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English translation: Two worlds apart

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19:06 Sep 8, 2006
French to English translations [PRO]
Marketing - Music / song
French term or phrase: quote
This is the introduction to a description of an award given to artistic endeavours that show harmony.
Obviously, a straight translation of this children's song won't mean anything for an English audience. I've been racking my brain trying to find a song or quote in English to get the same idea across - something like an impossible love that finds harmony.

Any ideas are more than welcome!

« Un petit poisson, un petit oiseau, s’aimaient d’amour tendre, mais comment s’y prendre quand on est …là haut ». La recherche du bonheur dépasse parfois les limites de l’impossible, mais l’harmonie est toujours l’art de concilier les extrêmes grâce aux talents qui expriment la plénitude et l’essence des choses.

FYI
Here is the entire song:
Un petit poisson, un petit oiseau
S'aimaient d'amour tendre
Mais comment s'y prendre
Quand on est dans l'eau
Un petit poisson, un petit oiseau
S'aimaient d'amour tendre
Mais comment s'y prendre
Quand on est là-haut

Quand on est là-haut
Perdu aux creux des nuages
On regarde en bas pour voir
Son amour qui nage
Et l'on voudrait bien changer
Ses ailes en nageoires
Les arbres en plongeoir
Le ciel en baignoire

Un petit poisson, un petit oiseau
S'aimaient d'amour tendre
Mais comment s'y prendre
Quand on est là-haut
Un petit poisson, un petit oiseau
S'aimaient d'amour tendre
Mais comment s'y prendre
Quand on est dans l'eau

Quand on est dans l'eau
On veut que vienne l'orage
Qui apporterait du ciel
Bien plus qu'un message
Qui pourrait d'un coup
Changer au cours du voyage
Des plumes en écailles
Des ailes en chandail
Des algues en paille.
French Foodie
Local time: 12:10
English translation:Two worlds apart
Explanation:
A little fish, a little bird
Loved each other past all words
But how can this love ever be
While the fish is in the sea?
How can they their feelings share
While the bird is in the air?

The bird lost in the clouds
Flying through the sky
Looking down below to see
His true love swimming by
He wishes he could trade
His wings for fishy fins
The sky into a pool
A tub for bathing in

The fish below the waves
Would wish the storm to rise
To bring her loneliness
A message from the skies

A word that would take wing
And then its wings would shed
Its feathers become scales
A coat of fishy mail
The mermaid's hair to straw

I don't get the last line, explain it to me and I'll rhyme it.



--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 hrs (2006-09-09 01:01:42 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Thank y'all for your agrees.

'He wishes he could trade' should be 'He wishes he could change'

'A coat of fishy mail' probably wouldn't be understood by very many people...

I'd like to rewrite the last stanza like this:

A word that would take flight
And flying through the sea
Would feathers turn to scales
And water breathing be

Of course, I only translated the repeated lines once.

There would be lots of tunes for that the way it is now.

And of course Mara if this isn't what you wanted I quite understand!

And no I don't know why the bird is the boy and the fish the girl except it just seems right that way...
Selected response from:

Jeffrey Lewis
United States
Local time: 05:10
Grading comment
How could one not award full points for an answer like this?!! Thanks Jeffery.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
1 +8Two worlds apart
Jeffrey Lewis


Discussion entries: 4





  

Answers


54 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 1/5Answerer confidence 1/5 peer agreement (net): +8
Two worlds apart


Explanation:
A little fish, a little bird
Loved each other past all words
But how can this love ever be
While the fish is in the sea?
How can they their feelings share
While the bird is in the air?

The bird lost in the clouds
Flying through the sky
Looking down below to see
His true love swimming by
He wishes he could trade
His wings for fishy fins
The sky into a pool
A tub for bathing in

The fish below the waves
Would wish the storm to rise
To bring her loneliness
A message from the skies

A word that would take wing
And then its wings would shed
Its feathers become scales
A coat of fishy mail
The mermaid's hair to straw

I don't get the last line, explain it to me and I'll rhyme it.



--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 hrs (2006-09-09 01:01:42 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Thank y'all for your agrees.

'He wishes he could trade' should be 'He wishes he could change'

'A coat of fishy mail' probably wouldn't be understood by very many people...

I'd like to rewrite the last stanza like this:

A word that would take flight
And flying through the sea
Would feathers turn to scales
And water breathing be

Of course, I only translated the repeated lines once.

There would be lots of tunes for that the way it is now.

And of course Mara if this isn't what you wanted I quite understand!

And no I don't know why the bird is the boy and the fish the girl except it just seems right that way...


Jeffrey Lewis
United States
Local time: 05:10
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8
Grading comment
How could one not award full points for an answer like this?!! Thanks Jeffery.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Rob Grayson: Chapeau, maître !
52 mins

agree  cocotier: impressionant en effet! Bouche bée...!!! :-O // Inspiré ce soir!
1 hr

agree  Ingeborg Gowans: hey, you are a poet!!
3 hrs

agree  Ian Davies: Well done, Jeffrey!
4 hrs

agree  Michael Barnett: Bravo Jeffrey!
8 hrs

agree  Ioanna Karamanou: Bravissimo! Very nice! (Oh, and the gender assignments "seem right" because most literature and art romanticises mermaids. I mean, i doubt Disney would have made "The Little Merman". Right or wrong, who knows; just the way it is, I guess.)
9 hrs

agree  Natasha Dupuy: Wow! it even gave me shivers. Well done! For the last line I see the paille as representing the bird's nest or home, the seaweed now serves as straw since his home would now be in the bottom of the sea.
21 hrs

agree  Fiorsam: I'm truly impressed!
1 day39 mins
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