You can't miss what you forget

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by Cryokidd, Dec 3, 2010.

  1. Cryokidd New Member

    Manhattan, NY
    American English
    Ciao a tutti!

    As a means of practicing my written Italian out of the classroom, I've taken a lot of interest in translating song lyrics (Fun and educational - what's not to like?)

    Recently I've come across a song "Never Meant" by Owen, which contains the lines
    I just think it's best,
    Because you can't miss what you forget.
    So let's just pretend everything and anything
    Between you and me
    Was never meant.​

    It's that second line that's given me particular trouble: Mostly because, as I interpret it, "you" as used in this line is less of an address (2nd person singular, as it's used elsewhere in the song) and more of a general statement (almost like a 3rd person "nonspecific").

    Now, in Italian I believe this sort of idea is expressed with the si impersonale, correct? (Non si può comprare libri alla macelleria > "You/'One' can't buy books at the butcher's.")

    But the difficulty here is that Italian uses a pronominal verb for English's "to miss" - 'mancare'. The verb conjugates in agreement with what in English would be the object, while the English subject is reduced to an indirect object.

    So "I miss you" becomes Mi manchi.

    ...I know that in some cases the si impersonale becomes ci, such as with reflexives. That was the reasoning behind my tentative translation:

    Non ci può mancare quello che è scordato.


    Grazie in anticipo!
     
  2. macforever Senior Member

    Italian
    ...non puoi avere nostalgia di cio' che non ricordi.
     
  3. danalto

    danalto Senior Member

    Roma, Italia, Europa
    Italy - Italian
    My 2 cents:

    Non può mancarti ciò che hai dimenticato.:)
     

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