LA CADUTA [*Translation*]

‘Downfall’, by Xanadu

Tradotto in Italiano
da Gian Franco Spotti

LA CADUTA
(‘Downfall’)


Sbaglian di grosso color che dicon “i cuori non si spezzan mai”.
Si, i cuor spezzar si possono, come il dorso di un ciuccio
Appesantito dal dolor di un peso maggior.
Tutti i cuor si spezzan sotto laceranti colpi.
Pensa alle dolci parole del tuo amato amor
(Ti trovi sul balcone dell’ultimo piano):
“Ah, mia cara, se solo sapessi
Quanto ti amo! Quanto tu significhi per me!”

Lui ti bacia sulla bocca per farti volare,
Palpeggiandoti con le sue dita,
Alzandoti poi dai piedi fino al tuo grido,
Fermati! Mettimi giù!”  Poi il tuo amato
Ti scaglia oltre la ringhiera del balcone come una palla.
Così finisce la storia. Il tuo cuor nella caduta si infrange.

6 thoughts to “LA CADUTA [*Translation*]”

  1. Thank you, Gian Franco!
    Excellently translated as usual.
    My poor Italian is rapidly improving
    with every new translation you make! 🙂

    1. These Italian translations are helping me revise my Italian, which I first began to study at college in order to read Dante in the original. I don’t think any English translations of Dante, though there have been two classic ones, can be as rewarding as reading the original Italian of Italy’s greatest poet. The two classic translations I refer to are Cary’s Victorian version in Miltonic blank verse and Dorothy L. Sayers’ 20th century translation in terza rima. This is much harder to do because it involves an intricate rhyme scheme.

      I notice that Lasha Darkmoon’s original verse is always in traditional rhyme and metre. She is faithful to the rules of prosody, a much neglected art nowadays that has its roots in music and mathematics.The above poem is a classic Shakespearean sonnet consisting of 14 lines: the first part consisting of 8 lines (an ‘octave’) and the second half consisting of 6 lines (a ‘sestet’). The octave is the introduction and states the ‘problem’ or theme to be addressed; the sestet resolves the problem. the last two lines of the poem are always a rhyming couplet which acts as a ‘clincher’, as here. Writing sonnets is a skilled art. It simply cannot be done in free verse.

      Gian Franco’s translations, I notice, are always in free verse, with no attempt made at rhyme and metre, which requires far more labour and an ear for music. This is the trouble with ‘free verse’. It is best if you are aiming for linguistic accuracy, but it is useless for conveying musicality, rhythm, melody, or beautiful sound effects.

      Nowadays most accurate translations are done either in free verse or prose, as in Gian Franco’s excellent translation. I am surprised, however, that Gian does not try doing this in traditional rhyme. This would be relatively easy in Italian for the simple reason that Italian and Spanish have far more words in them that rhyme than English has. (There is no rhyme in English for example, for the word “orange”.)

      E.A. Hart
      (English teacher)

  2. Dear Mr. E.A. Hart
    to try to do in traditional rhyme is not so easy because you have to find out words that do not connect with the poem and the risk is to shift from the original sense of the poem.
    Anyway I will try to make a test on that, but I cannot guarantee it will be a success.
    Thank you however for your comments and suggestions.

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