Yanka Dyagileva - Крестом и нулём (перевод на Английский)


Крестом и нулём

Крестом и нулем запечатанный северный день
Похожий на замкнутый в стенах семейный скандал
Рассыпалось слово на иглы и тонкую жесть
А злая метель обязала плясать на костре
Столетней бессонницы в горле гудят провода
Болит голова. Это просто болит голова
А вот и цена, и весна, и кровать, и стена
А вот чудеса, небеса, голоса и глаза
Чужая дорога неверною левой рукой
Крестом зачеркнула, нулем обвела по краям
А я почему-то стою и смотрю до сих пор
Как многоэтажный полет зарывается в снег
Истлевшая осень золой на осколках зубов
Конечную степень усталости меряет ночь
Болит голова. Это просто болит голова
Стоять и смотреть - это просто простить и молчать
Крестом и нулем разрешились пустые места
В безвременном доме за разумом грохнула дверь
Рассыпалось слово на иглы и тонкую жесть
А злая метель обязала плясать на костре.
В последний раз исправлено Green_Sattva в сб, 29/04/2017 - 19:04
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перевод на Английский

By The Cross And The Ought

A northern day sealed by the Cross and the Ought fades away
Resembling the scandals that families tend to encave
The word broke up into needles and tiny tin plates
The blizzard in anger obliged me to dance in a fire
Insomnia's old centenarian hums in my gorge
The pain in my head is a symptom of headache, I guess
And here's the price and the prime, and the bed, and the side
And here're the marvels, the voices, the skies, and the eyes
The alien road in tremor by wayward left hand
Lined through with a cross, with an ought outlined all the sides
And I'm for some reason still standing and looking on how
A multistage flight digs himself into outspread snow
The smouldering autumn's small embers dismember the teeth
The final degree of fatigue's quantified by the night
The pain in my head is a symptom of headache, I guess
To stand and to watch - this is simply to pardon, to whist
The desolate place has delivered of its Cross-and-Ought
The mind leaving this timeless house outbroke with a slam
The word broke up into needles and tiny tin plates
The blizzard in anger obliged me to dance in a fire
Добавлено Brat в сб, 15/04/2017 - 17:51
В последний раз исправлено Brat в пт, 28/04/2017 - 17:17

Dedicated to the memory of our dear Yanka.
That was one of her last songs...

Ваш рейтинг: None В среднем: 5 (Всего голосов: 1)
petit élève    пт, 28/04/2017 - 05:17

Thank you so much for translating these songs.
I really love Yanka's music, but my Russian is too weak to understand everything, so your help is much appreciated.

You are using rather uncommon English words there. "ought" is fine, but "whist" is rather Scottish and mostly used in the fixed expression "haud yer whist" (shut up!).
Also "encave" and "gorge" sound more like French. Could be used in English too, I suppose, but that sounds pretty archaic.

Как многоэтажный полет зарывается в снег -> I don't get the "humifuse" here. The word does not exist as far as I know, and I can't think of a typo that would turn it into something meaningful.
The line basically means "like a multistage (rocket) flight digging itself (crashing) into the snow", right?

Brat    пт, 28/04/2017 - 09:30

The word "humifuse" does really exist in English: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/humifuse But it refers mostly to plants.
I used it to emphasize the antithesis of a dynamic "multi-storeyed" (in the original meaning, but I had to use "multistage" which is close by its meaning to get into the native metre) with the snow statically mantling the ground with a thin layer.
In the original verse Yanka describes the flight of a suicide jumped from a multi-storeyed building.
Thank you a lot for you comment, I'll revise the "humifuse snow".

petit élève    пт, 28/04/2017 - 09:35

Ah well, that's really a specialized term. I probably don't even know the equivalent in my native language :).

OK I was wondering about this "multi-storey" vs "multi stage", but I followed what I understood of your translation.

Brat    пт, 28/04/2017 - 17:17

Well, I am a farmer, so that's the explanation of the botanic skew. Regular smile I should have selected words more carefully, because ink-horn terms were rarely used by Yanka. The most famous of them is "anhedonia", from the eponymously  Wink smile named song.
In the above case, the super-objective of the translator is to describe the moment when the Movement meets the Quiescence. This is a particular case of the eternal meeting of Life and Death, which has become the central theme of Yanka's poetry.
And the most complex task in this case is to describe the continuance of this process. There are only 3 tenses in Russian (past->present->future), that’s why Yanka uses the words “многоэтажный полёт” (“multi-storeyed flight” if translated literally). It will have not much sense in Russian too until you read “зарывается в снег” (“is digging itself into snow”). Since that you’ll have the full “frame” in your mind.
In addition, the process of flying is lasting longer than the process of digging. This is described through the long “multi-storeyedness” of the “flight” and the shortness of the “snow”. But before the “snow” there is a pretty long word “зарывается”; it has multiple meanings in Russian (another one is “to push it”,” to step too far”, “to overstep the mark, the red line”). Its role is to make the flight even more long-lasting and unpredictable before it meets the “snow”; to make the reader/listener realize the whole meaning of the “frame” at the very end of it. At the first glance it seems to be better to use Present Continuous for “digging”, (“A multistage flight is digging himself into the snow”) but it is a too short process to be described with it, I think. Also, “the” is probably not suitable here, because, even though there are no articles at all in Russian, it can be concluded that an abstract “snow” is mentioned here by the author. Thus the only way left to follow the author’s intention is to insert a word not directly associated with “snow” in order to make the “flight” a little bit longer.
According to the said I decided to change “humifuse” into “outspread”, even though it will be phonetically not as good as "humifuse".
Thank you once again, please, feel free to contact me in case of any difficulties; because Yanka’s poetry is not aimed at the “average reader/listener”, it needs to be translated very carefully. Readers’ advice will be very helpful since that.

Brat    пт, 04/08/2017 - 09:38

As for “whist” – it is a good old word used by Shakespeare and unfortunately fallen under oblivion nowadays. http://nfs.sparknotes.com/tempest/page_46.html
Come unto these yellow sands,
And then take hands.
Curtsied when you have, and kissed
The wild waves whist.
Foot it featly here and there,
And, sweet sprites, bear
The burden. Hark, hark!

It sounds marvellous, doesn’t it?
The possible “to pardon-n-shut” is pretty rude, I guess. And “pardon” is also too French, but it has the right stress. Regular smile The “encave’s” meaning is the closest to the original “запертый в стенах”, so it will be better to leave it in its place. “Gorge” is more suitable than “throat” phonetically, but it can be interchanged if it is singable too. And, besides, it is more "medical", correlating the whole song’s theme with its headaches, insomnia and suicidal tendencies.

petit élève    пт, 28/04/2017 - 22:55

Wow, I see you've put a lot of thought in your translation.

Shakespeare is certainly beautiful, but his tongue and modern English are practically two different languages. His plays are often subtitled even for an English audience. I sure can't read it without a few footnotes.

I don't mind seeing "French" words in your translations, that's easier for me to read, if anything :).
I was just being curious about the reason you used them.

That could make your translations less accessible to English natives, though. If the idea is to make Yanka's works known to a broad audience, you might consider balancing aesthetics and ease of read, or maybe adding a few footnotes.

Brat    пт, 04/08/2017 - 09:41

Thank you for the feedback! Frankly speaking, I am not aimed to make the translations of Yanka’s verses easily readable for all the folk. Yanka once said: “Those who really need will understand”. Her poetry is not easy to understand even for native Russians. It is compressed and ciphered, providing the reader with allusions to a wide variety of authors, from Pushkin to Bashlachev in Russia, and from Archimedes to Rimbaud and Eliot abroad. It also contains a massive layer of folklore, idioms, often combined or used in an unusual way, etc. In my translations I try to follow the author’s intention, but sometimes it is not possible. But in such cases I try to fill in the gaps with something alike. Also, Yanka uses alliterations very frequently. In the above translation, for instance, there is a “tasty” string that I managed to translate very close to its meaning and sounding:
Истлевшая осень золой на осколках зубов
The smouldering autumn's small embers dismember the teeth
Considering the above said I will be satisfied if one of a hundred readers gets interested in the verses and starts to explore Yanka’s legacy. Though there are only 29 songs and about 45 verses, you can make a new discovery almost every day of the study. That is the miracle of Yanka’s talent.

petit élève    сб, 29/04/2017 - 15:42

I was planning to have a look and try to translate a couple songs into French, but that seems like an impossibly tall order now. My Russian is mediocre at best and I sure couldn't tell a reference to Bashlachev from one to T.S.Eliot. Ah well, I would not like to play the attendant lord, so I'd rather go back to regular English pop, that's more within my reach.

Brat    сб, 29/04/2017 - 17:14

That's not a problem: you can try to translate "Декорации": it will be easier to you even if your Russian is not pretty good. All the words there are simple, and associated together they form a kind of coq-al'ane, which is probably well-known to you since you are French. Wink smile

petit élève    сб, 29/04/2017 - 20:05

This one was not too difficult indeed. If there were allusions, I missed them all though.

Brat    вс, 30/04/2017 - 02:51

The allusions there are all volatile, and you can't tell definitely what they are pointing at. So, each translation of this song will have its own charm. Wink smile

Green_Sattva    сб, 29/04/2017 - 19:07

Я думаю, переводить Янку на английски сложно в принципе, а переводить эквиритмично- сложнее вдвойне.
Вы достойно справились с задачей.

Brat    вс, 30/04/2017 - 02:56

Спасибо за оценку, я постараюсь перевести все Янкины песни подобным образом.

sandring    пн, 28/08/2017 - 18:17

Hi, guys, I'd translate the title "With the Cross and the Nought" (the game is called Noughts and Crosses). If sealed, then with. Regular smile

Brat    вт, 29/08/2017 - 12:23

First of all, let me thank you for the feedback. I see you’ve snatched the allusion to a well-known game in the song. That is good because it was put there intentionally by the author. In the book by Y. Sokolov the song’s text is preceded by this sign ⊗. But that’s not all folks here. Firstly, we should consider Yanka’s lexical metonymy: the game has two popular names in English (the most popular noughts-n-crosses, the less popular oughts-n-crosses and naughts-n-crosses/aughts-n-crosses as variants). In Russian it has only one name: крестики-нолики. Making out a kind of double-metaphor (1. - cross and ought as stand-alone graphic symbols and 2. – oughts-n-crosses as a game) Yanka uses a kind of complicated lexical metonymy: she derives крест of the diminutival крестик and нуль of the diminutival нолик. Let’s mark that in Russian we have two synonyms: ноль and нуль. They are very close in semantics, but differ a lot in phonaesthetic perception. Yanka uses нуль instead of the closest derivative ноль, and this should be considered when translating the song. Furthermore, we should consider the allusions made by English words: nought – not (nothing), naught – naughty, ought|aught – 0|O, or ought – must. Having the above said in mind, and also considering the author’s graphic signature (a kind of seal) ⊗ preceding the song’s text, the preferred variant will be ought, I think; at least nought is not as surrounding as ought, AFAIK. Wink smile
You can also read some stuff on the topic at