Wuthering Heights

“Historians of literary translation have often noted a strange phenomenon: although an original text still gives us pleasure even centuries after it was written, almost all translations age quickly.  Why translations should be more time-bound than literary works of art remains a mystery…” -Breon Mitchell From Wuthering Heights: …I know, by instinct, his reserve springsContinue reading “Wuthering Heights”

When publishers make strange title translation choices

O anda duyuyor sesi.  Arnavut kaldırımında yankılanan adımlar.  Emin olamıyor onca gürültünün arasında.  Evet, ayak sesleri.  Yoksa kendi adımlar mı?  Hızını düşürmeden kulak kesiliyor.  Sokağı, karanlığı, geceyi dinliyor.  Ömürlerini çoktan doldurmuş bu evlerin, çürümüş mezar taşlarını andıran duvarlarında yankılanan ayak seslerini.  Temkinli, dikkatli, sinsi biri tarafından atılan adımların tekinsiz seslerini.  Evet, biri var arkasında.  GölgesiniContinue reading “When publishers make strange title translation choices”

No one can read it now but archivists & activists

If you do not know much about them, Illitan and Besź sound very different.  They are written, of course, in distinct alphabets.  Besź is in Besź: thirty-four letters, let to right, all sounds rendered clear and phonetic, consonants, vowels and Demi-vowels decorated with diacritics — it looks, one often hears, like Cyrillic (though that isContinue reading “No one can read it now but archivists & activists”

The closest “crosshatching”

“Corwi?” “Boss?” “You know that area: is there any chance we’re looking at breach?” There were seconds of silence. “Doesn’t seem likely.  That area’s mostly pretty total.  And Pocost Village, that whole project, certainly is.” “Some of GunterStrász, though…” “Yeah but.  The closest crosshatching is hundreds of meters away.  They couldn’t have…” It would haveContinue reading “The closest “crosshatching””

Science is a candle in the dark

We wait for light, but behold darkness. ISAIAH 59:9 Işığı bekliyor, fakat karanlığa sığınıyoruz.  İŞAYA 59:9 It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness. ADAGE Karanlığı lanetlemektense, bir mum yakmalıyız.  ÖZDEYİŞ  All our science, measured against reality, is primitive and childlike — and yet it is the most precious thing weContinue reading “Science is a candle in the dark”

A compass / Una brújula

A compass / Una brújula by Jorge Luis Borges  All things are really only words in a tongue of endless gobbledegook that someone or something is writing in a book that is the history of the world. In herds, you, I, everyone, Carthage, Rome travel, and my unfathomable life too, and this stigma of havingContinue reading “A compass / Una brújula”

Aquí – Here – Burada

Aquí – Here – Burada by Octavio Paz Mis pasos en esta calle Resuenan En otra calle My footsteps in this street Echo In another street Adımlarım bu caddede Yankılanır Başka bir caddede Donde Oigo mis passos Pasar en esta calle Donde Sólo es real la niebla Where I hear my footsteps Passing in thisContinue reading “Aquí – Here – Burada”

Where the hall ended

Excerpted from Love in the Days of Rebellion, by Ahmet Altan, English translation by Brendan Freely and Yelda Türedi He’d been in this large hall twice before, but his knowledge of the palace ended where the hall ended, he’d never seen anything of the palace beyond that point.  There was a small room behind theContinue reading “Where the hall ended”