Make Italy Yours

A blog of Italian Culture and Nature

Tag: Italian poem

Primo Levi: If This Is a Man-Shemà

 

Voice: Dino Becagli, Music: John Williams

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Poetry in Holocaust Education Part 2/4: “Shema” by Primo Levi

If This Is a Man (Italian-English)

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Wikipedia (Italian): Map of the route taken by Primo Levi from Auschwitz to Turin

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Nearly midnight

by Stefania Bufano

 

Quasi mezzanotte

 

Il giorno dopo è ora

e domani sempre

nei respiri unici che vorrei cogliere

e non posso

come le rotondità

di musiche ininterrotte

e l’addio che non potei darti.

 

Il giorno dopo è già qui,

non ho fatto nulla

che potrà renderti immortale

perché è già di nuovo quasi mezzanotte

e io, tra i suoi bagliori incerti

in uno stesso lampo

ho visto me invecchiare,

in un lampo tutto avere e perdersi in quelle luci.

 

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Nearly midnight

 

The day after is now

and tomorrow always

in the unique breaths that I would like to take

and I can not,

like the roundnesses of unbroken musics

and the good bye I couldn’t give to you.

 

The day after is here already,

and nothing I have done

to make you immortal

’cause it’s again nearly midnight

and among its trembling beams,

in the same flash

I have seen myself grown old,

to get everything in a flash, and to get lost in those lights.

 

 

(Caterham, May 28, 1996 – Translated by M. Del Bigo)

DSCN2599 (800x518) (640x414) - Copia (2)

Manuscript. Quasi mezzanotte, 1996

A poem by Roberto Carifi

by Stefania Bufano

A short poem. I know that poetry is the hardest to translate and understand in another language, but this one, that I have found a few months ago on YouTube, I loved very much.

There’s an actor, Domenico Pelini, who reads very clear and well, so I think you can hear a very good pronunciation and love the Italian language here.

The name of this important poet is Roberto Carifi; he isn’t very popular among  the Italians, but popular to Italians that usually read a lot of poetry. He was born in 1948 in Pistoia, a little and beautiful town near Florence. Carifi is particularly interested in philosophy and psychoanalysis.

This poem is a little sad… It talks about a love story which ended, perhaps too soon, in November…

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Lo sai, amore, che mi congedo in fretta,
che tocco terra con troppa leggerezza,
che ho un destino nelle tasche vuote
e un angelo spoglio che di sera
mi piange livido sul petto.
E passo sotto le mura di novembre
con un messaggio da portare
non so né a chi né dove,
scritto a singhiozzi come una preghiera,
e vo quasi fratello nella notte
guardando ombre sorvegliate,
certi lumini accesi
e l’occhio spento di anime perdute.

 

(note: “vo” means “vado”, I go)

 

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Roberto Carifi

 

Domenico Pelini YouTube

 

Pistoia

 

 

 

 

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