PREN-M· ENAXÍ COM AL PATRÓ QU·EN PLATGA ... KNOW WHAT I'M LIKE? SOME CAPTAIN MOORS HIS SHIP ...
Ausiàs Marchtrans. John Frederick Nims (from Catalan)
Pren-m· enaxí.....com al patró qu·en platga
té sa gran nau.....e pens· aver castell;
vehent lo cel.....ésser molt clar e bell,
creu fermament.....c'un· àncor· assats haja.
E sent venir.....soptós hun temporal
de tempestat.....e temps incomportable;
leva son juhi.....que si molt és durable,
cerquar los ports.....més qu· aturar li val.

Moltes veus és.....que·l vent és fortunal,
tant que no pot.....surtir sens lo contrari,
e cella clau.....qui·us tanqua dins l'armari
no pot obrir.....aquell matex portal.
Asi m'à pres,.....trobant-m· anamorat,
per sobres-alt.....qui·m ve de vós, m· aymia:
del no amar.....desalt ne té la via,
mas hun sol pas.....meu no·y serà trobat.

Menys que lo peix.....és en lo bosch trobat
e lus lleons.....dins l'aygu· an lur sojorn,
la mi· amor.....per null temps pendrà torn,
sol conexent.....que de mi·us doneu grat;
e flu de vós.....que·m sabreu bé conèxer,
e, conegut,.....no·m serà mal grahida
tota dolor.....havent per vós sentida;
ladonchs veureu.....les flames d'amor créxer.

Si mon voler.....he dat mal a parèxer,
creheu de cert.....que ver· amor no·m luny;
pus que lo sol.....és calt al mes de juny,
ard mon cor flach.....sens algun grat merèxer.
Altre sens mi.....d'açò merex la culpa;
vullau-li mal,.....com tan humil servent
vos té secret.....per son defaliment;
cert, ésAmor.....que mi, amant, encolpa.

Ma volentat.....ab la rahó s'envolpa
e fan acort,.....la qualitat seguint,
tals actes fent.....que·l cors és defallint
en poch de temps.....una gran part de polpa.
Lo poch dormir.....magres· al cors m'acosta,
dobla'm l'engýn.....per contemplar Amor;
lo cors molt gras,.....trobant-se dormidor,
no pot dar pas.....en aquest· aspra costa.

Plena de seny,.....donau-me una crosta
del vostra pa,.....qui·m leve l'amargor;
de tot mengar.....m'à pres gran desabor,
si no d'aquell.....qui molt· amor me costa.
Know what I'm like? Some captain moors his ship
safe alongshore, and gloating, "There's my castle!"
nods satisfied the skies are fine and clear,
one anchor more than answering for the vessel.
Soon he's surprised by unexpected heaven
splintering into hail and hurricane.
He reckons, if the heavy seas continue,
better to scud for harbor than remain.

Often the gusts are such, no likely headway
for any craft until the wind's about,
just as the latch that lets us in the closet
won't necessarily lift to let us out.
I fell in love like this: such tides of pleasure
out of your nature to my nature flowed.
Displeasure works the other way: to un-love.
Never expect to see me on that road.

More chance you'll find a mackerel in the greenwood,
lions that snort and frolic far at sea,
than for this love, come rain or shine, to falter,
only assured of this: you're pleased with me.
I know you know the knowing ways to know me,
and, known for what I am, no labor's lost
of all that grief and heartbreak in your service.
Love, taken note of, flares. A holocaust.

If I've been undemonstrative in loving
don't for a moment think I'm low on love.
Come well of it, come ill, my heart's a furnace
burning as hot as bluest June above.
In this I'm not at fault. Call love the culprit;
tangle with him, who schemes to keep me hid
(shy servant that I am) for my destruction.
Love on the lover blames what loving did.

My will and reason, hand in glove together,
conclude a pact: integrity of soul
is what they covet, unconcerned if body
sink pale and meager overnight. Such toll
in flesh the lack of sleep demands - in turn though
doubles the wit to meditate on love.
The blubber-paunch all logy with his pudding
gets nowhere on the athletic heights above.

O Soul-Of-Thought: bestow a loaf's-end only
of that sweet bread takes bitterness away.
I've nausea now for all food else - excepting
what's bought with love. That currency I'll pay.

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


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