Feliz cumpleaños José Zorilla

Jose_zorrilla

José Zorilla Y Moral

Spanish romantic poet José Zorilla was born on this day in 1817.  He lived a live of poetry and poverty until the very end of his days when he at last achieved recognition, a pension, honours and the post of Poet Laureate of Spain.  He was so happy with all this recognition that he died within 4 years of getting it.

I like to fool around with poetry translations.  You can’t just translate a poem word for word.  Even if it makes sense it loses all meaning.  So I have made a stab at translating this one and updating it a bit to convey the same sentiment but to make it more relevant and more accessible.

Hope you like it!

 

Ay del triste; de José Zorrilla.

¡Ay del triste que consume
su existencia en esperar!
¡Ay del triste que presume
que el duelo con que él se abrume
al ausente ha de pesar!

La esperanza es de los cielos
precioso y funesto don,
pues los amantes desvelos
cambian la esperanza en celos.
que abrasan el corazón.

Si es cierto lo que se espera,
es un consuelo en verdad;
pero siendo una quimera,
en tan frágil realidad
quien espera desespera.

 

Feck Hope; by Donal Clancy (apologies to José Zorilla)

Feck Hope!  Don’t waste this life on dreams.
Don’t wager your outcome in the game of life
in the scales of some imagined judge.

Hope, that dismal gift of the heavens
becomes a heart rending jealousy
in the clutches of restless lovers.

So what if your dreams come true anyway!
This chimera, this fragile reality
always ends in doom.  Feck Hope.