A translation

A couple of years ago, around the time that I started writing more frequently and sending work out to magazines, I became interested in translation.
I found some poems by  Italian poet Andrea Inglese and since I liked what I saw, decided to sit down with a dictionary and have try translating one or two.
I should say that I had the advantage of  speaking a little Italian, but I am by no means fluent in the language. Today I rediscovered the translations on my computer and became once more engrossed in them, using the work I’d done two years ago and trying alternatives. The poem I’ve posted here is not a literal translation but it is close to the original. I have attempted to convey  the sensuality of the poem, to keep the ‘voice’ and I’ve also tried not to disrupt the form.  The original Italian version below is from ‘ Inventari’ by Andrea InglesePublished by Editrice Zona, 2001

Us Two Together

The two of us together don’t need
dreams, sagas, rites, legends
or stringed instruments, we don’t need
enamel, stucco or porcelain;
the whorls of our fingers are as unique
as the auditory canal under its shell
that grazed by hand or tongue tip
sends blood rushing.
Breath, saliva and fingertips
cast shadows in our eyes;
we are assured,  sedated
to the depths of our vessels,
their tunnels and pleats,  the tip
and tint of fabric, the folds and linings
of our skins. On this altar hoarse cries
and fevered whispers are sacraments
escaping our lips. Here
all divinities are hushed and stunned,
learning from us, spasm after spasm,
of terrestrial nourishment.

Noi Due Assieme 

Noi due assieme non abbiamo bisogno
di sogni, né di saghe, leggende, riti,
strumenti ad arco, non abbiamo
bisogno di smalti, stucchi, porcellane,
è nitido il motivo a spirale
dei nostri polpastrelli, il foro
uditivo sormontato da una conchiglia
di carne, che sfiorata con mani
o punta di lingua irradia
ovunque la febbre, il tremore,
il precipizio del sangue, è limpido,
abbagliante il senso dei nostri
organi, è chiaro l’uso del fiato,
della saliva, del dito, delle ombre
che passano nello sguardo, è sicura,
sedativa la profondità dei varchi,
delle gallerie, delle pieghe, è buona
la superficie, la punta, la tinta
dei risvolti, la stoffa e la fodera
delle carni. Su questo altare
la bibbia sono le nostre parole
roche, sfuggite per sbaglio, le nenie
dementi. Qui le divinità, tutte,
tacciono, si spengono attònite,
imparano da noi, spasmo per spasmo,
i nutrimenti terrestri.


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