Posts Tagged ‘Hendrik van Blerk gedig’

John Ashbery. Vertaling in Afrikaans

Tuesday, April 21st, 2020

 

John Ashbery vertaling uit Engels in Afrikaans. Vert. deur Hendrik van Blerk

 

Landbougereedskap en Koolrape in ‘n Landskap

 

Een ongedekodeerde boodskap lees toe: “Popeye sit in donderweer,

Onverwag. Uit daardie skoendoos vir ‘n woonstel,

Uit die doodsblou getinte gordyn, rys ‘n tangram: ‘n plaas.”

Intussen het die Sea Hag op ‘n groen sofa ontspan: “Te mooi,

‘n vakansietjie en la casa de Popeye,” en gekrap

Aan die haar op haar gesplete ken. Sy dag spinasie

 

En was oppad om Wimpy te vra vir ‘n bietjie spinasie

“Skatlam,” keer hy, “die velde lê vandag in donderweer,

Bedek, en jou wil sal geskied.” Hy’t gekrap

Aan sy kop onder sy hoed. Dit lyk of die woonstel

Toe kleiner krimp. “Maar hoe dan as daar geen mooi

Inspirasie ons nou sterrewaarts stort nie? Want dit is my plaas.”

 

Skielik onthou hulle hoe alles goedkoper was op die plaas.

Wimpy was sorgsaam aan die oopsny van ‘n nommer-2 blik spinasie

Toe die deur oopswaai en Swee’pea binnekruip. “Hoe mooi!”

Swee’pea lyk nors; ‘n nota aan sy bef gespeld. “Donderweer

En trane is tevergeefs,” lees dit. “Voortaan sal Popeye se woonstel

Slegs herdenkte ruimte wees, giftig of gesond, heel of gekrap.”

 

Olive kom kletterend die venster deur; haar lang dy gekrap

Deur die malvas. “Ek’t nuus!” hyg sy. “Popeye, gedwing soos jy weet, om van die plaas

Te vlug een muwwe rukwindnag, soos bekonkel deur sy verplooide,

Skynvader, jaloers op die woonstel

En als daarin, die uwe en spinasie

Meer bepaald, hef bliksemstrale teer donderweer

Teen sy eie verwonderde wording, en verbreek die mooi

 

Arpeggio van ons jare. Voortaan sal mooi

Strale van die son nóg die mosloof en stamme wat gekrap

is, nóg jou oudwordsin verfris, slegs suiwer duisternis en donderweer.”

Sy gryp vir Swee’pea. “Hierdie snuiter hoort op die plaas.”

“Dit mag jy nie doen nie – hy eet dan nog sy spinasie,”

Dring die Sea Hag aan, terwyl sy angstig omkyk na die woonstel.

 

Maar Olive was toe reeds buite hoorafstand. Nou swig die woonstel

Voor ‘n vreemde nuwe stilte. “Wrintie waar, dit is heel mooi

Hier,” dag die Sea Hag. “As dit al gevaar is wat spinasie

Inhou, oor en uit. Miskien kan ons Alice the Goon oornooi” – sy’t peinsend gekrap

Aan ‘n tepel – “maar ‘n regte japie van die plaas

Daai Wimpy, breek ewig winde.” Eers klein, vul die donderweer

 

Toe spoedig die woonstel. Dis huislike donderweer,

Gekleur net soos spinasie. Popeye het gekrap,

Aan sy knaters, gelag: Tog te mooi so ‘n dag op die plaas.

 

 

Farm Implements and Rutabagas in a Landscape

John Ashbery

 

The first of the undecoded messages read: “Popeye sits in thunder,

Unthought of. From that shoebox of an apartment,

From livid curtain’s hue, a tangram emerges: a country.”

Meanwhile the Sea Hag was relaxing on a green couch: “How pleasant

To spend one’s vacation en la casa de Popeye,” she scratched

Her cleft chin’s solitary hair. She remembered spinach

 

And was going to ask Wimpy if he had bought any spinach.

“M’love,” he intercepted, “the plains are decked out in thunder

Today, and it shall be as you wish.” He scratched

The part of his head under his hat. The apartment

Seemed to grow smaller. “But what if no pleasant

Inspiration plunge us now to the stars? For this is my country.”

 

Suddenly they remembered how it was cheaper in the country.

Wimpy was thoughtfully cutting open a number 2 can of spinach

When the door opened and Swee’pea crept in. “How pleasant!”

But Swee’pea looked morose. A note was pinned to his bib. “Thunder

And tears are unavailing,” it read. “Henceforth shall Popeye’s apartment

Be but remembered space, toxic or salubrious, whole or scratched.”

 

Olive came hurtling through the window; its geraniums scratched

Her long thigh. “I have news!” she gasped. “Popeye, forced as you know to flee the country

One musty gusty evening, by the schemes of his wizened, duplicate father, jealous of the apartment

And all that it contains, myself and spinach

In particular, heaves bolts of loving thunder

At his own astonished becoming, rupturing the pleasant

 

Arpeggio of our years. No more shall pleasant

Rays of the sun refresh your sense of growing old, nor the scratched

Tree-trunks and mossy foliage, only immaculate darkness and thunder.”

She grabbed Swee’pea. “I’m taking the brat to the country.”

“But you can’t do that—he hasn’t even finished his spinach,”

Urged the Sea Hag, looking fearfully around at the apartment.

 

But Olive was already out of earshot. Now the apartment

Succumbed to a strange new hush. “Actually it’s quite pleasant

Here,” thought the Sea Hag. “If this is all we need fear from spinach

Then I don’t mind so much. Perhaps we could invite Alice the Goon over”—she scratched

One dug pensively—“but Wimpy is such a country

Bumpkin, always burping like that.” Minute at first, the thunder

 

Soon filled the apartment. It was domestic thunder,

The color of spinach. Popeye chuckled and scratched

His balls: it sure was pleasant to spend a day in the country.

 

 

John Ashbery, “Farm Implements and Rutabagas in a Landscape” from The Double Dream of Spring. Copyright © 1966, 1970 by John Ashbery. Herdruk met die toestemming van Georges Borchardt, Inc. Namens die digter.

Bron: The Mooring of Starting Out: The First Five Books of Poetry (Ecco Press, 1997), 260-261.

 

 

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