Thursday, 19 March 2015


Nigh unto disproving my own thesis in the former post on the impossibility of truly translating a lyrical poem I did just that.
Having chosen a Dutch poem of my own, in accord with the season, I translated it into English and, to myself, I must admit it’s hardly different, same imagery, same rhyme scheme, power of expression hardly less, if at all, though words seem dancing to the quirks of a new puppetmaster.


Easter has come and Spring is roaring
Offices empty into sidewalk cafes
Still in wintry wraps absorbing

Sunlight broke through glasses raised
When White beer chinks with ruby port
A toast to new life highly praised

Dying to thrive it yet withholds...
Skies blue, bare trees, soil still black
Until Love’s warmth again be back

The original, written in April, 2001, I present here for comparison.

Weer werd het Pasen en de lente brult
Kantoren stromen leeg in een terras
En absorberen nog in winterjas gehuld

Zonlicht brak door glas geheven
Als Wiekse Witte klinkt met rode port
Op het nieuwe leven.

Het wil eruit, maar houdt nog even in
Strakke lucht, kale takken, zwarte grond
Tot de warme liefde komt

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