Translating Poems

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Sep 25, 2012 23:59
Have you ever read Raymond Carver's poems? Some people would have read his short stories, but I think not so many people have read his poems. He became popular in Japan because most of his books were translated by a great Japanese novelist, Haruki Murakami. Once he translates or recommends a book, then that book becomes popular in here. I could read so many great books because of him.

Raymond Carver is one of my favourite authors. I found his collection of poems today in a book shop near my office. But that book was translated by someone I've never heard of. I didn't know that there is a Carver's book translated by not Murakami. I turned a page and read my favourite one. But it has quite different atmosphere.

Murakami is now pretty famous as an author all over the world. But in Japan, he regards as a talented translator as well. I compared both, and I think his translation is way ahead of others. But it's no wonder. He interviewed Mr. Carver many times because he's a huge fan of him. He also reads a lot about him and understands Mr. Carver very well. So it stands to reason that his translation is brilliant. I think when you translate something, you should try to become the person who wrote the text by various means.

However, I must admit that Murakami's Japanese is very beautiful and skillful. Here is the original poem. If you are a lazy person like me, you would understand this, probably. The following is two Japanese translations.


Woke up this morning with
a terrific urge to lie in bed all day and read.
Fought against it for a minute.

Then looked out the window at the rain.
And gave over. Put myself entirely
in the keep of this rainy morning.

Would I live my life over again?
Make the same unforgivable mistakes?
Yes, given half a chance. Yes.
黒田恵美子(Translated by Emiko Kuroda)>


そして、降参した。 このすっかりを任せよう。


村上春樹 (Translated by Haruki Murakami)>