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  #1  
Unread 09-26-2022, 04:24 PM
Alexander Givental Alexander Givental is offline
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Default From Gennady Shpalikov

Gennady Shpalikov (1937-1974) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gennady_Shpalikov
was known mostly as a screenwriter (including some internationally acclaimed movies) of the Khrushchev's Thaw period. His poetry, modest in volume, and initially intended for private circulation, was "discovered" and published only after his death, some later put on music. This particular poem is read at the background in the movie Wounded Game https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wounded_Game
(about orphans of WWII).

To our fortune or misfortune,
Simple is the truth:
One should not revisit porches
Left behind in youth.
Even if we find our mecca
Perfectly alright,
We won't hear the sought-for echo,
Neither you, nor I.

All excursions into former
I'd at once forbid.
And, my brother, do not stir me,
Let me rest a bit.
Else – who'd venture to deter me? –
I will take a dive
On a feltboot into stormy (variant: On the valenki to stormy)
Nineteen forty-five.
In that winter, I've an inkling, (variant: In that year, I have an inkling,)
There, where – holy my! –
Will remain my mom unwrinkled
And my dad alive.*

*) Gennady's father, a military engineer, was lost in action in winter of 1945.

_____________
Edits:
S1L3: "shall" <-- "should"
S2L1,2: "I would travels to the former/Certainly forbid" <-- "All excursions into former/I'd at once forbid"
S2L-4: "I can inkle" <-- "I've an inkling"
S2L5: "return" <-- "deter"

Crib

By misfortune or by fortune,
The truth is simple:
Never return
To former places.
Even if the ashes
Look quite [OK],
What is looked for is not to be found there,
Neither by you nor by me.

The travels to the backward
I would prohibit.
And I ask you as a brother,
Don't stir my soul.
Otherwise I'll rush following the tracks --
Who would return me?
And will ride on felt-boots
To the [year of nineteen] forty five.
In the forty fifth [year], I'll guess,
There, where -- oh my god! --
[My] mom will be young,
And father alive.

The original

По несчастью или к счастью,
Истина проста:
Никогда не возвращайся
В прежние места.
Даже если пепелище
Выглядит вполне,
Не найти того, что ищешь,
Ни тебе, ни мне.

Путешествие в обратно
Я бы запретил
И прошу тебя, как брата,
Душу не мути.
А не то рвану по следу
Кто меня вернёт?
И на валенках уеду
В сорок пятый год.
В сорок пятом угадаю
Там, где — боже мой,
Будет мама молодая
И отец живой.

Last edited by Alexander Givental; 10-02-2022 at 03:40 PM.
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  #2  
Unread 09-27-2022, 11:55 AM
Carl Copeland Carl Copeland is online now
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Hi, Alexander. Thanks for introducing me to a poet I had never heard of, though I am familiar with Застава Ильича/Мне двадцать лет. Here are my comments:

S1L3: “One shall” is too formal and impersonal. I suggest “No one should” or "We should not."

S1L5: “Mecca” can be used figuratively, of course, but keep in mind that a Russian mecca will be a little odd for someone reading this in English.

S1L6: “Alright” is acceptable in informal writing, but “all right” is considered more correct. I personally have trouble hearing this kind of slant rhyme (right/I), though some poets, including Mayakovsky, seem to like them.

S2L9-10: The word order here is ok for poetry, but note that “I would travels” sounds like bad grammar until you get to the end of the sentence and figure it out. How about something like “I say travels to the former / All should be forbid”? “Former” is problematic too, however, since it sounds like “последнее,” pointing back to some previously mentioned place.

S2L11: I’m unsure about the meaning of “душу мутить,” but did you intend to turn it into a physical action? “Do not stir me,” followed by “let me rest,” is likely to be understood as “не трогайте меня.”

S2L13: “Return” isn’t quite right. You can return prisoners that you’ve captured, but the most natural wording here would be “bring me back” or “stop me.”

S2L15: “Felt boot” is odd in the singular, and the stress is off, since this isn’t a familiar expression. I suggest “On felt snow boots.”

S2L16: “Forty-five” should be hyphenated.

S2L17: I don’t think inkle/unwrinkled will work. “Inkle” is a rare verb that I’ve never seen before, and “unwrinkled” is a rather unflattering picture of the poet’s poor mother. She sounds like a prune soaked in water to remove the wrinkles.

S2L18: I’ve never heard the expression “holy my.”

That should do it.

Carl

Last edited by Carl Copeland; 09-27-2022 at 03:20 PM.
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  #3  
Unread 09-29-2022, 03:34 AM
Alexander Givental Alexander Givental is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carl Copeland View Post
Hi, Alexander. Thanks for introducing me to a poet I had never heard of, though I am familiar with Застава Ильича/Мне двадцать лет.
Застава Ильича was shelved for a long time. Perhaps the most popular Shpalikov's script (and song) is https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walkin...eets_of_Moscow

The Nikitins sing several Shpalikov's verses (usually excerpts / drafts):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=chooHDZjqPM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cpzZPfu8Q4s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPCPCSOg3Ys
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8iZCh-nDfs
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXgC2tPljQc

Quote:
S1L3: “One shall” is too formal and impersonal. I suggest “No one should” or "We should not."
OK, "One should not" shall do.

Quote:
S1L5: “Mecca” can be used figuratively, of course, but keep in mind that a Russian mecca will be a little odd for someone reading this in English.
It's not "Russian mecca", but "mecca" as a personal sacred place or site of pilgrimage.

Quote:
S1L6: “Alright” is acceptable in informal writing, but “all right” is considered more correct. I personally have trouble hearing this kind of slant rhyme (right/I), though some poets, including Mayakovsky, seem to like them.
I don't have problems with such rhymes (e.g. "my - alive" at the end), but in this place it is "norI - alright".

BTW, most of Shpalikov's rhymes in this poem disobey the "different previous consonants" rule.

Quote:
S2L9-10: The word order here is ok for poetry, but note that “I would travels” sounds like bad grammar until you get to the end of the sentence and figure it out.
Then the uncountable "travel" should do.

Quote:
“Former” is problematic too, however, since it sounds like “последнее,” pointing back to some previously mentioned place.
Hmm, this didn't occur to me! I think "into former" will break the tie.

Quote:
S2L11: I’m unsure about the meaning of “душу мутить,” but did you intend to turn it into a physical action? “Do not stir me,” followed by “let me rest,” is likely to be understood as “не трогайте меня.”
"Не мути мне душу" is a generic cliche similar to отстань, отвяжись, не приставай, иди к черту - "leave me alone". I meant "stir" in the meaning of "agitate" or "disturb" (будоражить), but somehow "don't disturb me" (why? because I am busy?) sounds wrong here.

S2L13: “Return” isn’t quite right. You can return prisoners that you’ve captured, but the most natural wording here would be “bring me back” or “stop me.”

Good point. "Deter" should do.

Quote:
S2L15: “Felt boot” is odd in the singular, and the stress is off, since this isn’t a familiar expression. I suggest “On felt snow boots.”
"valenki" should do, but "feltboot" (without the hyphen), more familiar or not, instills the right stress.

Quote:
S2L17: I don’t think inkle/unwrinkled will work. “Inkle” is a rare verb that I’ve never seen before, and “unwrinkled” is a rather unflattering picture of the poet’s poor mother. She sounds like a prune soaked in water to remove the wrinkles.
I can make it "an inkling". As about "unwrinkled" - you chose the most weird interpretation. According to Wiktionary https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/unwrinkled
"unwrinkled" is an adjective meaning "wrinkle-free" or "wrinkleless" (e.g. "an unwrinkled face") with examples from literature - when used about face or forehead. But the expressions "wrinkled man" or "wrinkled woman" are easily found on the Internet.

Quote:
S2L18: I’ve never heard the expression “holy my.”
You are right, it is not in the official list of interjections. (But now it should be added, I suppose.) I like its tone and sound - it seems right in the context, but I was hoping that native speakers can suggest something more colloquial.

Quote:
That should do it.
Thanks!

Carl[/quote]

Last edited by Alexander Givental; 09-30-2022 at 12:55 PM.
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  #4  
Unread 09-29-2022, 05:10 AM
Matt Q Matt Q is offline
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Hi Alexander,

I enjoyed reading this. I'm happy with the slant rhyme and enjoy the rhythm. I know no Russian, but my English is pretty good, so I'm going entirely on the crib.

I think it's problematic to have "mecca" replace "ashes". I can see a case for "mecca" as a place of pilgrimage -- a pilgrimage to the past -- but doing this you lose "ashes", and "ashes" tells us we are visiting ruins, something lost and unregainable and possibly even literally burned to the ground -- which mecca doesn't do. I'd say "ashes" is important to the poem and with "mecca" you lose that meaning, and in some senses maybe even suggests something different, something that still continues to exist in the present.

I reckon you need to get the ashes in, or something else to show the destruction/decay/disappearance of the past. You could go with something like:

Even if the ashes seem
Perfectly all right,
We won't find our sought-for dream
Neither you, nor I.


You also pick up some alliteration with "seem" / "sought-for". "we won't find our sought-for dream" is maybe be a bit clunky, but "seem"/"dream" seems like it could be a promising rhyme. Also, you could go with "catch" instead of "find", I guess, for the assonance with "ashes".

As Carl says, "all right" is preferred to "alright". Also, for me, rhyme is clearer with the former, because "right" is separated. Clearer to see (and arguably to hear).

(Another thought here: You might have the option of "awry" to rhyme with "nor I" -- with some fiddling you might be be able to use something like "nothing is awry" to mean "everything is OK".)

All excursions into former
I'd at once forbid.
And, my brother, do not stir me,
Let me rest a bit.


"former" is maybe a bit odd without an article. Personally, "I really liked "the backward" in the crib. Perhaps because it also has (in English) double meanings: it can mean stupid/unintelligent. And it also means the opposite of forwards, of progress. Revisiting the past is a backwards move, and we should move forward ... Anyway, I think you could go closer to the crib, with something like:

All excursions to the backward
I'd at once forbid.
Do not stir me, please, my brother,
Let me rest a bit.


"backward"/"brother" seems as a good a rhyme as former / stir me, and benefits from the alliteration.

Now, having suggested that change, I note that it would break up your quadruple rhyme: "former" / "stir me" / "deter me" / "stormy". Does the original have a quadruple rhyme? Looking at it (knowing next to nothing) it looks more like it has two pairs of different rhymes, if so, then you're not required to look for a quadruple rhyme here.

I'd hyphenate "feltboot", since conjoined it's not an English word. You mention to Carl that you're averse to hyphenating because that change would the stress. As a native English speaker of long standing, all I can say is that it wouldn't make any difference to how I stressed it.

"stormy", as it's not in the original, I wonder about it, though I think it works. Stormy because there was a war on. Maybe firestorms too (hence ashes). And/or winter (snow) storms.

In that winter, I've an inkling, (variant: In that year, I have an inkling,)
There, where – holy my! –
Will remain my mom unwrinkled
And my dad alive.*


I prefer what you have to the variant. For the winter/inkling assonance, and because "winter" is more specific than year, and winter, presumably, ties in with the felt boots. However, I think the grammar of the sentence is off:

"In that winter, [...] there, where will remain my mom unwrinkled and my dad alive"

It's not a sentence. It has no main clause that I can see. Looking at the crib that's also the case in the original. But still, combined with the awkwardness/inversion of "where will remain my mom", it doesn't sound good to me. And I can't really get it to make too much sense.

best,

Matt

Last edited by Matt Q; 09-29-2022 at 06:23 AM.
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  #5  
Unread 09-29-2022, 05:56 AM
Carl Copeland Carl Copeland is online now
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Matt, I’ll naturally let Alexander respond to your comments, but I want you to know you’re very welcome here. Peter says it used to be a thriving forum, but now it’s a lonely backwater, and yours is the only such detailed critique I’ve seen in the five months I’ve been here from anyone other than the four who are now active. People do stop in from time to time, but they’re often apologetic, as if they think they have to know the language in order to make a contribution. What I often want most of all is to know what my translation sounds like as English poetry. So whenever you find time to stop by, believe me, it will be appreciated.

Carl

Last edited by Carl Copeland; 09-29-2022 at 02:10 PM.
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  #6  
Unread 09-29-2022, 07:22 AM
Carl Copeland Carl Copeland is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Givental View Post
"Не мути мне душу" is a generic cliche similar to отстань, отвяжись, не приставай, иди к черту - "leave me alone". I meant "stir" in the meaning of "agitate" or "disturb" (будоражить), but somehow "don't disturb me" (why? because I am busy?) sounds wrong here.
Yes, “disturb” would mean, “Don’t disturb my rest.” “Stir” in the sense of “agitate” usually has positive connotations. “Stirring,” for example, is close to “воодушевляющий.” That’s why I understood it here as more physical: “Don’t force me to be active” or even “Don’t poke me while I’m resting.” But this is all fairly subtle, and I don’t mean to say that “stir” sounds bad. Сойдет.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Givental View Post
"valenki" should do, but "feltboot" (without the hyphen), more familiar or not, instills the right stress.
I agree with Matt about “feltboot.” Why don’t you like “on felt snow boots”? The stressed o is too long for one syllable? I don’t think that would ever occur to a native speaker, though you’re entitled to your preferences. No one will make any sense of “valenki” without a footnote.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Givental View Post
As about "unwrinkled" - you chose the most weird interpretation. According to Wiktionary https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/unwrinkled "unwrinkled" is an adjective meaning "wrinkle-free" or "wrinkleless" (e.g. "an unwrinkled face") with examples from literature - when used about face or forehead. But the expressions "wrinkled man" or "wrinkled woman" are easily found on the Internet.
All I’m saying is that if he saw his mother young again, he wouldn’t likely call her “unwrinkled” because that would spoil the picture. It’s like saying he saw his father without a bullet hole through his head. To me, “unwrinkled” also sounds somehow more impersonal than “without wrinkles,” for example, but that’s perhaps a subjective impression.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Givental View Post
You are right, it is not in the official list of interjections. (But now it should be added, I suppose.) I like its tone and sound - it seems right in the context, but I was hoping that native speakers can suggest something more colloquial.
Offhand, I can’t think of anything that would rhyme, unless you repeat “oh” and make it “oh! oh my!”

Last edited by Carl Copeland; 09-29-2022 at 01:59 PM.
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Unread 09-30-2022, 06:01 AM
Alexander Givental Alexander Givental is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Q View Post
Hi Alexander,
I think it's problematic to have "mecca" replace "ashes".
Hi Martin, thanks for joining in. It is a neat observation that "ashes" play some role in the original, though it seems paradoxical that the ashes "look alright". So, let me explain what is actually going on in the original.
First, at some points it sounds slangish, not finishing sentences or distorting grammar. E.g. it says "ashes look quite" (quite what?)
-- it's pointing to the cliche "quite normal". Speaking in this tone feels as some kind of bravado of a hurt person. "Ashes" here (пепелище = literally "ashes of a burned home") is said in the same tone -- a reference to the home where the childhood was spent, made coolly by quoting Pushkin's

Два чувства дивно близки нам —
В них обретает сердце пищу:
Любовь к родному пепелищу,
Любовь к отеческим гробам.

Two feelings are wonderfully close to us -
In them the heart finds food:
Love for native land
Love for father's coffins.

Note that Google translates "[родное] пепелище" simply as "[native] land". So, the literal meaning of "ashes" has no significance here (and the paradox is removed). Sorry if my crib was misleading here.

Quote:
Even if the ashes seem
Perfectly all right,
We won't find our sought-for dream
Neither you, nor I.
"Seem - dream" is a masculine rhyme, so can't work; but wouldn't you agree that "mecca - echo" is more interesting even than "пепелище - ищешь" ("native home - look for")?

Quote:
As Carl says, "all right" is preferred to "alright".
I am trying to use here something informal and irregular (like "quite" without "normal") but possibly not enough so.

Quote:
Also, for me, rhyme is clearer with the former, because "right" is separated. Clearer to see (and arguably to hear).
That I don't understand. A rhyme is something to hear, not to see. And here it is rime riche between "alright" and "nor I", not merely between "right" and "I".

Quote:
"nothing is awry" to mean "everything is OK".
This translates the meaning, but not the mood of the author.

Quote:
All excursions into former
I'd at once forbid.
And, my brother, do not stir me,
Let me rest a bit.


"former" is maybe a bit odd without an article.
You are right. In the original, it is another point where the grammar is intentionally broken: "путешествие в обратно" without "в" (=in) would mean "travel backward", but Shpalikov turns the adverb into a non-existing noun. So, I thought a little oddity is appropriate. (Carl killed the initial "to the former" by noting that "the former" has the parasitic meaning of an opposite to "the latter".)

Quote:
"backward"/"brother" seems as a good a rhyme as former / stir me, and benefits from the alliteration.
English has too many vowels to have good rhymes. So, in my scheme of things, "form" and "warm" rhyme with "worm" and hence with "firm", but don't rhyme with "farm". So, you might view "former - stir me" as a slant rhyme, but to my ear it is an almost perfect one. But I can't imagine in what universe "backward" rhymes with "brother".

Quote:
Now, having suggested that change, I note that it would break up your quadruple rhyme: "former" / "stir me" / "deter me" / "stormy".
The original doesn't have it, and in my initial version (not shown to Spherians) I was rather annoyed by my having the quadruple rhyme "dive - five - my - alive". The one you noticed occurred accidentally in the process of editing, but the two together perhaps create an interesting interplay worth keeping.

Quote:
As a native English speaker of long standing, all I can say is that it wouldn't make any difference to how I stressed it.
Apparently Google is younger than you, because it clearly stresses "feltboot" on the first syllable, while "felt-boot" and "felt boot" on the second. BTW, "I will ride on felt-boots" in the original is also paradoxical
(how can one ride on them?) Perhaps the author keeps since the war time a pair of valenki (maybe his father's), and a thought or a view of them would trigger the "trip to the backward". So, the word is supposed to be strange, pointing at something not normally used today. (And it probably should be "the felt-boots", not "a felt-boot", but there are no articles in Russian, and so there is no way to know.)

Quote:
"stormy", as it's not in the original, I wonder about it, though I think it works. Stormy because there was a war on. Maybe firestorms too (hence ashes). And/or winter (snow) storms.
I am actually not quite happy with it (I also thought of "thorny"), because
both say something banal about 1945.

Quote:
In that winter, I've an inkling, (variant: In that year, I have an inkling,)
There, where – holy my! –
Will remain my mom unwrinkled
And my dad alive.*


I prefer what you have to the variant. For the winter/inkling assonance, and because "winter" is more specific than year, and winter, presumably, ties in with the felt boots.
I prefer it too, for exactly the same reasons. As far as I remember, Shpalikov's father was trying to get to the front lines during the whole war, and was finally drafted, as an engineer, in January 1945, but in February was already reported "missing in action". So, "winter" is much more specific and accurate indeed.

Quote:
However, I think the grammar of the sentence is off:

"In that winter, [...] there, where will remain my mom unwrinkled and my dad alive"

It's not a sentence. It has no main clause that I can see. Looking at the crib that's also the case in the original. But still, combined with the awkwardness/inversion of "where will remain my mom", it doesn't sound good to me. And I can't really get it to make too much sense.
You are right, the complete sentence here is "In that winter will my mom remain unwrinkled and my dad alive." (I could say: "I will find my mom unwrinkled" but Carl will make fun of the process of unwrinkling the mom.) So, "there, where" don't belong anywhere - and the same is in the original. My understanding of it: the author has traveled this route many times and he knows what, whom, and how he finds there, but he is afraid of this painful encounter, and he delays it for as long as possible - "in the year forty-five I'll guess, there, where ... "

And (IMHO) the way whole poem works is based not on specific choice of words and their meaning, but on the subtleties of the mood conveyed by all such details - and by the general slow, melancholic rhythm of it.

Consequently:

Quote:
Carl: Why don’t you like “on felt snow boots”? The stressed o is too long for one syllable?
Because it destroys this melancholic rhythm (actually it is a "double spondee"). Note that though formally the poem is in trochee, most of the longer lines don't have a stress on the 1st syllable, and can be read with two stresses (or in two rhythmical "waves") each.

Last edited by Alexander Givental; 09-30-2022 at 06:11 AM.
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Unread 09-30-2022, 06:40 AM
Carl Copeland Carl Copeland is online now
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Originally Posted by Alexander Givental View Post
Apparently Google is younger than you, because it clearly stresses "feltboot" on the first syllable, while "felt-boot" and "felt boot" on the second.
Alexander, what are you doing to get the stress of “feltboot”? My guess is that Google is smart enough to know that, if there were such a word, it would be stressed on the first syllable. The problem is that such an unknown word will be read as two no matter how you write it, as Matt says, and you’ll get exactly the spondee you’re trying to avoid. (“On a feltboot” is a double iamb if read naturally.) “Snow boots,” on the other hand, is familiar enough to be a trochee. Which of those rhythms is more melancholy I wouldn’t know, but the latter at least stops readers from wondering why he has only one boot. (In English poetry, in fact, spondees are considered slower, heavier and more melancholy.)

Last edited by Carl Copeland; 09-30-2022 at 09:31 AM.
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Unread 09-30-2022, 09:17 AM
Matt Q Matt Q is offline
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Hi Alexander,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Givental View Post
Hi Martin
I'm Matt

Quote:
"Ashes" here (пепелище = literally "ashes of a burned home") ... So, the literal meaning of "ashes" has no significance here.
I'm not sure if I entirely follow. It does sound like the poet has chose this phrase because "ashes of a burned home" is relevant to about an (imagined) return to one's home before the war, in which context the literal meaning of "ashes" and "burned home" and the concomitant irreversible destruction seem relevant. Not to mention that much burned down in that war.

Quote:
but wouldn't you agree that "mecca - echo" is more interesting even than "пепелище - ищешь" ("native home - look for")?
I'm not that fond of "mecca" to be honest. Like Carl, I think "mecca" has geographical/cultural associations that are at odds with the rest of the poem. Also, Mecca is reachable. It's a place you can actually visit. A home that has burned to ashes isn't. Echo is nice in that it has sense of a memory, not the original, but something left behind. On the other hand, who's to say that the "echo" is being sought rather than the original?

Quote:
English has too many vowels to have good rhymes. So, in my scheme of things, "form" and "warm" rhyme with "worm" and hence with "firm", but don't rhyme with "farm". So, you might view "former - stir me" as a slant rhyme, but to my ear it is an almost perfect one. But I can't imagine in what universe "backward" rhymes with "brother".
"former" and "stir me" is not assonant in standard British English. Neither "for" and "stir" nor "mer" and "me" have the same vowel sound, so they're neither perfect nor assonant rhymes. So, it's a consonant rhyme only (for us standard Brits anyway). Likewise "backwards/brother" is a consonant rhyme. That's why I was it's a good a rhyme. They are both consonant rhymes. At least, in the universe I inhabit.

Quote:
Apparently Google is younger than you, because it clearly stresses "feltboot" on the first syllable, while "felt-boot" and "felt boot" on the second.
Google isn't a native English speaker, though, and probably isn't your target audience. But go with whichever authority you prefer. All I can say is that I'd pronounce "feltboot" no differently from "felt-boot". I wouldn't place a heavier stress on the second syllable in either case. I guess Google and I are running different algorithms.

Quote:
BTW, "I will ride on felt-boots" in the original is also paradoxical (how can one ride on them?) Perhaps the author keeps since the war time a pair of valenki (maybe his father's), and a thought or a view of them would trigger the "trip to the backward". So, the word is supposed to be strange, pointing at something not normally used today. (And it probably should be "the felt-boots", not "a felt-boot", but there are no articles in Russian, and so there is no way to know.)
"ride" might be better than "dive". Dive has connotations of going downward. (And "to take a dive" is, colloquially, to pretend to have been fouled). Actually, "glide" is another option and might be better still -- more magical. And if you did ride a boot through snow -- as if the boot were a sledge -- you'd be gliding over it.

Quote:
You are right, the complete sentence here is "In that winter will my mom remain unwrinkled and my dad alive." (I could say: "I will find my mom unwrinkled" but Carl will make fun of the process of unwrinkling the mom.) So, "there, where" don't belong anywhere - and the same is in the original. My understanding of it: the author has traveled this route many times and he knows what, whom, and how he finds there, but he is afraid of this painful encounter, and he delays it for as long as possible - "in the year forty-five I'll guess, there, where ... "
Forgive me for I have google-translated.

The result, though, gave me something I can understood better than your crib or poem:

In the forty-fifth I guess
Where, my God,
There will be a young mother
And my father is alive.

The use of "where" and "there" now make sense to me. But it is Google Translate, so who knows if it's right. Is the gist of it accurate?

best,

Matt

Last edited by Matt Q; 09-30-2022 at 09:28 AM.
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Unread 09-30-2022, 12:41 PM
Alexander Givental Alexander Givental is offline
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All I’m saying is that if he saw his mother young again, he wouldn’t likely call her “unwrinkled” because that would spoil the picture. It’s like saying he saw his father without a bullet hole through his head. To me, “unwrinkled” also sounds somehow more impersonal than “without wrinkles,” for example, but that’s perhaps a subjective impression.
Perhaps "without wrinkles" can be more personal, because it can refer to those familiar wrinkles on a familiar face. But going back in time and finding that familiar aged (=wrinkled) face becoming young(=unwrinkled) -- I don't understand how the image is spoiled by referring to a concrete visible feature that makes it look young.
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