tonton son cochon (Tontons pig)tonton son cochon affrontetonton: dehors cochon dehorstonton son cochon plongetonton: o otonton apporte cotontonton apporte bonbonstonton dorstonton: cochon cochontonton fondtonton son cochon cognetonton: bon cochon bontonton son cochon rapportetonton son cochon crottetonton: comme un cochonEdith Werner
And the winner is . . .fritz’s bitchfritz’s bitch itchesfritz: quit bitch quitfritz’s bitch quits itfritz: nitwitfritz picks chipsfritz picks dipsfritz listensfritz: bitch bitchfritz wishesfritz’s bitch twitchesfritz: sit bitch sitfritz’s bitch sitsfritz’s bitch is sickfritz: shitshitshitBrian MurdochBrian Murdoch teaches Modern Languages at the University of Stirling,Scotland.
"There were four translations which tried to achieve abalance between form and content, and all in a highlyindividual manner. All four dare to express their ownreadings parallel to the act of translation. BrianMurdochs translation does all of this and remainstruest to the original. What I liked particularly was thatthe translations play very speciﬁcally with the nuancesof sounds and meaning in the English language."
Je hay du Florentin lusurière avarice, I hate bloody Bankers and their bloatedJe hay du fol Siennois le sens mal arresté, paychecks,Je hay du Genevois la rare vérité, I hate Union Leaders for their economicEt du Vénitien la trop caute malice. botchery, Our one-seventy plus quangos junketing andJe hay le Ferrarais pour je ne sçay quel debauchery,vice, But primarily Fianna fail, with its cute hoorJe hay tous les Lombards pour linﬁdélité, rednecks.Le ﬁer Napolitain pour sa grand vanité,Et le poltron romain pour son peu I hate Catholic priests, I know well who deydexercice. fecks, I hate successive Taoisigh for what amounts to Treachery,Je hay lAnglais mutin et le brave Ecossais,Le traître Bourguignon et lindiscret Government spin-doctery and economic doc-François, witchery,Le superbe Espaignol et lyvrongne And Politicos’ dads for not wearing Durex.Thudesque:Bref, je hay quelque vice en chasque I hate sombreroed wetbacks; thonged, toplessnation, Brazilians, Tiny turtle-headed Chinese, migrant Poles inJe hay moymesme encor mon their zillions,imperfection, The Oktoberfest Krauts, QuixDotty’s knight-Mais je hay par sur tout un sçavoir errantry: Anyway, I hate every vice of every nationality.
Joachim du Bellay All nations have some faultRegrets, no 68 I hate the Florentines’ usurious greed,Je hay du Florentin lusurière avarice, Siena’s galloping insanity,Je hay du fol Siennois le sens mal arresté, the Genoese disingenuity,Je hay du Genevois la rare vérité, Venice for malice and the dirty deed;Et du Vénitien la trop caute malice. I hate Ferrara for who knows what vice,Je hay le Ferrarais pour je ne sçay quel the Lombards’ unreliability;vice, Napolitano swank and vanity,Je hay tous les Lombards pour linﬁdélité, the shirking Roman’s lack of exercise;Le ﬁer Napolitain pour sa grand vanité,Et le poltron romain pour son peu the cocky Englishman, the plucky Scot,dexercice. the Spanish snob and the Teutonic sot, blundering French, perﬁdious Burgundy:Je hay lAnglais mutin et le brave Ecossais, nations have some fault that I abhor; AllLe traître Bourguignon et lindiscretFrançois, I hate my own imperfect self still more;Le superbe Espaignol et lyvrongne but what I hate the most is pedantry.Thudesque:Bref, je hay quelque vice en chasque Translated by Timothy Adès.nation,
Joachim du BellayRegrets, no 68 All nations have some faultJe hay du Florentin lusurière avarice, I hate the Florentines’ usurious greed,Je hay du fol Siennois le sens mal arresté, Siena’s galloping insanity,Je hay du Genevois la rare vérité, the Genoese disingenuity,Et du Vénitien la trop caute malice. Venice for malice and the dirty deed;Je hay le Ferrarais pour je ne sçay quel I hate Ferrara for who knows what vice,vice, the Lombards’ unreliability;Je hay tous les Lombards pour linﬁdélité, Napolitano swank and vanity,Le ﬁer Napolitain pour sa grand vanité, the shirking Roman’s lack of exercise;Et le poltron romain pour son peudexercice. the cocky Englishman, the plucky Scot, the Spanish snob and the Teutonic sot,Je hay lAnglais mutin et le brave Ecossais, blundering French, perﬁdious Burgundy:Le traître Bourguignon et lindiscret All nations have some fault that I abhor;François,Le superbe Espaignol et lyvrongne I hate my own imperfect self still more;Thudesque: but what I hate the most is pedantry.Bref, je hay quelque vice en chasquenation, Translated by Timothy Adès.
Willis Barnstone, ‘An ABC of Translation’See also Willis Barnstone, The Poetics of Translation, History, Theory, Practice,Yale, 1993
‘The poet, immersed in the movement of language, inconstant verbal preoccupation, chooses a few words- or ischosen by them. As he combines them, he constructs hispoem: a verbal object made of irreplaceable andimmovable characters. The translator’s starting point isnot the language in movement that provides the poet’sraw material but the ﬁxed language of the poem. Alanguage congealed yet living. His process is the inverse ofthe poet’s: he is not constructing an unalterable text frommobile characters; instead, he is dismantling the elementsof the text, freeing the signs into circulation, thenreturning them to language.’
‘a liberationist view of translating, becauseit never enters into the vexed question ofwhether a translation is or is not an inferiorcopy of an original. The task of thetranslator is simply a different kind ofwriterly task, and it follows on from theprimary task of reading.’(Susan Bassnett on Paz in Constructing cultures: essays on
‘We may. . .make two assertions: ﬁrstly,that the translation of poetry requires skillin reading every bit as much as skill inwriting. Secondly, that a poem is a text inwhich content and form are inseparable.Because they are inseparable, it ill behovesany translator to try and argue that one or
...What matters in the translation of poetryis that the translator should be so drawninto the poem that he or she then seeks totranspose it creatively, through the pleasuregenerated by reading.
‘An energy is released. So let us followwhere it leads. If a work does not compelus, it is untranslatable.’– Yves Bonnefoy, Translating Poetry
understanding: close analysis of sourceinterpretation: item by item source and targetcreation: making the TL artifact
Ze wacht She waits Ze wacht met oude thee en oude handen, She waits with old tea and old hands,ik hou van haar, maar zonder veel I love her, but without much dorst en heimwee. Liefde is het einde thirst and longing. Love is the endvan een zachte dag, alleen de rode of a soft day, only the red lucht blijft over, de zon is onder. Ze sky remains, the sun has set. Shewacht en met de schemer komt de kat. waits and as dusk falls the cat comes. Hij duwt zijn koude rug tegen haar He presses his cold back against herhanden, hands,niet om haar, maar om zijn vacht. not because of her, but for his fur.Rutger Kopland
Ze wacht She waitsZe wacht met oude thee en oude handen, She waits with cooling tea and ageingik hou van haar, maar zonder veel hands, I love her, yes, but not with muchdorst en heimwee. Liefde is het eindevan een zachte dag, alleen de rode thirst or longing. Love is the end of a quiet day, only the red in the skylucht blijft over, de zon is onder. Zewacht en met de schemer komt de kat. remains, the sun has set. She waits and with the twilight comes the cat.Hij duwt zijn koude rug tegen haarhanden, He thrusts his chilly back against herniet om haar, maar om zijn vacht. hands, not for her sake, but for his fur’s.Rutger Kopland Translated by James Brockway
Ze wacht She waitsZe wacht met oude thee en oude handen, She waits with cooling tea and ageing hands,ik hou van haar, maar zonder veel I love her, yes, but not with muchdorst en heimwee. Liefde is het einde thirst or longing. Love is the endvan een zachte dag, alleen de rode of a quiet day, only the red in the skylucht blijft over, de zon is onder. Ze remains, the sun has set. She waitswacht en met de schemer komt de kat. and with the twilight comes the cat.Hij duwt zijn koude rug tegen haar handen, He thrusts his chilly back against her hands,niet om haar, maar om zijn vacht. not for her sake, but for his fur’s.Rutger Kopland Translated by James Brockway
‘Translating Kopland’s poetry into English has becomea habit for me and is not as easy or as difficult as itmay seem, provided one remembers to pay closeattention to cadence and never to attempt to stray offon one’s own. It is a poetry utterly devoid of rhetoric,which poses questions without supplying answers, asKopland believes poetry must do. Unless, of course,the reader discovers those answers in the course of hisreading. It is a poetry that has always been written in asimple language that is not simple at all, but oftenleaves one guessing. A Kopland poem is instantlyrecognizable as a Kopland poem. It is international,Dutch and English at the same time, and even whenanecdotal, universal in its themes. Gradually, as thework has progressed over the years, a bond has grownbetween the two of us which has become a source ofspiritual riches and which has enriched my life.’
TirisSi llegas alguna veza una tierra lisa y blancaacompañada de inmensas estatuas negrasy el andar pasivo de camellos y beduinos,recuerda que existe una tierra sin amo y sin dueñoespejo y alma de todo ser inocente.
Literal versionTiris TirisSi llegas alguna vez If you ever arrivea una tierra lisa y blanca to a white and wide landacompañada de inmensas estatuas coupled with immense black statuesnegras and the passive pace of camels andy el andar pasivo de camellos y beduinos, Bedouins,recuerda que existe una tierra sin amo y remember that there exists a landsin dueño withoutespejo y alma de todo ser inocente. master and without owner,Ali Salem Iselmu mirror and soul of all innocent beings. Translation by Lucy Frankel and Antonio
Literal version Final TranslationTiris TirisIf you ever arrive If you ever cometo a white and wide land to a wide, white landcoupled with immense black statues dotted with towering black statuesand the passive pace of camels and crossed by the slow tracks of camels andBedouins, Bedouin ―remember that there exists a land remember there exists a land with nowithout master master and and no owner,without owner, the mirror and the soul of all innocentmirror and soul of all innocent beings. people.Translation by Lucy Frankel and Antonio Translation By: Sarah MaguireMartínez Arboleda.
‘The translation process has three stages. First we look at theoriginal poem: even if most of us can’t understand a word, it’salways important to hear its music, and to look at how the poethas placed it on the page. Secondly, the language expertproduces a literal translation that’s as close to the original aspossible. And ﬁnally, there’s the long and detailed negotiationthat ends with the translated poem.The workshops begin with a language expert introducing us tothe original poem, reading it aloud and explaining its culturalcontext. Next we look at the literal translation of the poemtheyve produced for us; this usually sounds very awkward inEnglish since the idea is for it to be as close as possible to theoriginal text.Our aim in the workshops is to transform this into a new poem inEnglish. Arriving at the translated poem involves deploying all the
Translating a Chinese PoemSee e.g. Ezra Pound, CathayArthur Waley,Wai-lim Yip,Eliot Weinberger, ed, The New Directions Anthology of ClassicalChinese Poetry,The Selected Poems of Po Chi-i, translated by David HintonSunﬂower Splendor, Three Thousand Years of Chinese Poetry,edited by Wu-chi Liu and Irving Yucheng Lo, Indiana UniversityPress, 1974
lǐ bái 李白Name of the poet who lived from 701AD to 762李白 AD zì qiǎn自遣 自遣 Name of the poem zì zì对酒不觉暝， 自 reﬂexive pronoun; myself. In Chinese 自 can act落花盈我衣。 as a subject, such as I, but contains the meaning of myself.醉起步溪月， qiǎn鸟还人亦稀。 遣 intransitive verb in this sentence, amuse,kill time, have some fun
duì jiǔ bù jué mínɡ 对酒不觉暝李白 duì 对 verb, literally means face toward, confront. In this自遣 sentence, the meaning should be having, drinking jiǔ对酒不觉暝， 酒 noun, wine, any beverage with alcohol落花盈我衣。 bù 不 negative word, not醉起步溪月， jué鸟还人亦稀。 觉 verb, be aware of mínɡ 暝 noun, dusk
luò huā yínɡ wǒ yī 落花盈我衣李白 luò 落 verb, fall自遣 huā 花 noun,ﬂower对酒不觉暝， yínɡ落花盈我衣。 盈 verb,be full of, be ﬁlled with醉起步溪月， wǒ鸟还人亦稀。 我 personal pronoun, I yī 衣 noun, upper garment, top
zuì qǐ bù xī yuè李白 醉起步溪月 zuì自遣 醉 adjective, drunk[唐]李白 qǐ 起 verb, stand up对酒不觉暝， bù落花盈我衣。 步 verb, take a walk, go for a walk醉起步溪月， xī鸟还人亦稀。 溪 noun, water steams, brook yuè 月 noun, moon
李白自遣对酒不觉暝， Face wine not aware get dark Fall ﬂower ﬁll my clothes落花盈我衣。 Drunk stand step stream moon Bird far person also few醉起步溪月，鸟还人亦稀。
李白自遣 Face wine not aware get dark Fall ﬂower ﬁll my clothes Drunk stand step stream moon Bird far person also few对酒不觉暝，落花盈我衣。 Facing my wine, I did not see the dusk, Falling blossoms have ﬁlled the folds of my clothes. Drunk, I rise and approach the moon in the stream,醉起步溪月， Birds are far off, people too are few.鸟还人亦稀。
Enjoying the time by myself李白 Spending some time by myself wine-tasting Sunset reminds me time goes by in a blink of an eye自遣 When I tipsily get up to go for a walk I realized ﬂower petals have decorated my top with the color of nature After reaching the brook对酒不觉暝， Only the reﬂection of the moon is my company All the birds have returned to their nests落花盈我衣。 Hardly anyone could be seen Translated by Xiaoyu Wen醉起步溪月，鸟还人亦稀。
To Amuse Myself Drinking alone with knowing the coming of dusk,李白 I discover my robe covered with falling petals. Drunk, I rise to walk along the moonlit creek – The birds have gone and few are the people around.自遣 Tr. Joseph J. Lee (Sunﬂower Splendor, Three Thousand Years of Chinese Poetry)对酒不觉暝， SELF-ABANDONMENT落花盈我衣。 I sat drinking and did not notice the dusk, Till falling petals ﬁlled the folds of my dress.醉起步溪月， Drunken I rose and walked to the moonlit stream; The birds were gone, and men also few.鸟还人亦稀。 (Arthur Waley)
Li Po in 1909 (L Cranmer-Byng)And now Spring beckons with verdant hand,And Nature’s wealth of eloquence doth winForth to the fragrant-bowered nectarine,Where my dear friends abide, a careless band.then comes Ezra Pound, Cathay, 1915,
‘. . . classical Chinese poetry was only successfully translated intoEnglish when the translators were willing to set aside the rhymes andmeters of traditional English verse, as well as Western concepts of whatconstitutes poetic diction and subject matter, and create a freer formthat would permit the power and expressiveness of the originals to shinethrough.’Burton Watson, Introduction to Columbia Book of Chinese Poetry,pp12/13
Reaction to PoundWi-lim Yip, in Ezra Pounds Cathay, admitted‘One can easily excommunicate Pound from the Forbidden City ofChinese studies’yet Pound conveyed ‘the central concerns of the original author" andthat no other translation “has assumed so interesting and unique aposition as Cathay in the history of English translations of Chinesepoetry.”In The Pound Era, Hugh Kenner pointed out that Cathay was aninterpretation as much as a translation; the "poems paraphrase anelegiac war poetry.... among the most durable of all poetic responses toWorld War I."Perhaps the clearest assessment of Pounds achievement was made atthe time by T. S. Eliot in his introduction to Pound’s Selected Poems; hecalled Pound ‘the inventor of Chinese poetry for our time’ and predictedthat Cathay would be called a ‘magniﬁcent specimen of twentieth-century poetry’ rather than a translation.
Li Po/Li BaiA Letter To Send Far AwayMy love, So much beauty home–ﬂowers ﬁlled the When you were here there was house. a hall of ﬂowers. So much beauty gone–nothing but theWhen you are gone there is empty bed, an empty bed.Under the embroidered coverlet your embroidered quilt rolled up, never I toss and turn. used.After three years I It’s been three years. Your scent still smell your fragrance. lingers,Your fragrance never leaves,But you never return. your scent gone and yet never ending.I think of you, the yellow leaves are But now you’re gone, never to return,endedAnd the white dew dampens the green thoughts of you yellow leaves falling,moss. white dew glistening on green moss.Translated by William Carlos Williams Translated by David Hinton
Wang Wei, ‘Deer enclosure’空山不見人 Empty hills, no one in sight,但聞人語響 only the sound of someone talking;返景入深林 late sunlight enters the deep wood,復照青苔上 shining over the green moss again.
Empty mountains: no one to be seen.Yet – hear – human sounds and echoes.Returning sunlight enters the dark woods;Again shining on the green moss, above.Gary Snyder, 1978
Now for Peter Boodberg’s version, which Weinberger likens to “GerardManley Hopkins on LSD”:The empty mountain: to see no men,Barely earminded of men talking – countertones,And antistrophic lights – and – shadows incoming deeper the deep-treedgroveOnce more to glowlight the blue-green mosses – going up (the emptymountain…)(Eliot Weinberger, Nineteen ways of looking at Wang Wei: how a Chinesepoem is translated, 1987)