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Poetry in Translation (CCCXC), ROMANIA, Adrian MUNTEANU (b. 1948, Braşov): “Ia-mă de mână! Mit 3”, “Take My Hand! – Myth 3”

April 5th, 2016 · No Comments

Forget me not, whilst trying to distinguish,

In vain, the image of an elusive cast,

As I can hardly see afar the blemish

Of distant sails and of a tilted mast…

Discard the oar and let the doubt to perish…

Give me your hand, take me afar, at last.

Rendered in English by Constantin ROMAN, London,
© 2016 Copyright Constantin ROMAN

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Tags: International Media · PEOPLE · Poetry · quotations · Translations

ETERNAL REST IN BUCHAREST (PART 1 OF 6)

March 28th, 2016 · No Comments

Sărut mâna pentru masă
C-a fost bună şi gustoasă
Şi bucătăreasa grasă.

Which, in the English vernacular translation, would more or less sound like:

Kiss your hand, Ma’am, for the pastry,
And the meal, which was so tasty,
For the coffee and all that,
As the cook was nice and fat’.

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Tags: Books · Diary · Genealogy · History · PEOPLE · quotations · Reviews · Short Stories & Cameos

ETERNAL REST IN BUCHAREST (PART 2 OF 6)

March 28th, 2016 · No Comments

The King? What King? I thought you were a republic and just shot one president to replace him with another, I said tartly
– This is His Majesty the King of Romania. He is the guest of His Beatitude the Archbishop of Argesh and is coming to visit the royal graves at the monastery in the Carpathians. The King and his family were specifically assigned these rooms and the hotel will be full with the Press from abroad and dignitaries.
The King of Romania! How very odd – he was turned away before by the new Communist President and marched off all the way to the airport under military escort to have him expelled from the country: only the year before! The old commies were still afraid that he might command some unwelcome popular support and overthrow the rascals who usurped the power after Ceausescu.

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Tags: Books · Diary · Diaspora · International Media · PEOPLE · quotations · Short Stories & Cameos

ETERNAL REST IN BUCHAREST (part 3 OF 6)

March 27th, 2016 · No Comments

Still, during the dictatorship years the Continental was no more than a gilded cage for tourists, a kind of ghetto, where all foreign visitors were huddled together, as they were easier to keep in check. A hub of Securitate operatives and professional prostitutes were at hand. A mall of hard-currency shops, where luxury goods could be bought only with dollars, were completing the landscape. Dollars were at the time a currency, which native Romanians were not allowed to obtain: if found out, or denounced, they could spend years in prison.

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Tags: History · PEOPLE · quotations · Reviews · Short Stories & Cameos

ETERNAL REST IN BUCHAREST (PART 4 OF 6)

March 26th, 2016 · No Comments

Mr Professor Sir, you are English, aren’t you? But you are also a little bit Romanian!
– No, I am British – I am not English, because I was not born in England and I am naturalised British. What’s all about?
That baffled Vlad, like most Continentals could not make the difference between English and British, so I enquired:
– But why are you asking this all of a sudden?
– Because, Mr Professor Sir, you are also a little Romanian and you criticise too much all these things, the potholes in the road and everything.
Now I got the gist: I offended Vlad’s national pride and he was going to teach me a lesson: he was going to give me a fright by the way of retribution.

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Tags: Books · Genealogy · Genealogy · History · PEOPLE · Short Stories & Cameos

ETERNAL REST IN BUCHAREST (PART FIVE OF SIX)

March 26th, 2016 · No Comments

I remember grandfather was telling me that before the war there was a kind of popular bistro across the road from the Bellu Orthodox cemetery whose name was “Better here than Opposite’ (Mai bine aici decat vis-à-vis). This was very handy because the mourners, instead of going all the way to the home of the dearly departed, for the traditional post-funeral meal, they would instead have the drinks across the road from the cemetery, once the funeral was over and the alms given to the poor. And so there was so much merry-making at the bistro, with gypsy brass band and even dancing – all of course in memory of the deceased, that people started complaining for the lack of decorum, especially as the mourners were approaching the cemetery gate with the hearse and all and they were hearing were the fiddles and bassoons playing away drinking songs…
Eventually the police shut the establishment and now it is all history!

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Tags: Books · Diary · Diaspora · Genealogy · History · PEOPLE · Short Stories & Cameos

ETERNAL REST IN BUCHAREST (PART SIX OF SIX)

March 26th, 2016 · No Comments

– There was this stranger, who joined us during the service, attracted by Angelica’s surname: she thought that it was the same family as that of “Prince Lambrino” and assumed that you, as chief mourner, you were the Prince himself! So I reassured her that you were, indeed, the real thing!
– God forbid! Perish the thought!
For a split second I believed that Aunt Angelica’s funeral turned into a scene from Eugene Ionesco’s Theatre of the Absurd, one that my Aunt, as a blue stocking, will have enjoyed.
– Farewell Angelica and God bless you!

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Tags: Diary · Genealogy · Genealogy · History · PEOPLE · quotations

POETRY IN TRANSLATION (CCCLXXXIX), Nichita STĂNESCU (1933-1983), ROMANIA: “Vitraliu”, “Stained Glass”

March 23rd, 2016 · No Comments

Când te vei trezi, lipiţi de geamuri,
arlechini din sticle colorate
vor lăsa prin ei să-ţi cadă-n braţe
soarele, mereu la jumătate.
As you will find it, early in the morning,
the arlequin will start his joyful dancing:
as all resplendent sunrays will be donning
the immortality in which you will be basking.
Rendered in English by Constantin ROMAN, London,
© 2016 Copyright Constantin ROMAN

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Tags: Books · Famous People · International Media · PEOPLE · Poetry · quotations · Translations

POETRY IN TRANSLATION (CCCXXXVII): Pablo NERUDA (1904-1973), CHILE – “Ode to Age”, “Odă Bătrâneţii”

March 23rd, 2016 · No Comments

Now,
time, I roll you up,
I deposit you in my
bait box
and I am off to fish
with your long line
the fishes of the dawn!
Acum a sosit
timpul să te înfăşor,
să te pun în
cursă
si să pescuiesc
cu undiţa ta lungă
peştii zorilor.
Rendered in Romanian by Constantin ROMAN, London

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Tags: Books · Famous People · International Media · PEOPLE · Poetry · quotations · Translations

POETRY IN TRANSLATION (CCCLXXXVIII): Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564), Italy/Tuscany: “Bătrâneţe”

March 20th, 2016 · No Comments

În cursul vieţii lungi ce am avut
Bătrâna barcă vântul a-nfruntat
S-ajungă-n portul unde-a ancorat
Să ispăşesc păcate din trecut.

Mânat de fantezia mea şi arta
Din care am creat un Dumnezeu
Iluziile şi vanitatea, tot mereu
M-au amăgit, ademenindu-mi soarta.

Visul de-amor acum e prea puţin…
Ce-oi deveni, să mor de două ori,
O dat-aici şi-o alta la răscruce …

Sculptura, arta nu mai pot să-nchin
Când Duhul Sfânt mă chiamă-n zi de zori
Să fiu martir cu braţele pe cruce.
Rendered in Romanian by Constantin ROMAN, London,
© 2016 Copyright Constantin ROMAN

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Tags: Books · Famous People · International Media · PEOPLE · Poetry · quotations · Translations