Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Translation Idol

no man’s land literary translation lab presents:

Translation Idol – no man’s land sucht den Superübersetzer*

Marking the first anniversary of our monthly literary translation lab, no man’s land invites all those budding, successful and prizewinning German-English translators out there to join in our first ever translation talent contest.

The text to translate is Ron Winkler’s poem “und später dann Paraboläpfel am Atem” (see below). Translate it any which way you like – fast and loose, slow and steady, straight from the hip, make it rhyme, give it a dialect, put it into iambic pentameter, recreate it as a limerick – whatever you want to do. You don’t have to be a seasoned professional – a passion for words is all it takes. Please send your translation for the contest (in Word or rtf format) by 4 May to: katy (squiggle) interalia.de. Don’t forget your name and telephone number.

Ideally, you should be able to attend the contest itself, at 8 pm on 6 May in the library (upstairs) at Max & Moritz, Oranienstraße 162, 10969 Berlin 36 (Kreuzberg). Just turn up with your translation, ready to read. The audience will vote on the winning version, and the poet will choose his own personal favourite. There’ll be prizes galore for the top Translation Idols. If you can’t attend, your text will be read on your behalf. It’s still well worth entering, as all entries will be published on the no man’s land website. Please let us know whether you’ll be coming to the contest when you send your submission.

So get your dictionaries out and get translating! Or just come along to participate in the audience vote and enjoy an entertaining evening of poetry and translation.

*oder die Superübersetzerin.

The poem:

›und später dann Paraboläpfel am Atem‹

unten der Garten. der spezialisierte
Wald. oben das endlose π der Sonne.

und Schönheit als eher Unscheinbarkeit.
also Wolken. insofern Wolken.

dazwischen das infernalische Obst. das
infernalische Obst.

waren dort nicht auch Grizzlyhasen?
nicht auch dort? am Zaun?

und dschungelartige Würfel
wie zu Boden geschrieene Vögel?

jemand drückte in diese sehr, sehr
verreiste Stimmung hinein die Räuspertaste

seiner Heckler & Koch. das war nicht ich,
das gehörte einer anderen Intensitätsgruppe


Ron Winkler

The no man’s land literary translation lab is a monthly meeting for anyone interested in German-English literary translation. Just turn up at Max & Moritz with a text you want to go through with the group, or come along to provide advice and moral support. The lab meets at 8 pm every first Tuesday of the month, upstairs in the Max & Moritz library.

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