Breyten Breytenbach. Vertaling in Engels

Breyten Breytenbach. Translated to English by / vert. deur Waldemar Gouws

 

(n)oneness

“Move on!”[1] : Breyten Breytenbach

 

You will see, dear reader (have seen and read)

that for long I’ve been trying to turn so many seasons and years and cycles

into poetry

to set up a description or experience

(to kiss and to bless)

that could have been on a par with this world

 

O, not of the same kind – for inherently

something else subject to processes peculiar

to the nature of that other foot rule – writing –

and even less as gloss or fleeciness to cover that

(the fish of a different flesh)

which begs description

 

However, then rather a membrane to convey

the throbbing faithfully: to live

is really very much like living

en route to degeneration, obscuration, substitution, oblivion

 

So: not to pass off words

on whatever vibrates within or outside around you,

also not as addition to the all-around

which is without early or late or any jointing,

what is is not

 

But to learn to move. To tremble

at first light. To know (clarify)

nothing explains the bird’s piping

because it is already completely clear.

To help prevent that the again and again

not merely constitutes the multiplication of folly:

 

Disintegration really happens to be the only defence

against mortality.

 

And then to sift through the words every night

for the sake of the overriding knowledge that everything

is nonpresence

and to know you are living alongside your own

survival like a spot of shadow in the dark

 

All journeys have a beginning: even though

the final one has no end

 

Until the squall arrives or the sun splits

and you, stripped of all appearance and being, realize

it was of no avail,

the writing a fluttering

of which broken-winged birds dream,

no hem on the seamless garment

of what was lived through,

my writing that couldn’t even stir a leaf

or make a lizard sing

 

O reader – now isn’t it liberating

to could have lived for nothing

in the never-ending silent moving?

 

(c) Tr. by Waldemar Gouws / 2015 of the unpublished poem “(n)oneness” by Breyten Breytenbach

 

 



[1] Title in English in the original, tr.

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2 Kommentare op “Breyten Breytenbach. Vertaling in Engels”

  1. Maria Snyman :

    Wonderlik Waldemar! Nou kan miljoene meer mense hierdie gedig van Breyten – wat nog nie opgehou spook het by my nie – lees. Dit voel of gaan stilstaan het by daardie “Maar om te leer beweeg. Te bewe” [“But to learn to move. To tremble”] en dan weliswaar, BY laasgenoemde as sulks, OOK met die doel/motief (sagkens bygeteken) om “Te help keer dat die weer en weer / nie net ‘n meervoudiging van dwaasheid is nie:” [“To help prevent that the again and again / not merely constitutes the multiplication of folly”]. (En waar elkeen dit op ‘n manier net vir hom/haarself kan doen?? oneness = noneness??)

    Ek wonder oor die volgende alternatiewe: “/is not merely the multiplication of hebetude”??
    “constitutes” is regtig erg (onnodig) en “folly” voel vir my te lig in die broek vir “dwaasheid”. “Hebetude” hou verband met “blunt” wat vir my iets vasvang van die botheid verbonde aan dwaasheid?
    (Vergelyk Krog se laaste woorde in “narratief van klip”: “daardie aand / skep die bot koppe vir die eerste keer lig / anderkant die tabeeboom”)

    En miskien dalk ook, i.p.v. “not to pass off words”, eerder “not to smear off words / on whatever vibrates […]”. “Pass off” klink vir my te “polite”. (“Smear off” is skynbaar nie standaard Engels nie, maar ek kon dit in DJ Quick se “”Trouble (Remix)” kry (skakel: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/djquik/troubleremix.html.)

    Blote eerste, intuïtiewe voorstelle op ‘n gedig wat my stomgeslaan het (en ek dus BAIE bly is jy vertaal het) in die reguit manier waarop ‘n paar moewiese dinge na regte gesê word, en dalk ook aan verskillende groepe mense, d.i. vanaf gewone mense tot literêre kritici en selfs dalk sommige digters ook. Die digter dig “om te leer beweeg” … O hemel, hoe eenvoudig kan dit wees! Dokters doen baie om die lewe beter te maak, maar al wat regtig saak maak is om te weet hoe om (aan) te beweeg, en waaromtrent “gedig” mens dan ook in meer detail vertel. Kortom: Goeie werk, Waldemar.

  2. Waldemar Gouws :

    Beste Maria, baie dankie vir jou geesdrif vir die vertaling. Oor die gepaste woord, die “mot juste” vir sommiges, is die laaste woord lank nie geroep nie. Afhangende van mens se perspektief lyk iets soos die “dwaasheid” nooit dieselfde nie. Ek en jy lyk soos tipiese dwase, terwyl die oordeel van “hebetude” m.i. eerder daardie permanente onbekwame toestand van ‘n kretin of moroon definieer. Nie ouens, soos jy moet erken, wat openlik probeer dig nie.

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