Tuesday, February 13, 2007


Yo no soy yo by Juana Ramon Jimenez

Yo no soy yo
Soy el que marcha a mi lado
y a quien no veo

Al que visito algunas veces

y olvido otras

El que me perdona

cuando como golosinas

El que anda en la naturaleza

cuando yo estoy en el interior

El que permanece silencioso

cuando yo hablo

El que permanecera en pie

cuando yo muera


translation #1

I AM NOT I

I am not I.
I am this one
Walking beside me whom I do not see,
Whom at times I manage to visit,
And at other times I forget.

The one who remains silent when I talk,
The one who forgives, sweet, when I hate,
The one who takes a walk when I am indoors,
The one who will remain standing when I die.


translation #2 by piktor (thank you)

I am not myself.
I am this,
that travels next to me without notice;
whom I visit sometimes,
and, sometimes, I forget.
Whom, quietly, silences when I speak,
who grants blithe pardon, while I hate,
that wanders into where I'm not,
who will still stand when I die.

4 comments:

Callooh said...

strange really being the only one to comment on your own post, but it's my post, and I'll do what I like....

I prefer piktor's translation for it's simplicity and eloquence - it, to me, says the same as the previous translation, but more quietly which is a voice I think suits the original Spanish (which I wish I could read better). I am very grateful.

piktor said...

Callooh, myself being a commentator on your comments, part of your blog, say this: I felt the translation #1 was a clunker. Juan Ramon Jimenez was a modernist/nihilist. He refused to use capitals and traditional spelling. This great poem is the essence of laconic eloquence. I was lucky to discover it thanks to you.

Callooh said...

and now I must discover more of this poet, and likely more clunker translations, unless you would continue to be gracious?

ps I generally do not use capitals in my writing, they are too loud.

piktor said...

Callooh, he is a truly great poet, so it should be easier than with a second rater. I will contribute to your effort with great joy.