japonisme: flowering parable

10 March 2011

flowering parable


eine dunkle rote rose
brech ich der zum scheidegrusse
deiner liebe bluhend gleichnis
dornig zeichen meiner busse
dornen einzig hal mein lieben
scharfe dornen dir beschieden
ach verbieg, dem niemals wieder
ein rose blühte hienieden!


a dark red rose
I break for the farewell
your love flowering parable
Spiny sign my coach
thorns only keep my love
sharp thorns you allotted
ah bend, the never again
a rose bloomed here below!

reinhard volker

i don't think you could find a worse translation than this google one (unless of course you used a babelfish one). while i could somehow make some of the hoytema translations rhyme, i was at a complete loss here. i guess several reasons: german sounds less like english than dutch does? the translation would make more sense were it translated by someone who actually knows german? please feel free to try your hand.

in any case, this may serve to illustrate the fact that not having been around for these grand magazines doesn't always mean you missed something. this is from meggendorfer blatter, vol. 61, 1905. i scanned the image (on my very poor scanner) from the book i alluded to earlier, la linea viennese, by giovanni fanelli, published in italy by cantini in 1989.

note the chop created by mila von luttich. big M, then a medium-sized L with a teensy V attached fit into the M. this is still not one of my absolute favorites of hers, but i wanted to try the poem thing. she had the ability to embrace many of the styles that were floating around in those times, and still make them her own. more to come.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

The letters are so gracious that I couldn't resist. I think I got a little closer:


A dark red rose...
I break thee for farewell:
a flowering allegory of your love,
a spiny symbol of my repentance.

Thorns once has my love,
sharp thorns, thee granted.
Oh forgive the one, for whom
no rose anymore flowers in this life!

We need real english here, of course. d

13 March, 2011 09:24  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

d-- you are truly a hero.

thank you. it is now beginning to make sense to me!!

13 March, 2011 10:16  

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hi, and thanks so much for stopping by. i spend all too much time thinking my own thoughts about this stuff, so please tell me yours. i thrive on the exchange!

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