Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Homophonic translation...or, how interpreted a Romanian poem wrongly..

posted twice ...

Today at dversepoets.com we are translating poems from a language we do not know using just the sounds and look of the words instead of meaning....called "homophonic translations".
Don't ask me how I got this...I don't know!  Romanian poem is below - knowing latin is the key I suppose, but this verse took on a life of its own..



The name of my last lover was Russian                                                                
 he lay in his bed in a simple lean-to                                                                     
 he lay in his bed wrapped in white sheets 
 peering out at fiery skies of the season             
                 
 Floating from the terrace garden blooms 
 purple and white scented perfume;
 he felt a coolness and breathed in the 
 night air as he slept peacefully                                                       

 Pollen spread over him during the night
 and he began to roam in his pajamas,
 floating above his body;  until finally
 resting near me, moved closer

 The timber of each little bell flower  
 reached my ear and I smelled orchids;
 all my senses gathered in full grandeur,
  as our dreams began cascading together    

 The name of my last love was Russian
  he lay in his bed in a simple lean-to
  he lay in his bed wrapped in white sheets
  peering out at fiery skies of the season  

 Out from the dream we awoke together,
 slowly the aura of the dream disappeared;
 we stood at the altar before us at our feet
 then spoke our matrimonial forever vows

Ne-om aminti cândva târziu
de-aceasta întâmplare simpla,
de-aceasta banca unde stam
tâmpla fierbinte lânga tâmpla.
De pe stamine de alun,
din plopii albi, se cerne jarul.
Orice-nceput se vrea fecund,
risipei se deda Florarul.
Polenul cade peste noi,
în preajma galbene troiene
alcatuieste-n aur fin.
Pe umeri cade-ne si-n gene.
Ne cade-n gura când vorbim,
si-n ochi, când nu gasim cuvântul.
Si nu stim ce pareri de rau
ne tulbura, piezis, avântul.
Ne-om aminti cândva târziu
de-aceasta întâmplare simpla,
de-aceasta banca unde stam
tâmpla fierbinte lânga tâmpla.
Visând, întrezarim prin doruri -
latente-n pulberi aurii –
paduri ce ar putea sa fie
si niciodatã nu vor fi.



              

14 comments:

  1. excellent. wow. you got quite the story out of this...
    your russian lover covered in pollen having an out of body experience to draw
    closer to you...very cool translation kathy

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  2. Very lyrical indeed, you capture the romantic spirit of the original really well. I love the way you've gone with this!
    Just puzzled where everyone is getting that pyjama from...

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  3. i'm amazed if someone manages to translate in a way that it makes sense... really cool k.

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  4. wow, amazed how you got such a grand write from homophonic trans... great job indeed :))

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  5. I love a narrative poem and this one seems to match the Romanian words and rhythm beautifully.

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  6. I thought I commented here Kathy ~ I really like how this turned out - happy endings, smelling of orchids & fiery skies of the season ~

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    1. You did Grace...but I accidentally deleted the post and it took me awhile to get it going again. Thank you

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  7. If I had worked with the Romanian poem I probably would have given it a Gypsy theme; your take smacks of brilliance; becoming an existential metaphysical classical romance novella it seems; nice mix of the dreamworld & reality, & these days who expects a happy ending? I thought she would wake up with a corpse.

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  8. What a wonderful story.. the cover in pollen make me think of a Native American ritual ... and what a nice happy end :-)

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  9. That was a lovely translation Kathy, very well done and closer to the original than my effort.

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  10. A lovely, dreamy, romantic poem with a happy ending. Very, very nice, Kathy.

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