1. Mr.Dent

    Mr.Dent Senior Member

    English American
    The term "crushed angel" comes from a mystical poem by Hafiz. The literal translations (machucado, aplastado, etc.) for "crushed" don't fit. "Crushed angel" refers to a soul who has been significantly deprived and damaged by having to live in this creation, separated from the Lord.

    The original text:
    You have waltzed with great style,
    My sweet, crushed angel,
    To have ever neared God's heart at all.

    Mi intento:
    Has bailado con gran estilo,
    Mi dulce caido/pobre/herido/roto angel.
    por haber acercado el corazon de Dios en absoluto.

    Francamente no me gusta ningunos de mi intentos. Does anyone have a suggestion?

    PS
    Waltzed is used here in a figurative sense -- not literal.
     
  2. gengo

    gengo Senior Member

    San Francisco
    American English
    How do you know what the poet meant by the word? Without any additional knowledge, I would say that it is indeed aplastado, in the sense of the angel having been flattened under the pressures of this world. But then, I don't believe in angels, so what do I know?
     
  3. Mr.Dent

    Mr.Dent Senior Member

    English American
    This comes from a discourse given in English for which I was providing simultaneous translation. The interpretation of the poem was provided by the speaker. Of course I can not really know what the poet meant. However, I do know what the speaker meant, and that is what I presented in my post.

    I had 2 other translators in the booth with me (We take turns, each of us going for 15 minutes at a time.) During simultaneous translation there is really no time to think about alternate translations of a word. I actually used the word "aplastado" in my translation. But afterwards when we were discussing it, both of the other translators, who are by the way native speakers, disliked the use of the word "aplastado". However, I didn't like their suggestion: "caído". So we never reached an agreement.

    As far as angels are concerned, the word was being used in a figurative sense during the discourse. That is to say that all of us are angels living in separation from God.
     
  4. iribela Senior Member

    USA
    Spanish - Uruguay
    I can see how aplastado would not be the best choice, but under the circumstances it's understandable. As far as caído, it might sound "more poetic" than aplastado but it's not on par with 'crushed', which, given your explanation, I see closer to abatido, perhaps quebrantado. More importantly, if we speak of 'ángel caído' (fallen angel) we'd be referring to the "bad" angels, expelled from heaven, as I recall, and I don't think that's the kind of angel the author/speaker mentions, right? I don't believe in god or angels but I take it when you say 'we are angels living in separation...' it's in reference to this temporary separation, not to humans being fallen angels.
     
  5. Mr.Dent

    Mr.Dent Senior Member

    English American
    Thanks Iribela. You always have excellent suggestions. I think "abatido" is perfect.
     
  6. Elixabete Senior Member

    Basque
    "Abatido" means "crestfallen", you would be referring to the feeling someone gets after being crushed. However, if you want to focus on the fact that this angel has been crushed, that life / the world have been harsh on him I would use " oprimido".
    As for the rest, I am not sure whether "to" can be used in that sense , but shouldn't you have translated it as "para" ? :
    Has danzado con mucho estilo
    Mi dulce ángel oprimido
    Para no haberte acercado nunca al corazón de Dios.
    ( Even if he has never met God, and life has crushed him the angel has managed to deal with his/ her lot in style/ gracefully)
    Or even ( and perhaps more logically):
    Has danzado con mucho estilo
    mi dulce ángel oprimido
    como para que no te hayas acercado al menos alguna vez al corazón de Dios
    ( You have danced so well little crushed angel that you must have come close to God's heart at least once )
    It might be the case that I'm altogether wrong, but I'm afraid your translation ( por haber acercado el corazón de Dios en absoluto) doesn't make much sense in Spanish.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2017
  7. Mr.Dent

    Mr.Dent Senior Member

    English American
    Thanks a lot Elixabete. Very helpful.
     
  8. iribela Senior Member

    USA
    Spanish - Uruguay
    If you are looking at abatido purely as an adjective, you do find it associated with crestfallen or dejected, but look at it as a verb and I think it has the right nuance. Personally, I associate the oppressed with people in a different context. And while being oppressed might end up crushing your spirit, the sense I derive from oprimido is one of a constant, or ongoing, condition, in contrast to the finality of being crushed. I'm not completely sold on 'abatido/quebrantado,' but as of yet I can't come up with another idea, and, needless to say, as a translator, I'm crushed ;) (I'll come back if I think of something). "broken"?
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2017
  9. gengo

    gengo Senior Member

    San Francisco
    American English
    Got it. By the way, I can only admire with awe anyone who can interpret simultaneously. I have done a little consecutive interpretation in Japanese, but even that was too hard for me. Of course, with J-E you have to wait until the end of the J sentence to learn the tense and negative/positive, so a simultaneous interpreter has to store the current sentence in his buffer memory while interpreting the previous sentence, which is beyond my ability. My personality is more suited to translation, which allows me time to think of the best way to phrase the idea.

    My virtual hat is off to you, Mr. Dent.

    As to "crushed," we should remember that the word sounds odd in English, so it should sound equally odd in Spanish.
     
  10. Elixabete Senior Member

    Basque
    Same here!
     
  11. Mr.Dent

    Mr.Dent Senior Member

    English American
    The discourses are always on similar themes, so the basic vocabulary and phrases are similar from week to week. And it is not a court of law, so there is some leeway as long as the essence of the words is communicated. It was a great challenge for me when I started doing it, but I have come to enjoy it. And, it has caused my Spanish speaking ability to skyrocket.
     

Share This Page

Loading...