Me parece que el traducir de una lengua a otra es como quien mira los tapices flamencos por el revés, que aunque se ven las figuras, están llenas de hilos que las oscurecen, y no se ven con la lisura y tez del haz; y el traducir de lenguas fáciles, ni arguye ingenio ni elocución, como no le arguye el que traslada ni el que copia un papel de otro papel––dijo don Quijote.
Y aún así le dije a Enrique Fierro, simpatizante de los rinocerontes––Tomemos prestada la pelota de ping-pong de nuestros amigos Lorenzo y Margarita, y aquí escribámonos y traduzcámonos el uno al otro. Pero, tejamos reversos, traducciones traidoras, como falsos amigos, des faux amis que se miran, pero no se reconocen.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Lorenzo and Margarita's, and of course Marta's, untranslatable gratísima compañía, Fierro seeing his earth lit with salt, his verses ringing from Miami's SW95th St. to its downtown and into the sea, reaching to his fingers, provoking, unpacifying a rhinoceros almost dormant, just in time to catch a flight to Mexico, the land where his love is, and to dance the polka in lines leading nowhere, meaning nowhere yet known, therefore forwarding the charge towards lands some critic cannot know, until they're known. Those commentators, yes, they do drive somewhere, map in hand, like to Jones Beach or to Iguazú, conducing souvenir key chains.

Decapitate, heads and tails. "Heads," Rosencrantz successfully repeated ninety-two times, in the same way Fry's frequent demassified anagrams too often tend to nix hope, but then on the third day re-rearrange themselves to their original splendor. Picture Salto in 1879, then jump two years later to a two-year old Quiroga, promenaded down Uruguay St. in all his infancy. Someone surely died due to that Scheherazade number.

And from symmetry in digits back again to the inevitable era of the lexically palindromic: "Deems Ida's was diamond, Amon alit, or reify Fierro til a nomad, no maid, saw Sadi's meed." Unknowable invention of products enclosed in ferruginous bars demanding two days of thesis energy, all for seventeen prodded words. What Amon and Sadi must be saying now, not to mention Ida... and worse, Fierro. And of even more limited, and phonetic, creativity: "In train or other, too unforgettable. What a mall! Take us tea to mount air, rose, so in carloads he lets us."

Desdemona, Machado de Assis translated to Capitu, which Ida and María Elena considered an optimal name for a cat, though Bento would surely dissent opting for Grimalkin instead, perhaps later even deciding that to be a more appropriate name for a wife. But for more on prescriptivist names for cats... and descriptivist names for wives, ask Eduardo, authority on the proper, and on the improper.

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