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[Ezra Pound]


Lament of the frontier guard
Lament del guardia fronterer]

Lamento del guardia de la frontera]

Canto XXI


Lament of the frontier guard

By the North Gate, the wind blows fill of sand,
Lonely from the beginning of time until now!
Trees fall, the grass goes yellow with autunm. 
I climb the towers and towers 
                   to watch out the barbarous land:
Desolate castle, the Sky, the wide desert.
There is no wall left to this village.
Bones white with a thousand frosts,
High heaps, covered with trees and grass;
Who brought this to pass?
Who has brought the flaming imperial anger?
Who has brought the army with drums and with kettle-drums?
Barbarous kings.
A gracious spring. turned to blood-ravenous autumn.
A turmoil wars-men, spread over the middle kingdom.
Three hundred and sixty thousand,
And sorrow, sorrow like rain.
Sorrow to go, and sorrow, sorrow returning. 
Desolate, desolate fields, 
And no children of warfare upon them,
                          No longer the men for offence and defence.
Ah, how shall you know the dreary sorrow at the North Gate,
With Riboku' s name forgotten,
And we guardsmen fed to the tigers.

Li Po

[Versió anglesa traduïda per Ezra Pound a partir d'unes traduccions de l'obra de Li Po fetes per Enest Fenollosa amb l'ajut dels erudits japonesos Mori i Ariga]


Lament del guardia fronterer

A la Porta Nord hi bufa un vent sorrenc,
solitari des de l'inici del temps fins ara!
Cauen els arbres, l'herbei s'esgrogueeix amb la tardor.

Jo m'enfilo de torre en torre
         per tal de vigilar la terra dels bàrbars:
castell desolat, el cel, l'ample desert
No queda un mur dempeus en aquest pobl
Ossos esblanque
ïts per mil gebrades,
túmuls alts, coberts d'arbres i d'herba;
qui acab
à amb tot aixo?
Qui provoca la
flamígera fúria imperial?
Qui ha dut l'ex
èrcit amb timbals i tambors?
eis bàrbars.
Una gentil primavera esdevinguda tard
or cobejosa de sang,
un batibull de guerrers esparsos pel regne del mig,
tres-cents seixanta-mil
i sofriment, sofrirnen
t com una pluja.
Sofriment en anar-hi, i sofriment, sofriment en tornar.
Desolats, camps desolats,

i sobre ells no deixa
fills la guerra,
            ni hornes per a l'atac i la defensa.
Ah, com podreu saber l'afr
ós sofriment a la
            Porta Nord,
amb el nom de Rihaku oblidat,
i nosaltres, els guardes, pastura de
ls tigres.

[Traducció de Francesc Parcerisas en Catai Ezra Pound, Empúries, Barcelona 1985]


Lamento del guardia de la frontera

En la Puerta del Norte henchido de arena sopla el viento
¡solitario desde el inicio de los tiempos!
Caen los árboles, amarillea la hierba al impacto del otoño.
Escalo torres y torreones
                  para observar la tierra de los bárbaros:
castillo desolado, el cielo, el desierto sin fin. 
No se sostiene un muro en pie sobre la aldea.
Huesos blanquísimos inmersos en la escarcha,
grandes cúmulos cubiertos de árboles y hierba.
¿Quién provocó estos despojos?
¿Quién encendió la flamígera cólera imperial?
¿Quién trajo este ejército con tambores y atabales?
Reyes bárbaros.
Deliciosa primavera convertida en otoño ávido de sangre,
baraúnda de guerreros esparcidos por el Reino Central,
trescientos sesenta mil, .
y dolores y dolores como cae la lluvia. 
Dolores a la ida, y dolor, dolor a la vuelta. 
Desolados campos desolados,
sin huérfanos de la contienda que los crucen,
                  no más hombres de ataque y de defensa.
¡Ah!, cómo pudieras conocer la lúgubre aflicción de la Puerta del Norte,
con el nombre de Rihoku olvidado,
y nosotros los guardias pasto de los tigres. 

Li Po

[Versió castellana traduïda per Ricardo Silva Santisteban de l'original anglès que Ezra Pound va escriure a partir d'unes traduccions de l'obra de Li Po fetes per Enest Fenollosa amb l'ajut dels erudits japonesos Mori i Ariga. Dins de Cathay de Ezra Pound, Tusquets, Barcelona 1972]


Canto XXI


"Keep the peace, Borso" Where are we?
Keep on with the business
             That's made me,

 And the res publica didn't
When I was broke and a poor kid,

They all knew me, All of these cittadini

And they all of them cut me dead della Gloria"

Intestate, 1429, leaving 178,221 florins di sugello,

As is said in Cossino's red leather note book di sugello

And "with his credit emptied Venice of money"

That was Cosimo

"And Napels, and made them accept his peace."

And he caught the young boy Ficino

And had him taught the Greek language;

"With two ells of red cloth per person

I will make you", Cossimo speaking, "as many

Honest citizens as you desire."

Col credito suo...

Napoli e Venezia di danari...

Costretti... Napoli e Venizia... a  quella pace...

Or another time... oh well,cpass it.

And Piero called in the credits,

(Diotisalvi was back of that)

And firms failed as far off as Avignon,

And Piero was like to be murdered,

And young Lauro came down ahead of him, in tge road,

And said: Yes, father is coming.


Intestate, '69, in December leaving me 237,989 florins,

As you will find in my big green account book

In carta di capretto;

And from '34 when I count it, to last year,

We paid out 600,1000  and over,

That was for building, taxes and charity.

Nic Urzano saw no coming. Against it, honest,

And warned 'em. They'd have murdered him,

And would Cosimo, but he bribed 'em;

And they did in Guiliano. E difficile,

A Firenze difficile viver ricco

Senza aver costato.

"E non avendo stato Piccinino

Doveva temerlo qualunque era in stato";

And "that men sweated blood to put through that railway";

"Could you", wrote Mr. Jefferson,

Find me a gardener

Who can play the french horn?

The bounds of American fortune

Will not admid the indulgence of a domestic band of

Musicians, yet I have thought that a passion for music

Might be reconciled with that economy which we are

Obliged to observe. I retain among my domestic servants

A gardener, a weaver, a cabinet-maker, and a stone-cutter,

To which I would add a vigneron. In a country like yours

(id est Burgundy) where music is cultivated and

Practised by evry class of men, I suppose there might

Be found persons of these trades who could perform on

The french horn, clarionet, or hautboy and bassoon so

That one might have a band of two french horns, two
Clarionets, two hauboys and a bassoon without enlarging
Their domestic expenses. A certainty of employment for
Half a dozen years
       (affatigandose per suo piacer o non)
And at the end of that time, to find them, if they
Choose, a conveyance to their own country, might induce

Then to come here on reasonable wages. Without meaning to
Give you trouble, perhaps it might be practicable for you
In your ordinary intercourse with your people to find out
Such men disposed to come to America. Sobriety and good
Nature would be desirable parts of their characters"
  June 1778 Montecello

And  in July I went up toMilan for Duke Galaez

To sponsor his infant in baptism,
Albeit were others more worthy,
And took his wife a gold collar holding a diamond
That cost about 3,000 ducats on which account
That signor Galaez Sforza Visconti has wished me
To stand sponsor to all of his children.
Another war without glory and another peace without quiet

And the Sultan sent him an assassin his brother
And the Soldan of Egypt, a lion;

And he begat one pope and one son and four daughters

And an University, Pisa; (Lauro Medici)
And nearly went broke in his business,
And bought land in Siena and Pisa,
And made peace by his own talk in Napels.
And there was grass on the floor of the temple
Or where the floor of it might have been;
      Gold fades in the gloom
Under the blue-black roof, Placidia's
Of the exarchate; and we sit here

By the arena, les gradins...
And the palazzo, baseless, hangs there in the dawn
With low mist over the tide mark;
And floats there nel tramonto
With gold mist over the tide-mark.
The tesserae of the floor, and the patterns.
Fools making new shambles
               night over green ocean
And the dry black of the night.
               Night of the golden tiger,
And the dry flame in the air,
               Voices of the procession
Faint now, from below us,

An the sea with tin flash in the sun-dazzle,

                Like dark wine in the shadows.

"Wind between the sea and the mountains"

    The tree-Spheres half dark against sea half clear against sunset,

The sun's keel freighted with cloud,
And  after that hour, dry darkness
Floating flame in the air, gonads in organdy,
Dry flamelet, a pertal borne in the wind.
Gignetei kalon

Impenetrable as the ignorance of old women
In the dawn as the fleet coming in after Actium,

Shore to the eastward and altered,
And the old man sweeping leaves:
      "Damned to you Midas, Midas lacking a Pan!"
And now in the valley,
Valley under the day's edge:
       "Grow with the Pines of Ise;
As the Nile swells with Inopos.
        As the Nile falls with Inopos."
Phoibos, Turris eburnea,

         ivorvy against cobalt,

And the boughs cut on the air,
The leaves cut on the air,
The hounds on the green slope by the hill,
       water still black in the shadow.
In the crisp air,
       the discontinuous gods;
Pallas, young owl in the cup of her hand,
And, by night, the stag runs, and the leopard,
Owl-eye amid pine boughs.
Moon on the palm-leaf,
Confusion ource of renewals;

Yellow wing, pale in the moon shaft,
Green wing, pale in the moon shaft,
Pomegranate, pale in the moon shaft,
White horn, pale in the moon shaft, and Titania
By the drinking hole
steps, cut in the basalt,
Dance there Athame, danced, and there Phaethusa
With colour in the vein,
Strong as with blood-drink, once,

With colour in the vein,

Read in the smoke-faint throat. Dis caught her up.


And the old man went on there

       beating his mule with an asphodel



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