Sunday 6 August 2006

Get out of that Cocoon

In all appearances, of course,
I am a man full-grown.
Then again, as they say
appearances are deceptive.

For in me there are
at the same time:
a child, a grown up
and even an old man.

The old man makes me think.
Made old by the burden
of experience and knowledge.
(All still within the classroom yet).

The grown up makes me
...um he makes me survive.
Compete, contest, strive,
to use a cliche:
run in the rat race.

But it is the child
I like the most.
He is the one
that makes me
want to live.
Really live.

To enjoy
the rain, the flowers,
the smell of wet earth.
To watch and wonder
at the industrious ants,
the caterpillar, the rat even.

He goes around tying rakhis
for raksha bandhan.
He'll send you
an eclair
(or better, a rose)
in that first burst
of youthful love.
He's the one
that will be optimistic
about giving his heart
and getting another in exchange.

He is the one inside me,
that really does all the living.
The old man's cynicism,
the grown up's
...er...grownupism -
all that is just a shell.
A shell to stay alive in.

But that guy there,
and you, and me.
We all are just our childhoods
bottled up
in our pupae - aren't we?

I don't know about others.
I am going to cast off my cocoon.
I'm going to remain a child forever.
Do you want to join in?

Let's. Let's do.
All that we no longer do.
Let's play again
at what we want to be.
Firemen, engine-drivers, pilots.
Not doctors or chartered accountants.

Lets have birthdays
with toys and new clothes.
red day and green day and purple day
and eclair day and friendship day.

So here's the child in me
calling to the child in you:
Let's get a life again!

Saturday 5 August 2006

Transcreating a Spanish hymn

Transcreating a piece from one language to another is not very easy, but it
is a better thing to do than merely translate. The translator is but a
linguist, loyal more to the medium than the message. It is the transcreator
who adopts the spirit of the message, and moulds the new language of
expression around it.

Here's a Spanish hymn, and my attempt at a transcreation here:-

No soy un visionario,
No soy revolucionario.
Pero soy un hombre simple,
que espera un mejor mañana.

Soño esperanza
y canto este himno.

Creo que el sol brillará
y las tinieblas saldrán.
Creo en rosas rojas
y amor y de la paz.

Soño esperanza
y canto este himno.

Creo que los humanos
todos los seres humanos
serán libres un día;
libres, e iguales.

Soño esperanza
y canto este himno.


I am not some big-hat thinker
nor some eternal rebel.
I'm just your regular guy
wanting a better day tomorrow.

I believe there'll be light again
and the clouds will disperse.
There will be red roses and love
and all the happy things of life.

Someday all human beings
All people in all lands
Will be free;
free and happy.

I can only hope in my dreams
and sing this song.

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