COLGUEN LES GENTS AB ALEGRIA
FESTES ...
LET OTHERS HAIL THE HOLIDAYS WITH
LAUGHTER ...
Ausiàs Marchtrans. John Frederick Nims (from Catalan)
Colguen les gents.....ab alegria festes,
loant a Déu,.....entremesclant deports;
places, carrers.....e delitables orts
sien cerquats.....ab recont de grans gestes;
e vaja yo.....los sepulcres cerquant,
interrogant.....ànimes infernades,
e respondran,.....car no són companyades
d'altre que mi.....en son continuu plant.

Cascú requer.....e vol a son senblant;
per ço no·m plau.....la pràtica dels vius.
D'imaginar.....mon estat són esquius;
si com d'om mort,.....de mi prenen espant.
Lo rey xipré,.....presoner d'un heretge,
en mon esguart.....no és malauyrat,
car ço que vull.....no serà may finat,
de mon desig.....no·m porà guarir metge.

Cell Texion.....qui·l buytre·l menga·l fetge
e per tots temps.....brota la carn de nou,
en son menjar.....aquell ocell may clou;
pus fort dolor.....d'aquesta·m té lo setge,
car és hun verm.....qui romp la mia pensa,
altre lo cor,.....qui may cessen de rompre,
e llur treball.....no·s porà enterrompre
sinó ab ço.....que d'aver se defensa.

E si la mort.....no·m dugués tal offensa
- ffer mi absent.....d'una tan plasent vista -,
no li graesch.....que de tera no vista
lo meu cors nuu,.....qui de plaer no pensa
de perdre pus.....que lo ymaginar
los meus desigs.....no poder·se complir;
e si·m cové.....mon derrer jorn finir,
seran donats .....térmens a ben amar.

E si·n lo cel.....Déu me vol allogar,
part veura Ell,.....per complir mon delit
serà mester.....que·m sia dellay dit
que d'esta mort.....vos ha plagut plorar,
penedint-vos.....com per poqua mercè
mor l'ignoscent.....e per amar-vos martre:
cell qui lo cors.....de l'arma vol departre,
si ferm cregués.....que·us dolrrieu de se.

Lir entre carts,.....vós sabeu e yo sé
que·s pot bè fer.....hom morir per amor;
creure de mi,.....que só en tal dolor,
no fareu molt.....que·y doneu plena fe.
Let others hail the holidays with laughter,
with pomp in church, and parties here and there;
traipsing from park to plaza round a city
gala with rich old ballads in the air.
That's not for me. I'm trudging off for tombstones,
bursting with topics for the infernal folk.
We'll have a word or two. What other crony
could the long moan, the terrible tears evoke?

Each to his own; it's so. Birds of a feather -
I answer, all men living are my foes.
Refusing to allow for my condition,
they stare aghast, as if a dead man rose.
The King of Cyprus in a pagan dungeon,
you'd call his dawdlings genuine miseries,
weighed against mine? I want what's not for having;
medical men despair of my disease.

Old Tityus, with the vulture at his stomach,
gobble by gobble sees the gashes heal,
and still the feast goes on, the great fowl jabbing -
grimmer than this, the settled grief I feel.
For there's a worm that gnaws the brain's sweet tissue;
another gnaws the heart. Remorselessly.
Nothing to interrupt their devastation:
nothing, except the one thing closed to me.

And were not death so savage an extorter
as snatch me from what's loveliest to see,
he'd never have my thanks for not a-bundling
this pulp away in earth, bereaving me
of nothing much as pleasure goes: some fancies,
certain desires, varieties of dearth.
Also because: the day I die means finish
for truest of all true love on this earth.

If God saw fit to lodge me in his heaven,
for actual bliss (apart from seeing him)
I'd have to know, and know on good assurance,
that hearing of my death, your eyes went dim:
hear you repented, grieving: Such and such a
favor had saved this innocent, that dies
a martyr to your love and would have sped his
death, had he thought you'd gasp, with stricken eyes.

Lily-Among-The-Thistles: you know, I know,
a muscular man may sicken to a wraith
and die for love. As I do now, believe me.
Only believe your eyes. No need of faith.

Trans. Copyright © Mrs. Bonnie Nims 1971 - publ. Rutgers University Press


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