Thursday, January 18, 2007

Neruda at night

I don't know which I enjoy more - the sombre Spanish or Merwin's English - so here are both

Te recuerdo como eras
Pablo Neruda

Te recuerdo como eras en el último otoño.
Eras la boina gris y el corazón en calma.
En tus ojos peleaban las llamas del crepúsculo.
Y las hojas caìan en el aqua de tu alma.

Apegada a mis brazos como una enredadera,
las hojas recogían tu voz lentay en calma.
Hoguera de estupor en que mi sed ardía.
Dulce jacinto azul torcido sobre mi alma.

Siento viajar tus ojos y es distante el otoño:
boina gris, voz de pájaro y corazón de casa
hacia donde emigraban mis profundos anhelos
y caìan mis besos alegres como brasas.

Cielo desde un navìo. Campo desde los cerros.
Tu recuerdo es de luz, de humo, de estanque en calma!
Màs allà de tus ojos ardìan los crepúsculos.
Hojas secas de otoño giraban en tu alma.

I Remember You As You Were
Pablo Neruda

I remember you as you were in the last autumn.
You were the grey beret and the still heart.
In your eyes the flames of the twilight fought on.
And the leaves fell in the water of your soul.

Clasping my arms like a climbing plant
the leaves garnered your voice, that was slow and at peace.
Bonfire of awe in which my thirst was burning.
Sweet blue hyacinth twisted over my soul.

I feel your eyes traveling, and the autumn is far off:
grey beret, voice of a bird, heart like a house
towards which my deep longings migrated
and my kisses fell, happy as embers.

Sky from a ship. Field from the hills.
Your memory is made of light, of smoke, of a still pond!
Beyond your eyes, farther on, the evenings were blazing.
Dry autumn leaves revolved in your soul.
Trans. W.S. Merwin


Lyle Daggett said...

Mmmmm, Neruda.

Ann, not sure if you want to go to the work of it, but for general FYI, there's a pretty good online guide to html code for language accent marks, here, in case you want to go back in and add the accent marks and tildes.

The page atg the above link is basically a chart showing the string of html code for letters with accent marks, tildes, umlauts, etc. in several languages.(It actually has two charts, I've always used the first one). I found it quite easy to follow.

You can put the html code in the "Edit html" window of the blogpost, at the appropriate spot in the text (substitute the string of code for the letter). It also works for accent marks in the blogpost title, and in links in the sidebar.

Another way I've found that's worked, with Spanish anyway, is to type the poem in MS Word, and insert the accented letters from the Symbols characters in the Insert menu. (Insert the symbol instead of typing the letter.) Then I copy and paste from Word into the Compose window in Blogger. It's worked every time I've done it, even when the Blogger post font is different from the Word font.

Passing this along...

Ann said...


I REALLY appreciate you sharing that info as I knew the marks were't showing - knew they were important but didn't know how to get them into blogger. So thank you for the info - I'll make the changes as soon as I can.