20 ene. 2006

Can of Corn: This is so right 1.20.2006. I hope "can of corn" knew that I was saying the exact opposite of what I think. It's pretty obvious, but then again I am not sure if he is saying "right,"that's the opposite of what I think too," or "that's what I think>."

7 comentarios:

JWG dijo...
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JWG dijo...

Was thinking about a few lines in my comment (sorry for posting two), reading them again, realizing they didn?t say what I wanted to say.

When we (I) write a poem, words come up, and I don?t know from where, and sometimes they stick around until all the editing is done. in translation we seem to have an outline, but there is plenty of room for play in the middle. There needs to be a melding. a gentle tug of poet and translator until the poem reads well in the language into which it was translated.

Words don?t even translate from person to person in the same language. Not saying we shouldn?t try to convey meaning through similar words (especially when we are dealing with languages as close as Spanish and English.), but the meaning, why the poem necessitated translation, that must remain, and for that to remain, some of the original poet?s games must (sometimes) be dropped.

I think a translator needs to trust her/his poetic instinct and use it. If a poem you are translating strays too far from what you want to do, maybe it is a poem best translated by another person. If a translator understands the poem, none of these rules matter, and if they don?t, there are no rules which could make the translation work.

Jonathan dijo...

You're making things too complicated. When Blackburn destroys Lorca simple parellelism "La mar no tiene naranjas / ni Sevilla tiene amor," there is no excuse for this. It's wtf translation. That's not some poetic "game" irrelevant to the poem, but the basic way in which the poem works. To think there's some essential meaning more important than this, that's better captured by--

"Oranges / do not grow in the sea / anymore than there's love in Sevilla."

JWG dijo...

The ocean does not have oranges
nor Seville, love

The ocean does not
have oranges nor Seville

but I don?t know Spanish like I should. Is that above translation Blackburn?s? It doesn?t work on any level. The language, the breaks, what was said.

Something gets thrown out in translation. Decisions need to be made. Just seems that the form is often times so tied to the original language in rhyme, meter, and syllable, that leaving it out of the translation helps the translation to exist as a poem, and not as a translation.

Thanks for the earlier reply.

Have you thought about posting a poem you?ve translated from Spanish (original and yr translation) on yr blog and having other people come by and try their hand at it? Might be fun.

JWG dijo...

Read more of yr blog, it was Blackburn. Liked him plenty in school. still like him now. But that is some ugly stuff. What happens to a poet?s ability when he tries his hand at translation? Why did this sloppiness come forth from an otherwise good poet?

But I am curious about something different. You?ve given me an example of Blackburn stinking it up bc he just threw away everything the poet had written. nothing remains. what about translations that fail because everything i.e.: form, diction, pacing etc. (except what it was that made it great) remains. I am interested in the greatness of the poem. That is what I want to come across. In the end it is a collaboration and the translator and poet deserve credit for it, whereas when it stinks, only the translator is to blame.

If it works I don?t ask how close it was to the original and I don?t prefer another poem to it simply because this other poem kept more devices.

Jonathan dijo...

Good question. I'd have to say that it it had a lot of what was in the orginal poem, and still failed, it would still be a good translation, a good entry into the original. It would have some value as sheer INFORMATION even if we judged it a failure as a poem.

JWG dijo...

Thanks Jonathan.