderness;And, in the isolation of the sky,At evening, casual flocks of pigeons makeAmbiguous undulations as they sink,Downward to darkness, on extended wings.- Wallace Stevens, Poetry (November 1915).
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December 11th, 2014, 1:42 am

Lied Vom KindseinAls das Kind Kind war,ging es mit hängenden Armen,wollte der Bach sei ein Fluß,der Fluß sei ein Strom,und diese Pfütze das Meer.Als das Kind Kind war,wußte es nicht, daß es Kind war,alles war ihm beseelt,und alle Seelen waren eins.Als das Kind Kind war,hatte es von nichts eine Meinung,hatte keine Gewohnheit,saß oft im Schneidersitz,lief aus dem Stand,hatte einen Wirbel im Haarund machte kein Gesicht beim fotografieren.Als das Kind Kind war,war es die Zeit der folgenden Fragen:Warum bin ich ich und warum nicht du?Warum bin ich hier und warum nicht dort?Wann begann die Zeit und wo endet der Raum?Ist das Leben unter der Sonne nicht bloß ein Traum?Ist was ich sehe und höre und riechenicht bloß der Schein einer Welt vor der Welt?Gibt es tatsächlich das Böse und Leute,die wirklich die Bösen sind?Wie kann es sein, daß ich, der ich bin,bevor ich wurde, nicht war,und daß einmal ich, der ich bin,nicht mehr der ich bin, sein werde?Song of ChildhoodWhen the child was a childit walked with its arms swinging,wanted the brook to be a river,the river to be a torrent,and this puddle to be the sea.When the child was a child,it didn't know that it was a child,to it, everything had a soul,and all souls were one.When the child was a child,it had no opinion about anything,had no habits,it often sat cross-legged,took off running,had a cowlick in its hair,and made no faces when photographed.When the child was a child,It was the time for these questions:Why am I me, and why not you?Why am I here, and why not there?When did time begin, and where does space end?Is life under the sun not just a dream?Is what I see and hear and smellnot just the reflection of a world before the world?Is there really such a thing as evil, and peoplewho really are the Bad Guys?How can it be that the I, who I am,didn't exist before I came to be,and that, someday, the I who I am,will no longer be who I am?- Peter Handke
 
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January 8th, 2015, 8:28 pm

Boglandfor T. P. FlanaganWe have no prairiesTo slice a big sun at evening -Everywhere the eye concedes toEncrouching horizon,Is wooed into the cyclops' eyeOf a tarn. Our unfenced countryIs bog that keeps crustingBetween the sights of the sun.They've taken the skeletonOf the Great Irish ElkOut of the peat, set it upAn astounding crate full of air.Butter sunk underMore than a hundred yearsWas recovered salty and white.The ground itself is kind, black butterMelting and opening underfoot,Missing its last definitionBy millions of years.They'll never dig coal here,Only the waterlogged trunksOf great firs, soft as pulp.Our pioneers keep strikingInwards and downwards,Every layer they stripSeems camped on before.The bogholes might be Atlantic seepage.The wet centre is bottomless. - Seamus Heaney
 
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Cuchulainn
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January 8th, 2015, 8:42 pm

Seamus Heaney readily admitted that he would be nowhere without the influence of Patrick Kavanagh from Inishkeen which is just down the road from me and where grandpa Daniel was bornO stony grey soil of MonaghanThe laugh from my love you thieved;You took the gay child of my passionAnd gave me your clod-conceived.You clogged the feet of my boyhoodAnd I believed that my stumbleHad the poise and stride of ApolloAnd his voice my thick-tongued mumble.You told me the plough was immortal!O green-life-conquering plough!Your mandril strained, your coulter bluntedIn the smooth lea-field of my brow.You sang on steaming dunghillsA song of cowards' brood,You perfumed my clothes with weasel itch,You fed me on swinish food.You flung a ditch on my visionOf beauty, love and truth.O stony grey soil of MonaghanYou burgled my bank of youth!Lost the long hours of pleasureAll the women that love young men.O can I still stroke the monster's backOr write with unpoisoned penHis name in these lonely versesOr mention the dark fields where The first gay flight of my lyricGot caught in a peasant's prayer.Mullahinsha, Drummeril, Black Shanco-Wherever I turn I seeIn the stony grey soil of MonaghanDead loves that were born for me. -Patrick Kavanagh.Stony grey soil of Monaghan
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June 9th, 2015, 5:13 am

No hay alegría que te alegre tanto como caer de golpe en la tristezani dolor que te duela tan a fondo como el placer de vivir sin objeto.Grave edad, hay algunos que se matan porque no pueden soportar la muerte,quienes se entregan a una causa injusta en su sed sanguinaria de justicia.Los que más bajo caen son los grandes,a los pequeños les perdemos el rumbo."Monólogo del padre con su hijo" de Enrique Lihn
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ExSan
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June 9th, 2015, 7:12 am

QuoteOriginally posted by: katastrofaNo hay alegría que te alegre tanto como caer de golpe en la tristezani dolor que te duela tan a fondo como el placer de vivir sin objeto.Grave edad, hay algunos que se matan porque no pueden soportar la muerte,quienes se entregan a una causa injusta en su sed sanguinaria de justicia.Los que más bajo caen son los grandes,a los pequeños les perdemos el rumbo."Monólogo del padre con su hijo" de Enrique Lihnmuy bueno ! gracias
 
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rmax
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July 30th, 2015, 12:18 am

I scarce believe my love to be so pure As I had thought it was, Because it doth endureVicissitude, and season, as the grass;Methinks I lied all winter, when I sworeMy love was infinite, if spring make? it more.But if medicine, love, which cures all sorrowWith more, not only be no quintessence,But mixed of all stuffs paining soul or sense,And of the sun his working vigor borrow,Love?s not so pure, and abstract, as they useTo say, which have no mistress but their muse,But as all else, being elemented too,Love sometimes would contemplate, sometimes do.And yet no greater, but more eminent, Love by the spring is grown; As, in the firmament,Stars by the sun are not enlarged, but shown,Gentle love deeds, as blossoms on a bough,From love?s awakened root do bud out now.If, as water stirred more circles beProduced by one, love such additions take,Those, like so many spheres, but one heaven make,For they are all concentric unto thee;And though each spring do add to love new heat,As princes do in time of action getNew taxes, and remit them not in peace,No winter shall abate the spring?s increase. John Donne
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July 30th, 2015, 12:45 am

SimplicityIt opens, the gate to the gardenwith the docility of a pagethat frequent devotion questionsand inside, my gazehas no need to fix on objectsthat already exist, exact, in memory.I know the customs and soulsand that dialect of allusionsthat every human gathering goes weaving.I've no need to speaknor claim false privilege;they know me well who surround me here,know well my afflictions and weakness.This is to reach the highest thing,that Heaven perhaps will grant us:not admiration or victorybut simply to be acceptedas part of an undeniable Reality,like stones and trees. - Jorge Luis Borges
 
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tagoma
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October 22nd, 2015, 3:11 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: ExSan"... they thought I was surreal,but I was not. I never painted my dreams,I just painted my own reality " Frida Kahlo paintingsLa Llorona - Que Viva la Huasteca No sé si el corazón peca, llorona, en aras de un tierno amorpor una linda Tehuana, llorona, más hermosa que una flor.¡Ay!, ¡ay!, ¡ay! llorona, llorona tú eres mi xunca,me quitarán de quererte, ¡ay! llorona, pero de olvidarte, nunca.Dos besos llevo en el alma, llorona, que no se apartan de mí, el último de mi madre, ¡ay! llorona, y el primero que te di. ¡Ay! ¡ay! llorona, llorona de azul celeste,aunque la vida me cueste, ¡ay! llorona, no dejaré de quererte. Si porque te quiero quieres, llorona, quieres que te quiera más, te quiero más que a mi vida, llorona, ¿qué más quieres?, ¿quieres más?=
 
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ExSan
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October 22nd, 2015, 6:06 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: tagomaQuoteOriginally posted by: ExSan"... they thought I was surreal,but I was not. I never painted my dreams,I just painted my own reality " Frida Kahlo paintingsLa Llorona - Que Viva la Huasteca No sé si el corazón peca, llorona, en aras de un tierno amorpor una linda Tehuana, llorona, más hermosa que una flor.¡Ay!, ¡ay!, ¡ay! llorona, llorona tú eres mi xunca,me quitarán de quererte, ¡ay! llorona, pero de olvidarte, nunca.Dos besos llevo en el alma, llorona, que no se apartan de mí, el último de mi madre, ¡ay! llorona, y el primero que te di. ¡Ay! ¡ay! llorona, llorona de azul celeste,aunque la vida me cueste, ¡ay! llorona, no dejaré de quererte. Si porque te quiero quieres, llorona, quieres que te quiera más, te quiero más que a mi vida, llorona, ¿qué más quieres?, ¿quieres más?=Llorona
 
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tagoma
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October 22nd, 2015, 6:15 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: ExSanQuoteOriginally posted by: tagomaQuoteOriginally posted by: ExSan"... they thought I was surreal,but I was not. I never painted my dreams,I just painted my own reality " Frida Kahlo paintingsLa Llorona - Que Viva la Huasteca No sé si el corazón peca, llorona, en aras de un tierno amorpor una linda Tehuana, llorona, más hermosa que una flor.¡Ay!, ¡ay!, ¡ay! llorona, llorona tú eres mi xunca,me quitarán de quererte, ¡ay! llorona, pero de olvidarte, nunca.Dos besos llevo en el alma, llorona, que no se apartan de mí, el último de mi madre, ¡ay! llorona, y el primero que te di. ¡Ay! ¡ay! llorona, llorona de azul celeste,aunque la vida me cueste, ¡ay! llorona, no dejaré de quererte. Si porque te quiero quieres, llorona, quieres que te quiera más, te quiero más que a mi vida, llorona, ¿qué más quieres?, ¿quieres más?=LloronaLa Lorona, indeed! I noticed it is also in Manu Chao's La Mentira (2'45'')=
 
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ExSan
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October 22nd, 2015, 6:22 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: tagomaQuoteOriginally posted by: ExSanQuoteOriginally posted by: tagomaQuoteOriginally posted by: ExSan"... they thought I was surreal,but I was not. I never painted my dreams,I just painted my own reality " Frida Kahlo paintingsLa Llorona - Que Viva la Huasteca No sé si el corazón peca, llorona, en aras de un tierno amorpor una linda Tehuana, llorona, más hermosa que una flor.¡Ay!, ¡ay!, ¡ay! llorona, llorona tú eres mi xunca,me quitarán de quererte, ¡ay! llorona, pero de olvidarte, nunca.Dos besos llevo en el alma, llorona, que no se apartan de mí, el último de mi madre, ¡ay! llorona, y el primero que te di. ¡Ay! ¡ay! llorona, llorona de azul celeste,aunque la vida me cueste, ¡ay! llorona, no dejaré de quererte. Si porque te quiero quieres, llorona, quieres que te quiera más, te quiero más que a mi vida, llorona, ¿qué más quieres?, ¿quieres más?=LloronaLa Lorona, indeed! I noticed it is also in Manu Chao's La Mentira (2'45'')=Raphael Matos -Spain- a good performance
 
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Re: Selected Poems - International

August 7th, 2016, 10:21 pm

Portrait of a Lady

A good poem but the HTML was bothering me.  So deleting imperfection.
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