Louis Esterhuizen. Het jy al jou Tranströmer-versameling aangevul?

Verlede jaar is die vreugdevure omtrent hoog gestook toe die Sweedse Akademie bekend gemaak het dat die Nobelprys vir letterkunde aan die Sweedse digter Tomas Tranströmer (foto) toegeken word. En binne enkele ure na dié bekendmaking, is die enkele kopieë van Tranströmer se vertaalde poësie wat ‘n bepaalde boekwinkel in Stellenbosch beskikbaar gehad het, uitverkoop. Summier het dié winkel egter nagevors watter vertaalde werke wel nog beskikbaar was en bestel.

Dié versameling van drie titels het nou pas gearriveer en graag gebruik ek dus dié ruimte om dit onder alle poësieliefhebbers se aandag te bring.

Omslag

Omslag

Die een wat ek ten sterkste kan aanbeveel, is The Great Enigma – New Collected Poems (2006: New Directions Books) wat deur Robin Fulton saamgestel en vertaal is. Fulton se vertalings lees uiters gemaklik en toon ‘n heerlike besonderse gevoeligheid ten opsigte van ritme en klank; soos dit ‘n knap vertaler betaam.

Volgens die flapteks, die volgende: “Translated into fifty languages, the poetry of Tomas Tranströmer has had a profound influence around the world, an influence that has steadily grown and has now attained a prominence comparable to that of Pablo Neruda’s during his lifetime. But if Neruda is blazing fire, Tranströmer is expanding ice. The Great Enigma: New Collected Poems gathers all the poems Tomas Tranströmer has published, from his distinctive first collection in 1954, 17 Poems, through his epic poem Baltics (“my most consistent attempt to write music”), and The Sad Gondola, published six years after he suffered a debilitating stroke in 1990 (“I am carried in my shadow / like a violin / in its black case.”), to his most recent slim book, The Great Enigma, published in Sweden in 2004. Also included is his prose-memoir Memories Look at Me, containing keys into his intensely spiritual, metaphysical poetry (like the brief passage of insect collecting on Runmaro Island when he was a teenager). Firmly rooted in the natural world, his work falls between dream and dream; it probes “the great unsolved love” with the opening up, through subtle modulations, of ‘concrete words’.”

The Great Enigma beslaan 262 bladsye (met ‘n omvattende voorwoord) en is ‘n ‘moet hê’ teen R249.50 … Beslis die koop werd, myns insiens.

Omslag

Omslag

Die tweede boek waarvan voorraad ontvang is, is The Half-finished Heaven – The Best Poems of Tomas Tranströmer (2001: Graywolf Press) wat deur die bekende vertaler Robert Bly byeengebring en vertaal is. Alhoewel Bly se vertalings na alle waarskynlikheid net so goed soos Fulton s’n is, vind ek dit tog jammer dat dié versameling nie al die “ekstras” bied wat The Great Enigma het nie. So ontbreek ‘n alfabetiese indeks van titels en is die keuse van gedigte ook minder verteenwoordigend. Tog het ek Robert Bly se Inleiding, “Upward into the Depths” as oorsig van Tranströmer se digkuns uitstekend gevind.

As aptytwekker die volgende aanhaling: “The contemporary Swedish poet Tomas Tranströmer has a prestigious worldwide reputation; many expect that he will someday win the Nobel Prize for Literature. Robert Bly, a longtime friend and confidant of Tranströmer’s, as well as one of his first translators, has carefully chosen and translated the finest of Tranströmer ‘s poems to create this cherished and invaluable collection. “

The Half-finished Heaven se verkoopsprys is R209.50 en beslaan 98 bladsye; ‘n boek wat besonder mooi uitgegee is, maar as ‘winskopie’ heelwat minder bied as The Great Enigma, myns insiens.

Omslag

Omslag

Die derde titel wat ek graag wil noem, die die uitgewery Green Integer se sakgrootte uitgawe van The Sorrow Gondola (2010); Tranströmer se voorlaaste bundel (1996: Sorgegondolen) wat met die Sweedse teks en Engelse vertaling deur Michael McGriff en Mikaela Grassl uitgegee is: “The Sorrow Gondola is the first collection of poetry Tranströmer completed after the debilitating stroke he suffered in 1990. Since its publication, it has sold over 30,000 copies in Sweden alone. This new bilingual edition offers North American readers Tranströmer’s seminal work for the first time as a single volume.” (Aldus die flapteks.)

Soos reeds vermeld is hierdie tweetalige bundel in kleinformaat (71 bladsye) met ‘n verkoopprys van R150.00.

Dus – indien jy van voorneme is om jou volgende steak & chips eerder ten gunste van ‘n Tranströmer-versameling te versaak, kan jy gerus met ‘n bepaalde boekwinkel op Stellenbosch kontak maak deur (021) 882 9100 te skakel, of ‘n e-pos te stuur na ls.protea@mweb.co.za. Maar, let asseblief daarop dat dié beperkte voorraad direk van ‘n oorsese verskaffer bestel is en derhalwe ietwat duurder is as die boeke wat later vanjaar deur Book Promotions, ‘n plaaslike verskaffer, aan Suid-Afrikaanse boekwinkels beskikbaar gestel gaan word.

Vir jou leesplesier volg een van die gedigte wat deur Robert Fulton vertaal is.

***

SOLITARY SWEDISH HOUSES

A mix-max of black spruce
and smoking moonbeams.
Here’s the croft lying low
and not a sign of life.

Till the morning dew murmurs
and an old man opens
– with a shaky hand – his window
and lets out an owl.

Further off, the new building
stands steaming
with the laundry butterfly
fluttering at the corner

in the middle of a dying wood
where the mouldering reads
through spectacles of sap
the proceedings of the bark-drillers.

Summer with flaxen-haired rain
or one solitary thunder-cloud
above a barking dog.
The seed is kicking inside the earth.

Agitated voices, faces
fly in the telephone wires
on stunted rapid wings
across the moorland miles.

The house on an island in the river
brooding on its stony foundations.
Perpetual smoke – they’re burning
the forest’s secret papers.

The rain wheels in the sky.
The light coils in the river.
Houses on the slope supervise
the waterfall’s white oxen.

Autumn with a gang of starlings
holding dawn in check.
The people move stiffly
in the lamplight’s theatre.

Let them feel without alarm
the camouflaged wings
and God’s energy
coiled up in the dark.

 

© Tomas Tranströmer (Vertaal deur: Robin Fulton)

 

 

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