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Paul Verlaine

(1844-1896 / France)

Autumn Song


With long sobs
the violin-throbs
of autumn wound
........................
........................
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  • T Wignesan (8/24/2013 8:48:00 AM)

    Hi! Sandra! You're right about the translations: one, under the French title, should be discarded. It's unfaithful. The other with the original given there-below is alright but that, too, takes liberties with Verlaine. Reactions like yours don't say more than the appeal the poem makes to your own make-up, the way I see it, but it is an elegantly-shaped lyrical poem in a tripartite tonic and syllabic structure which lays claim to quiet sentimental recall and tender moments experienced by the persona's soul. The image of the dead leaf adheres well with the theme, and I do think it's very well executed. The plaintive tone of violins tugging at heart strings, on the other hand, is quite commonplace, don't you think? But the poem has its limits. One can't do very much - unless one has recourse to cryptic and allusive haiku or tanka - in mainly three to four syllables in each line, even if the symmetry (hardly perfect) is maintained in the stanzas. Every good wish. Wignesan (Report) Reply

  • Sandra Feldman (3/31/2013 12:27:00 AM)

    One of the most silmp[e, beautiful; and touching poems ever writen The translation does not do it justice. It is worth kowning French just to be able to read it, feel it and understand it. (Report) Reply

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