Translation of Brodsky’s Poem about Autumn and Stockings

November 25, 2012 under Poetry

I finally went to the library to check the book called Collected Poems in English by Joseph Brodsky to see if one of his poems about stockings has an approved translation to English.  He was a Russian poet who was expelled from the USSR in 1972, settled in the US and won the Nobel prize in 1987 and was named US Poet Laureate in 1991.

After consulting some academic sources, I’ve been told that all the poems that he wrote in English and translation of his work by other people that he approved of were compiled in this book in chronological order.  I checked, but the poem I was hoping to find wasn’t there.  In order for you to experience it, I asked Inna, my Ukrainian connection, to translate it.

 

 

 

 

ГђЕѕГђВЅГђ° ГђВЅГђ°Р“ђВґГђµР“ђВІГђ°Р“С’µР“‘‚ чуÐ»Р“ђВєГђВё, ГђВё ГђВЅГђ°Р“‘Ñ‚упÐ°Р“С’µР“‘‚ осÐµР“ђВЅГ‘Е’;

спÐ»Р“ђВѕГ‘Л†ГђВЅГђВѕГђВ№ ГђВєГђ°Р“ђВїГ‘€Ð¾Ð½Ð¾Ð²Ñ‹Ð¹ ГђВґГђВѕГђ¶Р“ђВґГ‘Е’ вокруг.

ГђЛњ чÐµР“ђВј Гђ±Р“ђВѕГђ»Р“‘Е’Г‘Л†Гђµ Гђ°Р“‘Ñ„Ð°Р“С’»Р“‘ŒÑ‚ ГђВІГђВЅГђµ сÐµР“С’±Р“‘ВЏ от оспин,

Ñ‚ÐµР“ђВј Г‘ЕЅГђ±Р“ђВєГђ° ГђВґГђ»Р“ђВёГђВЅГђВЅГђµР“С’Р’в„– ГђВё острÐµР“С’Р’в„– ГђВєГђ°Р“С’±Р“С’»Р“‘Ж’ГђВє.

Иосиф Бродский, 1993 г.

 

She starts wearing stockings, and autumn befalls;

Convergently, nylons are raining as screen.

The harder street pavement is dented with pocks,

the longer runs skirt and sharper the heel.

by Joseph Brodsky, 1993  (translated by Inna)

 

Inna’s Note:  3rd line could also be interpreted as follows: street pavement is raging/angry from/through pocks.  (ГђВІ Гђ·Р“С’°Р“ђВІГђВёГ‘Ð¸Ð¼Ð¾ÑÑ‚и от Гђ·Р“ђВЅГђ°Р“‘‡ÐµР“ђВЅГђВёГ‘ВЏ «Р“ђВІГђВЅГђµ сÐµР“С’±Р“‘ВЏ» – то Гђ»Р“С’Р’С‘ ГђВІГђВЅГђµ сÐµР“С’±Р“‘ВЏ от Гђ·Р“С’»Р“ђВѕГ‘Ñ‚и, то Гђ»Р“С’Р’С‘ ГђВІГђВЅГђµ сÐµР“С’±Р“‘ВЏ, Ñ‚.ГђВє. сÐ°Р“ђВј ГђВЅГђ° сÐµР“С’±Р“‘ВЏ ГђВЅГђµ похож.)

Is there anyone here who would like to put forward their own translation?  We’d love to hear your comments.

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