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  • Herbert Nehrlich1 (9/17/2005 7:32:00 PM) Post reply | Read 1 reply Stage

    Here is a bit of Rilke, one version.
    IV. Sonett
    O dieses ist das Tier, das es nicht giebt.
    Sie wußtens nicht und habens jeden Falls
    - sein Wandeln, seine Haltung, seinen Hals,
    bis in des stillen Blickes Licht - geliebt.

    Zwar war es nicht. Doch weil sie's liebten, ward
    ein reines Tier. Sie ließen immer Raum.
    Und in dem Raume, klar und ausgespart,
    erhob es leicht sein Haupt und brauchte kaum

    zu sein. Sie nährten es mit keinem Korn,
    nur immer mit der Möglichkeit, es sei.
    Und die gab solche Stärke an das Tier,

    daß es aus sich ein Stirnhorn trieb. Ein Horn.
    Zu einer Jungfrau kam es weiß herbei -
    und war im Silber-Spiegel und in ihr.

    Ah, here it is, the creature without life
    They could not know but did just to be sure
    Admire, love, its features so alive
    Into the depth of stillness to endure
    Though it was not an animal to love
    Yet had become one in that inner room
    Where it stood out to raise its head above
    Itself, she nourished it not with a single corn
    But always with the thought that it could be
    And thus a strength formidable defied all doom
    To grow from deep within its forehead’s own
    A growth into its world, a unicorn.
    Within the silver mirror it was plain to see
    White, inside the maiden it had grown.

    Replies for this message:
    • Michael Shepherd (9/18/2005 5:16:00 AM) Post reply Stage

      you hit on the poem that launched my 'unicorn' series, remembered after 50 years...

  • Max Reif (9/17/2005 1:57:00 PM) Post reply Stage

    Just posted a long poem entitled, 'IN SEARCH OF MY FATHER AND MYSELF'. A little prosy for some, maybe, but it has a lot of meat in it!

  • Michael Shepherd (9/17/2005 8:29:00 AM) Post reply Stage

    I was this very minute going to post to you, Sherrie, and all, what a magnificent work and a scrupulously loving translation this is, from 1996..for Europeans at least, he is the poet's poet, and every line is for me like a self-dedication...

  • Nathaniel Jarvis (9/17/2005 12:25:00 AM) Post reply | Read 2 replies Stage

    Dear Herbert:

    I have been called in to set something straight. Apparently you are having a fun time bashing some poetry on this site that you think to be atrocious and even more atrociously translated into your native language.

    Before you know the backround of a thing you should be very hesitant about what you say, and particularly what you propose to advertise about it. It is one thing to speak directly to the persons involved and it is another thing to inspire a mob scene.

    I will give you some background to provide you some lost perspective. The poems you are criticizing belong to a collection that were inspired by beautiful valley in the Black Forest, and though written in English, were very tightly linked to the language and culture of that area. To make the poetry more accessible to the people where we live, Marcy decided to have them translated and called in a native German speaker (professional translator) , and myself with many years experience of academic and practical study of the language.

    If you find a problem with any of the poems and their translations it would be much more constructive for you to make a suggestion or a 'better' translation if you are able, rather than low level commentary. Any attempt at multi-cultural cross-over should be praised and encouraged.

    Replies for this message:
    • Marcy Jarvis (9/19/2005 12:12:00 AM) Post reply Stage

      I'm extremely grateful to you, Nat, and to my friend Dorothee, for translating the Poems of the Zinsbachtal. They have more meaning to me when I can read the two languages side by side and working tog ... more

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  • Jerry Hughes (9/16/2005 7:27:00 PM) Post reply Stage

    Spot on Sherrie, Poetry is a beautifully written poem.

  • Herbert Nehrlich1 (9/16/2005 5:15:00 PM) Post reply | Read 2 replies Stage

    On the topic of language. How do you convince a person who writes poems in her native tongue and adds a translation into a language she has not at all mastered?
    It hurts my ears and gives me a toothache to have my native tongue so 'mutilated'.
    I have lived in the English speaking world for some time yet find that on many occasions I am at a loss of how to properly express a thought.So I know about the problem.
    Apparently she either does not or wants to give the impression to those who are not familiar with both languages that she is soooooo brilliant.
    This is not meant as an ad hominem barb by the way.
    Any ideas?

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  • Max Reif (9/16/2005 3:29:00 PM) Post reply | Read 2 replies Stage

    Hunters & gatherers,

    I received an e-mail searching for the complete text of this old rhyme:

    My father use to recite a poem, but I only know a few lines....'The countries are few that i haven't been through...I sailed every sea on the map. I journeyed to Rome, called Cairo my home.'

    Anyone know? Any of you Brits, maybe?

    Replies for this message:
    • Michael Shepherd (9/16/2005 3:59:00 PM) Post reply Stage

      or.. is it an old music-hall song, like My Old Dutch? Then it would be the verse before the chorus '..but there isn't a lye-dee (lady) in the whole wide world..' (voice quavers...)

    • Michael Shepherd (9/16/2005 3:39:00 PM) Post reply | Read 1 reply Stage

      Sorry. Max... it could be one of those poems that simply sing the praises of the old home at Little Shrinkingham... or it could be the first verse of one of those Rudyard Kipling poems that expand int ... more

  • Michael Shepherd (9/16/2005 5:55:00 AM) Post reply | Read 3 replies Stage

    I'd propose that there's a curious affinity between the careful, respectful use of words and that of money. Then charity takes its rightful place in both currencies.

    Replies for this message:
    • Michael Shepherd (9/16/2005 1:34:00 PM) Post reply Stage

      I meant charity as in love-and-charity rather than 'organised' charities. One of the privileges of being retired on our miniscule state pension here (taxable of course...) is that one can instead give ... more

    • Poetry Hound (9/16/2005 9:43:00 AM) Post reply | Read 2 replies Stage

      Charities are like any other kind of institution. Some are good and some are bad. Dismissing all, or even most of them, as being corrupt is ignorant.

    To read all of 3 replies click here
  • Laura Cummings (9/16/2005 4:35:00 AM) Post reply | Read 1 reply Stage

    New artist on the block people. Gaia Moore, kinda raw in a teenage way me thinks: P

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    • Poetry Hound (9/16/2005 5:43:00 AM) Post reply Stage

      Seems like pretty standard cliche stuff - 'tied up in knots.' What do you find original about her?

  • Poetry Snob (aka Jefferson Carter) (9/15/2005 7:37:00 PM) Post reply | Read 1 reply Stage

    Michael, I've logged on as Snob, pointlessly. To answer your question about my students attitude toward rhyme, it's the usual. Since they haven't read any contemporary poetry, they think Poe is the cat's pjs and Longfellow is a great poet. Once I've exposed them to such good poets as Kate Daniels, Marvin Bell, Gary Snyder, Marie Howe, etc., on their own they'll decide there's a lot more to poetry than rhyme. My mantra: rhyme's easy to do badly and hard to do well. JC

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    • Michael Shepherd (9/16/2005 5:48:00 AM) Post reply Stage

      If they like Longfellow, have they read Lewis Carroll on Hiawatha's photography, in seven instalments? It's a riot and on this site...

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