Shall you win a prize?
I can explain myself more or less in english & maybe sometimes it sounds a bit funny & sometimes I use the wrong expression, but I know I never can get in english that pointy like in my mother tongue German, where I exactly know the phrases & expressions, the slight difference in the use of very similar words, where I can play with words, because I know not only the grammar rules but have also a big library of memory of all the read & heard words & sentences fragments, which gives me a sure sense, about the 'use of word's' just like using chirurgical instruments precisely - I know the difference between poetical, rude, business, political & all sorts of other word use in German.
Yes it's much harder in English, because I have a much smaller library - I can express myself to get understood, but I still miss some options of putting my english words to a precise combination.. - well I trust my intuition & hope it's getting better, but I don't think I can ever express myself lyrically in English. - But at least I can see & recognize it if I read English stuff.
& if you ask me - why then, I write in English I respond: "there are little ponds & oasises & may they are nice & snug somehow - but I'm one of those fishes who needs long & wide space - yes I like to swim in the biggest pool (or is it the chinese one?) - at least I don't know a single word in chinese & my keyboard doesn't have that much signs.
I once, long time ago, wanted to translate a political proverb for an american friend (Sam, the fotographer from MA), but I couldn't get the meaning over - for him it made no sense - hmm was my translation wrong, or did the appropriate words in English not even exist? - so let me try again, whether you will get it!?
"Die dümmsten Kälber
wählen ihren Metzger selber"
(by the way: 'ü is spoken like the 'y' in typical, 'ä' is spoken like the 'a' in bat)
So I give you the words for the translation: Die = the - dümmsten = the comparative of stupid, so 'most stupid' - Kälber = calves - wählen chose (or vote for) - ihren = their - Metzger = butcher - selber = self (themselves)
so let's put it together - it's now: "the most stupid calves chose their butcher themselves" - well but this doesn't have the point in it
maybe it would be more appropriate "the most dull calves chose their butcher by own decision" - well it doesn't rhyme like in German, but does the message come over? - Does it? - Please tell me?
Long time ago (at the age of about at the age of maybe 23 - it was 1977) I wrote a little book with poetry - the starting 2-liner was:
"Ich will dir ewige Untreue schwören
und meinen Schwur dann brechen!"
(speak ö like the 'u' in 'turn')
at once I see three little problems for translation - for 'Untreue'
should I use 'disloyalty' or 'infidelity' - should I translate 'schwören' with 'swore' or 'vow' (hmm - doesn't swear also mean curse?) - 'dann' means 'then' - but maybe 'later on' would be more fitting? - Hoom! - & should I translate 'will'(in German it means 'want') with 'will' (English) or 'shall'?
So I give it a try: "I shall swear eternal disloyalty to you
and later on shall break my vow!"
Or would 'infidelity' be the better word? - I mean it's a love vow (or something like that)..
Dear Reader, whose mother language is english - why not tell me, what would be the best translation - maybe you'll win a prize..
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