Vers Brussel - Poetry Translation Workshop with Ulf Stolterfoht

In juni ’08 streek het stadspoëzieproject Vers Brussel van Het beschrijf neer in de Brusselse Europawijk.

EN/ Earlier this year German poet Ulf Stolterfoht visited the European district by invitation of Vers Brussel, the urban poetry project of Het beschrijf. As a result he wrote the intriguing poem ‘babel’. Belgian artist Honoré d’O will now create a temporary work based on this poem. On Sunday 19 October 17 candidate-translators, mostly working for the European Institutions, attended a poetry translation workshop as preparation for their own version of the poem. In the comments on this entry you may follow how the poet and his translators exchange views on a number of translation issues. The poem itself is already available in German, Dutch and French on Vers Brussel's own website.

NL/ De Duitse dichter Ulf Stolterfoht bezocht de Brusselse Europawijk en schreef vanuit deze ervaring het gedicht 'babel'. Voor het tijdelijke beeldende werk van Belgisch kunstenaar Honoré d’O wordt het gedicht nu vertaald naar de 23 officiële Europese talen. Op de website van Vers Brussel leest u Stolterfohts gedicht in het Duits, het Nederlands en het Frans.
Vertalers en tolken van de Europese instellingen werken momenteel gezamenlijk aan hun versies van dit eigentijdse gedicht. In de onderstaande commentaren bij dit bericht kunt u volgen hoe dichter en vertalers hun praktische ervaringen uitwisselen.


Bruno Aertssen said...

Dear participants,

You can use this blog freely to exchange views and questions on the translation of the 'babel' poem. You will find more info on the author at www.engeler.de
In the links of www.lyrikline.org you can listen to a recording of an interview with Ulf.
Good luck to you all!

Erik de Smedt said...

Dear all,

For those who would like to read some other poems of Ulf, here is another link:


There you find 9 poems from 'Lingos' (= 'Fachsprachen') translated into English by Rosmarie Waldrop.

Kind regards and please don't hesitate to use this blog!

Katinka said...

Hello everybody!

? No comments or questions yet? How is your work going? I have a version ready, but I assume the coming workshops might give me some new ideas.

Questions to Ulf: for the sake of the rythm I translated "...bezuschusst." into "eu-bidrag" (eu-beitrag). Is it alright to explicitly write "eu"? I also added another element, "zum mitschrieb" I translated into "ber skrivaren" (bittet der Schreiber). I myself like this picture of a person parallelly writing the poem down, but maybe you find it to narrow?

Regards, Katinka (S)

erik de smedt said...

Hereby Ulf's answers to your questions, Katinka – see you on Sunday!

dear katinka,

(1) "eu-bidrag" is rather good, i think. use it!

(2) "ber skrivaren" is a bit problematic. "zum mitschrieb" is really aggressive and means originally:
you are so stupid, so i will tell it to you very slowly = "zum mitschrieb" - so slow that even a stupid
person as you are will understand.
its a different accent, but your translation works as well!

thank you and all the best,
yours, ulf

Katinka said...

Thank you dear Ulf!

I see, then I change
"så långsamt, ber skrivaren" into:
"långsamt då, för skrivaren" (langsam dann, für den schreiber) which has a little sarcastic tone but still uses "skrivaren".

Yours, Katinka