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Off topic: Question about TV show "The Water Margin" (水滸傳)
Thread poster: Olaf (X)

chica nueva
Local time: 22:56
Chinese to English
Imagery and poetic devices; Shaan-Bei landscape Mar 27, 2009

pkchan wrote:
慕宏 2005-5-10 19:46
《沁园春·雪》中的“原驰蜡象”
听了此话,若有所悟,再看那塬,果然象个梯形,四边陡顶上平。出差回来便查字典,果然“原”字可以同“塬”。此时再读“原驰蜡象”便有了形象:被积雪覆盖的群塬乍看似一群蜡做的大象,在漫天的雪花中仿佛奔驰而来。


Hello PK

1 That's interesting. So:

'The hills were dancing silver serpents, the promontories/headlands/platforms were charging/roaming wax elephants'?

Like 'The road was a ribbon of moonlight'? There is a name for this device, isn't there.

(BTW 'charge like a wax-hued elephant' 这个说法 reminds me of 'charge like a wounded bull'一个俗话, but that's just me, I guess. )

2 This is what my source says about the North Shaanxi landscape:

Shaanxi Province: Relief:

'The North Shaanxi Plains are situated north of the line of Fengxiang, Tongchuan, and Hancheng. It is the central part of the Loess Plateau; its average height above sea level is 800-1200 metres, and it is comparatively higher in the north-west. The loess is very widely distributed, 50-150 metres thick, and after being cut into by running water, it has formed many typical types of terrain:

platforms, ridges, conical hills, ravines.

North of Fuxian water-erosion is severe and it is a national serious soil erosion region. In the Luochuan area, the platform surfaces have been preserved relatively intact. ...

'Translated from: Cartographical Publishing House, China Atlas, Cartographical Publishing House, Beijing, 1981

陕西省:地形:

陕北高原位于凤翔、铜川、韩城一线以北,是黄土高原的中部,平均海拔800-1200米,西北部较高。黄土广泛分布,厚50-150米,经流水切割,

形成典型的塬、梁、峁、沟壑等多种地形,

富县以北流水侵蚀强烈,是全国水土流失严重地区。罗川一带,塬面保存较完整。...

(地图出版社,《中国地图册》,地图出版社,北京,1981)

[BTW my translations of '峁 mao ' as 'conical hills' and 陕北高原 as North Shaanxi Plain are not accurate. Notes: 塬 yuan = steep-sided, flat-topped, platform-like high points; 梁 liang = ridges; 峁 mao = steep-sided hills with perfectly round tops; 沟壑 gouhe = gullies, ravines ]

Lesley

[Edited at 2009-03-27 04:16 GMT]


 

ysun  Identity Verified
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蹉跎岁月 Mar 27, 2009

wherestip wrote:

Yueyin,

我也不知道清涧县在哪里. 但看这个地图, 延长在延川的南边, 清涧在延川的北边. 所以这几个县的地势应该是差不太多的. 我插队的公社叫安沟, 当年是穷中之穷的地方.

http://www.9654.com/m/yanchuan.htm

Steve,

你提供的链接很有意思,我也找到了当年修地球的地方,宁夏吴忠县中部高糜子湾以东的沙漠里。你看地图上的麻点就可知道那是沙漠。我以前一直没搞清它的确切方位。
http://www.9654.com/m/wuzhong.htm

我在网上查了一下,居然看到还有不少人也像我一样对高糜子湾满怀深情,其中有大学生,也有在那里当过兵的。 下面这篇文章里说的肯定就是我当年所在的部队农场。那个部队造纸厂是我们的4个同学协助兰州第五化建公司设计和建设的。
http://tieba.baidu.com/f?kz=228083468

我看了这篇文章后才知道,1970年春我们两个学生连离开后,还有更多的大学毕业生被送去那里。 当年我们学生连的连长和指导员都是营级干部。连长原来是国军,1945年被俘后参加了解放军,还跨过鸭绿江。他文化程度不高,但说话水平很高,对我们很好。我们自嘲是臭老九,他说,“啥臭老九?我看很香嘛!你们别急,将来国家肯定要派你们大用场”。我还真挺想念他的。


[Edited at 2009-03-27 01:06 GMT]


 

wherestip  Identity Verified
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感谢当年驻陕北的北京干部 Mar 27, 2009

Yueyin,

咱们都有类似苦中有乐的经历. 周总理 于70 年给我们到陕北插队的北京知识青年派了北京干部. 派到我们公社的都是公安部的. 他们非常讲求实际, 并不是一天到晚在那儿唱高调. 特别是林彪事件发生后, 大力提倡"说老实话、做老实人". 此后不久, 内迁到汉中的一个三线重点工厂汉江工具厂到陕北抽调知识青年. 他们需要一个英文翻译, 于是我被抽调去了汉中. ... See more
Yueyin,

咱们都有类似苦中有乐的经历. 周总理 于70 年给我们到陕北插队的北京知识青年派了北京干部. 派到我们公社的都是公安部的. 他们非常讲求实际, 并不是一天到晚在那儿唱高调. 特别是林彪事件发生后, 大力提倡"说老实话、做老实人". 此后不久, 内迁到汉中的一个三线重点工厂汉江工具厂到陕北抽调知识青年. 他们需要一个英文翻译, 于是我被抽调去了汉中.

http://www.hxzq.net/aspshow/showarticle.asp?id=1574



大约是69年12月底或70年初,周恩来总理与几个回京探亲的延安插队知青(大多是国务院工作人员子女)进行了座谈,周总理听了知青们的汇报后感到非常惊讶,他感叹道:离开陕北二十二年了没想到延安人民生活还是如此贫困落后,感到非常痛心,对不起老区人民。不久在全国计划工作会议上周总理特就此事发言大意是:‘延安的问题这么多,大人没反映,孩子反映了,…战争时期陕北人民用小米哺育了我们,全国解放20多年了,一些群众生活还这样困难,我心里非常难过,我们的工作没做好对不起老区人民…’。并表示:不能只建设西安,还要建设延安。

周总理还指示必须严惩迫害知青的有关人员。同时建议北京抽调干部到延安照管知青,争取做到每个有北京知青的村都配备一名北京干部。70年3月26日周总理还接见了参加延安知青座谈会的代表,据说竟没有一个延安知青参加接见。总理为此很生气,批评道:为什么不找青年来?…你们就是不关心群众,说起来可叫人难过。媒体在四月报道了此事的概况,并同时发表了49年毛给延安人民的一封复信。

首批北京支延干部600余人于70年5月24日到达延安。共约1200余名支延干部一直在延安地区工作到73年6月以后,最晚的一批支延干部直到75年5月才撤回北京。绝大多数干部与知青同吃同住,为维护知青的合法利益作出了努力,与知青结下了深厚的友谊。北京市房管局的支延干部鹿忠义1970年6月1日到达雷村。同年10月13日鹿因拖拉机翻车被砸得折胳膊断腿,12月底返京。





[Edited at 2009-03-27 04:15 GMT]
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ysun  Identity Verified
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Local time: 05:56
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机会与好人相助 Mar 27, 2009

Steve,

是啊!我一生中也遇到过不少好人,否则机会再多也白搭。当然,自己的努力也十分重要。

延长的地图上写道,“延长石油是我国大陆上开发最早的油地”。现在,那里成立了一个很大的延长石油集团,与以前相比有很大变化。休斯敦一家公司卖给他们一套炼油装置,让我翻译了许多技术资料。
http://www.sxycpc.com/

[Edited at 2009-03-27 18:56 GMT]


 

chica nueva
Local time: 22:56
Chinese to English
欲 vying, competing; Shaanbei scene/Gansu scene Mar 27, 2009

nigerose wrote:
hi, Lesley,我不是很懂诗词。但不要用你农业专家的思维来思考具体是指颜色还是材料,当作一个整体来想象吧。

[修改时间: 2009-03-25 04:31 GMT]


Hello nigerose

你也许不太感兴趣但是‘山舞银蛇,原驰蜡象,欲与天公试比高。’令我想到《凉州词》的’边城暮雨雁飞底,芦笋出生渐欲齐’:

1 我把第一个翻译:vying with the weather-gods to see who is higher
[其他翻译法: 1As if they sought to vie with heaven in their height; 2 as if to wrest heaven's domain.3 Vying with heaven in stature. ]

2 第二个我是这样翻译,但是一直不满意,觉得别扭...
Border town dusk rain wild-geese fly low,
reed shoots first growth imbued with a desire to be equal.

lai an

[Edited at 2009-03-27 07:59 GMT]


 

chica nueva
Local time: 22:56
Chinese to English
"Forced up Mt Liang"; be forced to join the Mt Liangshan rebels Mar 27, 2009

Hello Olaf

Are you still there. More about "The Water Margin" if you are interested.

Lesley

lai an wrote:

http://www.proz.com/forum/chinese/48523-书香世界_parfum_des_livres-page4.html#824881
Ming and Qing Fiction
...
At the same time as the "Romance of the Three Kingdoms" there was also Shi Nai'an's "Water Margin ". This novel draws its material from the story of the Liangshan Peasant Revolt headed by Song Jiang in the final years of the Northern Song, the author basing his recreation on the relevant "Water Margin" story-telling scripts, zaju operas, and folklore. The novel portrays the different tragic experiences of many of the oppressed, and writes of them all finally arriving at Liangshan by way of their own individual paths of resistance, and then from this, it vividly depicts the process of genesis and development of the peasant war. "To be driven to Liangshan" has become a set-phrase of the Chinese people, and Li Kui, Wu Song, Lin Chong and all the others, are heroes known to practically every household.
(Translated from Wang Yong Kuan et al., Native land, China Youth Press, Beijing, 1983)



1 “Forced up Mt Liang" was the first traditional opera to be performed in China after the smashing of the 'gang of four' (Colin MacKerras - rebellion in literature)
2 Chairman Mao said he was 'bishang liangshan' when he spent time with bandits in Jiangxi. (Google)
3 "Bi Shang Liang Shan" (nice pictures)
http://history.cultural-china.com/en/60H148H585.html
Bi Shang Liang Shan (meaning "be forced to join the Mount Liangshan rebels")
http://history.cultural-china.com/en/60H148H584.html
Heroes on Mount Liangshan

[Edited at 2009-03-27 21:20 GMT]


 

wherestip  Identity Verified
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诗词的翻译 Mar 28, 2009

lai an wrote:

Steve

1 Thank you very much! 不敢当。I am quite fond of 'frolicking' here, for two reasons: I think I have seen pictures and animations of Chinese dragons frolicking in the clouds. And, for me, there is an association with 'leviathan frolicking in the ocean'. (BTW in that piece, for 四面, I had to make a choice between on 'all four sides' and 'all around' ... )

2 In the same way, the Great Wall-dragon at Jiayuguan appearing and disappearing in the Gobi evoked (for me) pictures of 'Nessie' (not the plesiosaur, the sea-serpent type) in the loch: http://www.explorehistoricalif.com/images/badwater_nessie.jpg

3 Two questions:
i How do dragons move? only up-and-down or from also side-to-side 'snakewise'? (If it's only 忽高忽低,忽上忽下, then 'sinuous' won't do, I guess, and perhaps 'meandering' could be doubtful ... 请问,你的‘meander' 是‘慢悠悠无目标地走’的意思吗,还是...?)
ii And I wonder are 游龙 and 舞龙 stock images, like lion-rampant?

[ Apparently Nessie visited Shenyang last year, courtesy of a Scottish company: http://www.polenth.com/news/archives/19 The Dragon Stone. This is a nice site. It has all sorts of dragons, including Mongolian naga. But no taniwha ... http://www.proz.com/kudoz/english_to_chinese/folklore/1309831-taniwha.html ]

4 Auspicious animals etc, Song poet, Li Qing Zhao:
《醉花阴》:薄雾浓云愁永晨,瑞脑消金兽。
"Drunk under Flower Shadows":
'Mist and thick clouds tire of endless day, the auspicious essence leaves the golden animal.'
Any suggestions?

[Edited at 2009-03-27 03:13 GMT]


Lesley,

I have no experience in translating Chinese poems whatsoever, but here are some of my thoughts as a layman on some of the specific issues that you brought up ...


一潭云影幻游龙

As I said before, I think the use of "frolicking" in this instance is excellent, mainly because of the vivid dynamic image it creates of the dragon's reflection in the pool. A very similar Chinese expression 蛟龙戏水 is often used to impart the same sense of speed, flair, and agility of a person's movements in martial arts.

http://www.zdic.net/cy/ch/ZdicE8Zdic9BZdic9F13100.htm


游龙浮动于戈壁瀚海

Whereas the same word "frolicking" wouldn't fit as well when applied to the distant view of the Great Wall. After all, the Great Wall is not something that is constantly moving about, or not "in a state of flux" if you will. I personally think the Chinese term 游龙 in this instance is more of a metaphorical description of the twists and turns one could observe of the Great Wall, as it seemingly "meanders", or "undulates" like a dragon in motion, crisscrossing the mountain terrain of the wild frontier.


I don't think 游龙 and 舞龙 are necessarily fixed terms that represent particular stock images of a dragon either. 游 and 舞 are just different words people like to use to accentuate certain aspects of certain objects. It's the same type of usage as 游云、乱云、飞云、银月、明月、霜月, etc. One would typically choose whichever adjective suits the context and sounds the best. Some people would strictly go by which character sounds the most impressive to them.


As for the line from the poem "醉花阴", I'm afraid I really don't have any good suggestions to offer. I think it all depends on how much one wants to stick to the original Chinese. To make it understandable to an English-speaking audience, I personally believe there has to be some rearrangement made to the rhythm and syntax of the original verses. To strictly adhere to the Chinese syntax without any compromise, and to simultaneously strive for a one-for-one correspondence as far as the equivalence of terms is concerned, IMO would be foolhardy if not entirely impossible. I can appreciate your respect for the ancient art form by what seems to me like an attempt to preserve the original structure of each verse, but IMO such an approach would inevitably lead to a English translation that sounds very strange. And to me that is far from poetic.

But anyway, this is all just my own opinion, FWIW. Like I said, I've never translated any Chinese poems before

I did find this link though. It gives a pretty good explanation on how to interpret the classical Chinese.

http://ran-er.blog.sohu.com/47922229.html



醉花阴

- 李清照

薄雾浓云愁永昼,瑞脑消金兽。 佳节又重阳,玉枕纱厨,半夜凉初透。
东篱把酒黄昏后,有暗香盈袖。 莫道不消魂,帘卷西风,人比黄花瘦。

“薄雾愁云”是由中山王《文木赋》:“奔电屯云,薄雾浓雰”脱化而来。作者《渔家傲》:“天接云涛连晓雾。”梁简文帝诗:“晓雾晦阶前。”陶弘景诗:“惯衔晓雾惊群雁。”可见“雾”一般指早晨。“云”却不定时,有朝云、晓云、晨云、暮云……而且“云”可连“雾”,如作者《渔家傲》:“天接云涛连晓雾。”就是这样的。如此,这句的意思就是,从早晨起就有雾,雾接着浓云,一整天如此,就是所谓“浓云不雨长阴”,是最使人感无聊寂寞、最惹人怀念远人的天气,自然会使人愁了。“永”字说明“愁”的时间很长及愁的无法排遣。“永昼”多用以形容夏日,而时下已是昼短夜长的深秋季节,可知“永昼”当是一种对时间的心理错觉,作者借此点出了她独守空闺时的度日如年之感。此词的开头,缘情布景,情景交融。其中蕴含着作者丰富的思想感情,情景融于一炉。开始作者用颇具艺术魅力的笔墨,渲染了凄凉抑郁的气氛,既是环境的铺陈,也是人物思想感情的披露。谢榛认为:“凡起句当如爆竹,骤响易彻。”此词的开头,也似一声轰鸣,响彻全篇,并余音不绝,惆怅忧伤的意绪贯穿始终。 瑞脑:即龙脑,香料名。金兽:兽形的铜香炉。枯坐铜香炉旁,看那炉中的香料一点点地消融,岂不见出作者的寂寞无聊?此句写出了时间的漫长无聊,同时又烘托出环境的凄寂。





[Edited at 2009-03-29 06:53 GMT]


 

wherestip  Identity Verified
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Local time: 05:56
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picking up from my last post Mar 29, 2009

I meant "an English translation" in the above post BTW.




http://www.proz.com/post/1083785#1083785

One Less Bell to Answer (Marilyn McCoo)

One less bell to answer
One less egg to fry
One less man to pick up after
I should be happy but all I do is cry



IMHO, quite often the inherent beauty of a language isn't really translatable. For example, try translating these few lines of simple lyrics from this old song by The 5th Dimension. I seriously doubt the end result in Chinese would be anything elegant, or anything still singable to the original tune.

On the flip side, imagine someone wanting to sing in English a few segments of the Peking Opera "红灯记"

I truly believe certain pieces in certain art forms are better left alone in their original form. Besides paraphrasing, a footnote of explanation might be the right prescription for getting the message across to different cultures.



[Edited at 2009-03-29 19:42 GMT]


 

chica nueva
Local time: 22:56
Chinese to English
Shaanbei-Yan'an; composer-revolutionaries Apr 1, 2009

lai an wrote:
Shui-Hu-Zhuan: Though I really know very little about it, I know it is much loved by the people, including the main characters, events and places. Shui-Hu to me denotes a whole genre and 'topos': Jianghu, Lulin, the Greenwood, Outlaws ...

Here is what a Chinese reference says about it:
http://www.proz.com/forum/chinese/48523-书香世界_parfum_des_livres-page4.html#824881
Ming and Qing Fiction
... The novel portrays the different tragic experiences of many of the oppressed, and writes of them all finally arriving at Liangshan by way of their own individual paths of resistance, and then from this, it vividly depicts the process of genesis and development of the peasant war. (Translated from Wang Yong Kuan et al., Native land, China Youth Press, Beijing, 1983)


This does make me think of 'Yan'an' and the composers there:
He Lu Ting (1903~ ) Native of Shaoyang County in Hu'nan. ... In 1941 he went to the New Fourth Army, and in 1943, he went to Yan'an, ...
Xian Xing Hai (1905~1945) Ancestral home Panyu, Guangdong, born into a poor boatman family in Macao. ... In 1938 he was the head of the Yan'an Lu Xun Academy of Art and Literature Music Department, and also taught classes concurrently at the "Women's University" ("Nü Da").
Lü Ji (1909~ ) Original name Lü Zhan Qing, native of Xiangtan in Hu'nan. ... In 1937, he went to Yan'an and became the director of the Lu Xun Academy of Art and Literature Music Department.
Liang Han Guang (1917~ ) Original name Liang Yu Heng, native of Kaiping in Guangdong. ... he went to Yan'an's Lu Xun Academy of Art and Literature and studied composition with Xian Xing Hai.
Zheng Lu Cheng (1918~1976) Born in Southern Korea, Quanluonandao, Guangzhou (全罗南道光州). ... In 1937, he went to Yan'an, and studied and worked successively in the North Shaanxi Gongxue, Lu Xun Academy of Art and Literature and Kang Da.
Ge Yan (1922~ ) Native of Shanghai City. ... in 1938 he went to Yan'an with the "Children's Opera Troupe".
Huang Zhun (1926~ ) Woman composer. Native of Huang Yan, Zhejiang. In 1938 at Yan'an, she studied vocal music with Zheng Lu Cheng, and studied composition under Xian Xing Hai.

Translated from: Wang Qin Yan et al ed., Music Appreciation Handbook, Shanghai Literature and Art Publishing House, Shanghai, 1983

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5EONLdvDiQ&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNRIsTq2D7I&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0W02F_lv7A&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZlTrR8fsjw&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xXysVs518ec&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emI05SbwIvg&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QieeHYuNM9s&feature=related
Xian Xinghai's "Yellow River Cantata"

[Edited at 2009-04-01 03:40 GMT]


 

chica nueva
Local time: 22:56
Chinese to English
rivers; how dragons move Apr 2, 2009

wherestip wrote:

Lesley,

I have no experience in translating Chinese poems whatsoever, but here are some of my thoughts as a layman on some of the specific issues that you brought up ...


一潭云影幻游龙
As I said before, I think the use of "frolicking" in this instance is excellent, mainly because of the vivid dynamic image it creates of the dragon's reflection in the pool. A very similar Chinese expression 蛟龙戏水 is often used to impart the same sense of speed, flair, and agility of a person's movements in martial arts.
http://www.zdic.net/cy/ch/ZdicE8Zdic9BZdic9F13100.htm

游龙浮动于戈壁瀚海
Whereas the same word "frolicking" wouldn't fit as well when applied to the distant view of the Great Wall. After all, the Great Wall is not something that is constantly moving about, or not "in a state of flux" if you will. I personally think the Chinese term 游龙 in this instance is more of a metaphorical description of the twists and turns one could observe of the Great Wall, as it seemingly "meanders", or "undulates" like a dragon in motion, crisscrossing the mountain terrain of the wild frontier.

I don't think 游龙 and 舞龙 are necessarily fixed terms that represent particular stock images of a dragon either. 游 and 舞 are just different words people like to use to accentuate certain aspects of certain objects. It's the same type of usage as 游云、乱云、飞云、银月、明月、霜月, etc. One would typically choose whichever adjective suits the context and sounds the best. Some people would strictly go by which character sounds the most impressive to them.


Hello Steve

Thank you very much! This is great.

Rivers 河流:
1 What do you think of this for a meander? http://www.helensville.co.nz/general/todo.htm . I lived here for a year. As for ‘蜿蜒’这个词 I know it quite well, because the Avon River twists and turns its way through Christchurch. Most of our rivers in Canterbury, however, are braided rivers arising in the Southern Alps.
2 The great rivers of China, the Yellow River and the Yangtze/Changjiang, seem to take on various forms over their long courses. I think I have seen a photo of 蜿蜒的黄河 the winding course of the Yellow River in its upper reaches.

Dragon/Great Wall:
1 Re 蛟龙戏水 martial arts - the poses and movements often seem to have poetic names, very interesting.
2 浮动于戈壁瀚海 like a dragon 'in motion’ - yes, exactly. maybe 'floating along in', or gliding through/over, much better. (孽龙会‘钻’。‘钻来钻去’又不对劲,我觉得,不大美,是不是含贬义。)

[ References: http://tw.myblog.yahoo.com/ajyyou/article?mid=6733&prev=6775&next=6723
紐西蘭南島 基督城海格雷公園 (Hagley Park) 雅芳河蜿蜒而過的公園
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZLhWIJQYj8g
Crossing the Rakaia River Bridge - a braided river
http://209.85.173.132/search?q=cache:gPDx6w11nS8J:www.hkga.org/download/hkcee_course2003/HKGA_Theme_Landforms_%20and_Exogenetic_processes.ppt%20meander%20oxbow%20曲流&cd=5&hl=en&ct=clnk
A brief technical outline on 长江.
http://dict.netat.net/2/meander.html
专业解释 ]

[Edited at 2009-04-02 09:42 GMT]


 

wherestip  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:56
Chinese to English
+ ...
《醉花阴》 的翻译 Apr 3, 2009

薄雾浓云愁永昼,瑞脑消金兽。






http://bafooz.livejournal.com/259174.html?thread=523878

To the Tune, "Intoxicated in the Shadows of Flowers"
-- minsun

Thin mist, dense clouds, a grief-stricken day;
auspicious incense burns in the gold animal.






http://bafooz.livejournal.com/259174.html?thread=523878

"Zui hua yin"
-- bafooz

Thin mists - thick clouds - sad all day long.
The gold animal spurts incense from its head.






http://www.chinapage.org/poet-e/liqing-e.html

To the Tune of INTOXICATED UNDER THE SHADOW OF FLOWERS
-- Translation by Lucy Chao Ho, Seton Hall University

Light mists and heavy clouds,
melancholy the long dreary day,

In the golden cencer
the burning incense is dying away.









Thanks for the miscellaneous links, Lesley. I've rearranged them above for easier reference.

It's certainly interesting to see the different attempts at translating this poem, particularly the first two lines. I can't honestly say any of the end results inspire me literarily. But I think Lucy Chao Ho's approach makes the most sense to me. Not only does she try to capture the mood of the original poem, but she also makes a discernable effort to deliver the translated text in a way understandable to an English-speaking audience.



[Edited at 2009-04-04 02:52 GMT]


 

chica nueva
Local time: 22:56
Chinese to English
Li Qing Zhao: 雁 wild geese; 却是旧时相识 Apr 5, 2009

lai an wrote:
4 Auspicious animals etc, Song poet, Li Qing Zhao:
《醉花阴》:薄雾浓云愁永晨,瑞脑消金兽。
"Drunk under Flower Shadows":
Any suggestions?

[Edited at 2009-03-27 03:13 GMT]


Hello Steve

1 I'm glad you liked the poem. Here are two more versions of this line that I found:
Faint mist, somber clouds; sorrow the whole day. My incense wears thin its golden beast.
Tenuous mist, thick cloud overcast; sorrow the whole endless day. Incense wears thin the brazen beast; http://people.ucsc.edu/~myrtreia/essays/double_nine.html
Perhaps the censer is made of brass. Is that possible?

2 I am also interested in this line from Sheng sheng man ("Every Sound Lentemente"):

雁过也,正伤心,却是旧时相识。
A wild goose has passed by, my heart is wounded, but then I recognise it is an old friend. (Liu Wu-chi)
The wild geese pass by yes, and it really pains me, in the old days we knew each other. (my try)

How would you translate 却是旧时相识 here?
and 雁 -> wild geese or swan geese? (or singular, goose?)
What is your feeling on this?

[ Commentaries and translations, etc:
http://books.google.com/books?id=MUqrApIdoWAC&pg=PA117&lpg=PA117&dq=A%20wild%20goose%20has%20passed%20by,%20my%20heart%20is%20wounded,%20but%20then%20I%20recognise%20it%20is%20an%20old%20friend.%20%20liu%20wu-chi&source=bl&ots=oFiUfMCsCr&sig=bQf8d_YWXsDuOuKCzsw1P2IsA2I&hl=en&ei=qBrZSa2RKaTitAPHjIS2Cg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1
http://zhidao.baidu.com/question/15251719.html
commentary and layouts (in Chinese)
http://www.proz.com/forum/chinese/6535-what_is_your_favorite_chinese_poem-page2.html#144075
This ci begins with seven pairs of repeated words, writing about Li Qing Zhao with the nation defeated and the family dead, overcome with boredom and wanting to find comfort for her spirit. However, the result of her search is desolate bleakness, which makes her feel even more tragic and sad. It is difficult to bear. Continuing on, she writes of the autumn weather suddenly warm again, but the next moment turning cold, and feels that these sorts of days are the most difficult to get through. She wants to drink a few cups of light wine to dispel her cares, but the autumn wind's whistling at night means that even after the wine she cannot sleep. Right then, the swan geese, which had delivered messages for her in those years, fly over honking plaintively. And how much hearing that familiar call could break your heart! Outside the window all over the ground are withered and fallen chrysanthemums. The ones that have not fallen on the ground have already shrivelled up; there is no way they are worth picking. Watching at the window by herself, how could she endure the dark? The light rain at dusk in autumn beats down on the already dead yellow wutong leaves, and the plip plop plip plop sound just heightens ones vexation. For this series of scenes, how could you possibly use the one word 'ennui' to cover them all? (Translated from '"Gargling Jade" and "Heartbroken"' in Zhu Zhongyu, Chinese History Stories - Southern Song and Jin, China Children's and Young People's Press, Beijing, 1982)
http://www.proz.com/forum/chinese/129977-question_about_tv_show_the_water_margin_水滸傳-page4.html#1090736 ]

[Edited at 2009-04-06 05:40 GMT]


 
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