April 9, 2011

NaPoWriMo Day 9: Sonnet from Mu, translated

The following is a fairly literal translation of yesterday’s sonnet from Mu. I have made no attempt to reproduce the rhyme scheme.

Get it while you can

The day grinds light’s gears down to nubs,
while we the remnant gum our minutes to savor the char,
and chews the peeling garb from nubile birches
into night’s thick paste of signs.
Under master’s eye little work of small
worth is ours, delegated to thew and khaibit;*
but when god sleeps his slaves may play
and booze with fellow grunts and ground and sky.
The moon crept naked into my room,
her hands a cool stream trickling over my skin;
we slept in River Idshabi’s icy bed,
mingling limbs and glints and undertows.
Morning came, and milkmaid Tulid rose from the sheets,
deity still shining from her pimpled skin.
— Ogbar biku Ozdil

* A term borrowed from Egyptian mythology, since English lacks a term; neither is the Egyptian word an exact fit, but it comes close. The people of Mu, like the Egyptians, postulated seven souls within each person. What’s meant here is a lower soul with little in the way of awareness, a sort of robot.


NaPoWriMo Day 8: A sonnet from Mu

The following sonnet from the lost continent of Mu is notable for many reasons, not the least being that the inhabitants of Mu apparently invented the petrarchan sonnet millennia before Petrarch.

Zhira Gambyrtha

Meswif aedluf ruhd ahndu luirm zokvort,
utminia kohtroo zdid utgantdob zao,
loed bidu vuzdel ahrintsav ypao
vazpilt sanvurd aedoi bero wort.
Ovdovon haet ugbinch witta pahndort
dahsh toobplaet, wom elret ihzwass tumao;
juhdtah tahn oofell pluhth adzbahl zellao
darrah wooltshib midzbuhg ehd rehtin port.
Dunverd ehrag zemhijle evnezgess,
hunnan ebrinnud chamzanto wasgid;
ohlrag zdahdcol dusshun hanucharess,
wuzdilt Idshabi zavag, uttir wasmid.
Riigtad Tulid harr ih hartseless,
sahr uhd aben ubulg antilimid.
— Ogbar biku Ozdil

Day 9: the translation!

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