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"Awen yn codi o'r cudd ac yn cydio'r cwbl"
- Waldo Williams
(Awen arising from hiding and everything binding)

Translating Gerallt Lloyd Owen (2)

Constructing the translation of a poem on-line seems, so far, to be a venture worth pursuing. Having all the mis-takes and bad drafts 'on the record' and giving others the chance to comment, certainly provides a new focus on the process of literary translation. Here, anyway, is my revised draft of the opening section of 'Cilmeri'. While not necessarily final, I do feel that enough has been done here to move on to the next section, with only a little indecision as to whether the first line should read 'Fearfully close' or 'Fearfully near'.

Fearfully close on a tree
As cold as death I see
White eye of a moon bleakly

Re-awakening the pain
Of life in his face again
Sallow-hued like a bad dream.

Presenting a wretched gape
Over the forest landscape
Hollow, despised, no escape.

I feel it in all my veins
His woe to the sky’s margins
And that his old wound remains

Even though the grave’s fingers
Can stitch flesh back together
Memory is forever.

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