I was thinking aobut all these conversations about Conversations and your seeing my seeing your world in my eyes or you seeing your seeing of the world in mine, and me seeing your seeing my world in your eyes, and translations and translatabitlity of worlds constructed from Forms of glimpses, glances, touch, text, voice. Ready made forms of Language of glimpses, voice, text, body. The Forms for distinguishing, marking of, the unsayable richness of humanness and locking parts of that richness into ready-madeness of translatability (after all I will never know how it feels like for a woman to have an orgasm. The best I can do with is some sort of medium of transletability from the actual Orgasm to it's representation in Forms of glimpses, glances, touch, text, voice...)
So to see what I can do with this (translatability and not orgasm) I have taken few sentences to translate from Polish into English. I got my copy of 'Ferdydurke' by Witold Gombrowicz in Polish and (just arrived from Amazon) copy in English translated by Danuta Borchardt and compared a short passage. I decided to make my own translation to see how I could say it in English. At first I translated the whole thing in less than 5 minutes. Then I labored on two sentences for 2 hours trying to make it closer to how I read it. I was engaged in the battle of Forms (since Ferdydurke is very much about Forms and how humans stuff other humans humanness into predefined Forms... well, it's a great book, written in 1937, translated from Polish few years ago.)
Anyway, here is my Loosely joined translation from Polish circa March of 2003:
"... it happens sometimes,that a morbid dream takes us to a land where everything mires, bogs and chokes us because it reminds us about the t i m e of o u r y o u t h - so young, therefore too old for us, out-of-date and anachronic. No torment could ever equal the torment of such a dream, such a land. There can be nothing more horrifying than to revisit the matters which one has outgrown, those old, adolescent, matters of immaturity once pushed aside, filed and closed... for example the matter of innocence. Oh, threefold wise are those who live solely concerned with current events, with the concerns of adults in the prime of their life, leaving outdated and worn out problems to old shrews. Because the choice of problems to address and be concerned with is immenseley important to individuals and to entire nations, yet so often we'll witness that an astute and mature person confronting mature matters becomes, in the flick of an eye, painfully immature when interjected with matters too childish or too oldish - and incompatible with the spirit of the times and the rythms of history. Truly, there is no easier way of inflicting naiveté and infantilizing humanity than by insinuating those kinds of concerns"
Here is Danuta's translation
"...Sometimes a morbid dream will take us to a land where everything chokes us, corrupts and inhibits us because it pertains to the t i m e of o u r y o u t h and is therefore young, yet it has now become outworn, old, and archaic, and there is no torment equal to the torment of such a dream, such a land. There is nothing more horrible than to delve into issues one has long outgrown, the old issues of youth and immaturity that have long since been pushed into a corner and settled... for example the question of innocence. Oh, threefold wise are they who live solely by today's concerns, the concerns of maturity and of the prime of life, leaving outdated problems to elderly aunts. Because making the choice as to the subject matter and the issues one will address is immensely important to the individual, just as it is to entire nations, and we so often see that a person who is mature and sagacious in his dealings with mature matters becomes, in the twinkling of an eye, painfully immature when confronted with matters that are too puerile or too far in the past- and incompatible with the spirit of the times and the rhythm of history. Truly, there is no easier way of inflicting naivete and infatilizing than by presenting it with problems of this kind"
I will spare you the Polish version.
Before we proceed with the rest of this essay please give me some feedback on two versions and what you saw in the Forms presented.