Saturday, February 20, 2010

TENDERNESS

Tenderness - is like a cry full of war;
And like the current of whispering springs,
And like a funeral march...

*

And like a long plait of golden hair
On which a widower wears
A silver watch - - -

(A riddle: who wrote these strophes ?)


4 comments:

  1. Anonymous5:29 AM

    "Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your long hair," a long golden plait of hair fell almost to the ground.

    ReplyDelete
  2. :-)

    no it is not from Brothers Grimm - if that was what you wanted to say....

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  3. Cyprian Norwid (1821-1883)

    FEELINGS


    Feelings - are like a cry full of war,
    And like the current of whispering springs,
    And like a funeral march...

    *

    And like a long plait of blond hair
    On which a widower wears
    A silver watch - - -

    ############

    I confess, I had help from Google. (Is that cheating?) But then I learned something, at least. Here is where I found it:
    NOT LOST IN TRANSLATION by Adam Czerniawski in the Toronto Slavic Quarterly.

    The article includes some thoughts on the difficulties in translating poetry. And,we see "Tenderness" replaced by "Feelings" in this translation. To me they are very different...which one did the poet mean?
    It does leave one wondering whether "every translation of poetry is necessarily a failure"...what do you think?

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  4. Hard to say. Indeed.
    My opinion is even more stern - I find poetry as completely untranslatable.

    The original title is "czułość" - it is a noun. The adjective of it "czule" is applied to the way a lover talks, sees, touches his partner. There is another adjective "czuły" (masculine) and "czuła" (feminine) - and they describe (as adjective) the mindset of the person in realtion to the partner.

    Thus, to me, Tenderness is better, because we
    have "tander" and "tenderly" that seem to mean the same as their Polish counter parts.

    However, this poem is about ... post-mortem tenderness, so I do not find "Feeling" as entirely bad....

    Well - all that proves the poetry is untranslatable ...

    Thanks for finding it - it is not cheating at all....

    Greetings from Krakow/Kazimierz - the epicenter of Polish & Jewish history...

    ReplyDelete