Nov 152013
 

My erstwhile Hebrew professor told me (in somewhat gentler terms) to knock it off with the Shpanishe narishkayt already and go back to translating the Italian Hebrew poets (Sefardishe narishkayt) into English, and translating a poem a day. I guess I’ll meet him halfway, at least.

Did you know I like poetry about the sea? I like poetry about the sea. I like sea poems, and wine poems, and love poems, and ponies.

Hayim Gouri (1923 – )
Silence of the Sea

Silence of the sea.
You’ll leave but not arrive.1
Eternally.

Silence of the sea.
The divers rose
with hands empty.

To the strip of coast
are returning vanquished ships
with sunlight trailing towards the lee.

Me
the years of light
and the deep thoughts of the sea.

At last we’ll rest
our faces
the green weeds of the sea.

חיים גורי
שתיקת הים

 
שְׁתִיקַת הַיָּם.
אַתָּה תֵּלֵךְ וְלֹא תַּגִּיעַ.
לְעוֹלָם.
 
שְׁתִיקַת הַיָּם.
הַצּוֹלְלִים
חָזְרוּ רֵיקָם.
 
אֶל קַו־הַחוֹף
שָׁבוֹת סְפִינוֹת מְנֻצָּחוֹת
וְאוֹר הַשֶּׁמֶשׁ בְּגַבָּן.
 
אֲנִי
וּשְׁנוֹת הָאוֹר
וּמַחְשְׁבוֹת הַיָּם.
 
לִבְסוֹף נָנוּחַ
וּפָנֵינוּ
עֵשֶׂב־יָם.
י

Transliteration/תעתיק:

Shtiqát ha-yám.
Atáh teiléikh ve-ló tagíaʕ.
Le-ʕolám.

Shtiqát ha-yám.
Ha-tzolelím
ḥazrú reiqám.

‘El qav ha-ḥóf
Shavót sfinót menutzaḥót
ve-‘ór ha-shémesh be-gabán.

‘Aní
Ushnót ha-‘ór
u-maḥshevót ha-yám.

Livsóf nanúaḥ
u-fanéinu
ʕéisev yam.

  1. The speaker is addressing an unidentified male figure here, not the “silence of the sea” itself.

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