While Trespassing I Note the Sadness of Old Fences- Robert Okaji 擅自越牆我感到坍塌腐欄的悲傷

With the poet’s permission I have translated the poem into Chinese:

While Trespassing I Note the Sadness of Old Fences by Robert Okaji


I write poems when I can, 我作詩盡可能

in late morning or during  在中午左右

the afternoon, between chores 工作之餘

but before dinner. And sometimes 晚飯之前。有時

I duck through spaces  我會閃出

void of wire barbs, and consider 鐵絲的倒刺間

how to fill the incomplete, which words, 考慮怎樣填字

what materials could repair 用那內容彌補

those particular holes. I cut my own 某短缺。一次,

fence once, to access our house 我需破欄回家

when the creek flooded the road, 小溪泛濫淹沒了路

lugging uphill through the snake 我拖上山坡穿過蛇草

grass a jug of scotch, my mandolin 一壺烈酒,我的曼陀林

and a watermelon, essentials for a weekend’s 一個西瓜,假日必需品

respite. To be truthful I cut only the lowest 說實話我只弄破最低的

strand, to help the dog get through — I 一條,讓狗穿過

was able to climb over, but he couldn’t dig 我可以攀過,但他不能挖穿

through the limestone rubble 那岩石瓦礫

to wriggle under, and we’d come too far 而扭過,而我們已錯過機會

to simply turn around. 回頭已晚

Translated by Mary Tang 鄧許文蘭 2016

About Mary Tang

An urban orchardist everyday, a volunteer regularly, a poet sometimes and a blogger since March 2015. I travel when I can. Food is a constant.
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7 Responses to While Trespassing I Note the Sadness of Old Fences- Robert Okaji 擅自越牆我感到坍塌腐欄的悲傷

  1. angela1313 says:

    Thank you Mary. I enjoy Robert’s poems but it expands 100 fold when I get to improve my Chinese by deconstructing your translation as I read them. It is frigid outside today and a plumber is on the way for the frozen pipes, backed up toilet and broken bathtub tap. Now I have something to keep me from going crazy while I wait.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. wfdec says:

    What a beautiful poem. I am sure you rendered it well.

    Liked by 1 person

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