Dans une vue, au coeur d'une ville de rêve / poême

melancolique

Senior Member
english;america
salut tout,

j'aun une poeme et je pense que je la comprend mais peut-etre non.

au secours?

'Dans une rue, au coeur d'une ville de reve
ce sera comme quand on a deja vecu:...
un instant a la fois tres vague et tres aigu...
o ce soleil parmi la brume qui se leve!'
--paul verlaine


en aglais, je crois...

'In a view, at the heart of a dream city/city's dream
it was when we already knew
an instant in time very vague and very precise
o this sun parts the mist as it rises'

i know i probably murdered it with that interpretation, but its so beautiful i'm dying to know the exact meaning.

merci!
 
  • melancolique

    Senior Member
    english;america
    beautiful, isn't it? It's on a watercolor I got off of this old eccentric artist on the streets of paris.

    lovely.

    help help help help
     

    melancolique

    Senior Member
    english;america
    merci-- oui, le "r" semble un "v"

    je vais chercher "Kaleidoscope" maintenant, lets mots sont vraiment beaux.

    mais, en anglais, c'est quoi la poeme?


    [je suis desolee pour ma grammaire]
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Well, I'm no great shakes at translating poems, but I can see a few things that I might be able to help with:

    In a (I would say) scene, in the heart of a city from a dream
    It will be as if one has always lived (there)
    A moment at the same time very vague and very precise
    O this sun amidst the fog that rises!


    That would be my best guess, with a clear caveat that it's only a best guess. In my experience, poems don't translate well if you try to stick too closely to the original words. They literally lose a lot in translation. :)

    la grive - thanks so much for the link to the entire poem. It's very beautiful.

    - James
     

    mgarizona

    Senior Member
    US - American English
    What the hell, I love a challenge. Something like:

    In a street in the heart of a city of dreams
    It will be just like when it has already been :
    A moment at once both unclear and acute ...
    O this sun amid the rising fog.

    Sorry for not being able to save the nice wholeness of the rhythm, or the rhyme. Give me a week. (Just kidding)

    If background interests you at all, my volume of Verlaine suggests that he wrote this poem while still in prison for shooting Rimbaud(whence the future tense). It's addressed to Germain Nouveau and regards a proposed trip to London, where Verlaine had "already been" with Rimbaud.
     

    melancolique

    Senior Member
    english;america
    woops.
    "Song lyrics may be quoted up to a maximum of four lines. Members are welcome to post links to complete lyrics, but may not copy extensive quotations to these forums for copyright legal reasons. Threads and posts with song lyric quotations beyond four lines will be removed. "


    my bad. WELL if anyone would like to try and translate the whole thing I think that would be a great way to work through a lot of questions both french-speakers and english-speakers have. So have a gander at that link posted by la grive if you want to translate it!

    I'm still working on it... is it an old poem? the language is .... hard.
     

    jimreilly

    Senior Member
    American English
    Well, I should think it's out of copyright by now, so don't worry about being bad, mademoiselle de Minnesota (je suis aussi de Minnesota).

    I like the other translations. I'll have a try too:

    Dans une rue, au coeur d'une ville de rêve,
    Ce sera comme quand on a déjà vécu:
    Un instant à la fois très vague et très aigu...
    O ce soleil parmi la brume qui se lève!

    On a street in the heart of a dream city,
    It will be as just it was when lived before:
    an instant at once both very indistinct and very clear...
    O, this sun surrounded by the rising mist!


    It makes one think of the many paintings of London and the Thames (and other places) of the sun and the fog/mist done by Turner, Whistler, and the Impressionists.

    As far as how old the poem is, you have Verlaine's dates on the link. You have stumbled upon a very famous poet dear to the heart of many other poets, painters, and musicians. Someday listen to the Debussy songs to texts by Verlaine. Now you will have Verlaine with you for what I hope will be a very long adventure in French poetry and culture! And with a name like Mélancolique you will find much to like in Verlaine.

    I'd love to try to translate the whole thing, but there is another life calling.....I bet the Minneapolis Public Library has a translation somewhere in its wonderful new building.
     

    Kat LaQ

    Senior Member
    English, USA
    OK - I had to try...

    In a street in the heart of a dreamed city
    It will be just as it was before:
    An instant at once hazy and sharp...
    O the sun rising out of the mist!

    I was wondering if grammatically it could be the soleil rising, not the brume, with parmi la brume being a parenthetical phrase. Poetry does often take this kind of syntactic license, non? Well, not sure if it is a possibility, but I like the way it makes the last 2 lines kind of echo each other - first the laying out the terms vague and aigu, the 2nd an illustration of those very terms.

    Very beautiful indeed. Thanks all. I bookmarked the poetry site.
     

    mgarizona

    Senior Member
    US - American English
    Kat LaQ said:
    I was wondering if grammatically it could be the soleil rising, not the brume, with parmi la brume being a parenthetical phrase. Poetry does often take this kind of syntactic license, non?
    I wouldn't think that's impossible, not in poetry anyway.

    On closer inspection though I note that la brume qui se leve would be 'lifting fog' which then, I take it, reveals the sun that had been hidden.

    So what the hell, I'll take another crack at it:

    In a street in the heart of a city of dreams,
    It shall be just as though we have lived it before :
    A moment at once both unclear and acute ...
    O sun now revealed as the fog slowly lifts !

    Tried at least to scan somewhat that time.
     

    Cath.S.

    Senior Member
    français de France
    mgarizona said:
    I wouldn't think that's impossible, not in poetry anyway.

    On closer inspection though I note that la brume qui se leve would be 'lifting fog' which then, I take it, reveals the sun that had been hidden.

    So what the hell, I'll take another crack at it:

    In a street in the heart of a city of dreams,
    It shall be just as though we have lived it before :
    A moment at once both unclear and acute ...
    O sun now revealed as the fog slowly lifts !

    Tried at least to scan somewhat that time.
    If I may, MgAz, your translation scans rather better than the original, - which is not the best stanza Verlaine ever wrote imo!
    I particularly like your first two lines. Mes plus sincères félicitations.

    I interpret o ce soleil parmi la brume qui se leve!' the same as you do: la brume disparaît graduellement, révélant le soleil. The only criticism I would formulate is that parmi is not quite translated in your version. Parmi brings to mind a landscape full of sharply delimitated zones of sunshine and mist, a sort of chiaroscuro.
     

    mgarizona

    Senior Member
    US - American English
    egueule said:
    If I may, MgAz, your translation scans rather better than the original, - which is not the best stanza Verlaine ever wrote imo!
    I particularly like your first two lines. Mes plus sincères félicitations.
    Much appreciated, thank you.

    egueule said:
    I interpret o ce soleil parmi la brume qui se leve!' the same as you do: la brume disparaît graduellement, révélant le soleil. The only criticism I would formulate is that parmi is not quite translated in your version. Parmi brings to mind a landscape full of sharply delimitated zones of sunshine and mist, a sort of chiaroscuro.
    Very nice. How about:

    O sun amidst loose lifting drifts of fog.

    Oh my, I seem to have left Verlaine behind and delivered up some pseudo-Gerard Manley Hopkins instead. Well I better stop now, this is just the sort of thing I can obsess on and lose a whole week.

    Thanks again, egueule, for the kindly nod.
     
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