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Divine Comedy translation, Hell Canto XI

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I am trying to translate the greatest poem of human history by Dante from italian to english maintaining a rhyme style similar to the original poem

On the extremity of a tall bank Of big broken stones in round circle done We reached up a more cruel clutter flank; And there, for the horrible and strong stun Of rotten stench which the deep abyss throws, We then approached, from back, a stone lid dun Of a large grave, where written words arose Telling: “Pope Anastasio I see, Who to Fotin the wrong way could impose”. “Our getting down suitably slow should be, So that we use not sense at first too much Toward bad souls, and then at high degree”. So my master; and I “No fee as such”, Told him, “Finds the one who obtains that time Is not lost”. And he: “My thought you touch”. “My dear son, inside this stony grime”, He started to tell, “Three small circles are Grade after grade, as the one you just climb. All are full of souls accursed by far; And even if their view enough be might, You may know why they have such a bar. Of all evils, which blame in God ignite, Hurt is the end, and any end is thus With force or fraud to else a stinging bite. But since fraud in man is wrong built in plus, Displeases God; and for this are more low Fraudulents, and have more sorrow and cuss. Violent people have all the first bow; But since three kinds of forces are in act, It is shared in three turns I shall show. To God, to oneself, to else is impact Produced, either to them or to their things, As you shall hear and feel quite well in fact. Death with wildness and painful stings To else are given, and to what he has too Ruins, fire and whatever losses brings; Thus killers and any who wildness grew, Robbers and raiders, harasses them all The circle first just for damned not a few. A man can in himself roughness install And in his goods too: but in the doors Of second circle he has then to bawl Whoever self deprives in world of yours, Bets and destroys his goods in full indeed, And cries just there where joy ought to have corps. One might too against God roughness mislead, Within heart denying and cursing him, Despising his nature and his good deed; For this reason marks in the lowest rim Both Sodoma and Caorsa with his sign And who, with heart against God exerts vim. Fraud, for which any conscience has to pine, Might man exert against whom gives him trust And when a loan return has to decline. This way of acting looks as breaking just Even the bond of love which nature did; So that in the second circle stay must Cant, flattery, and who uses cheat bid, Deceitfulness, theft, and simony too, Pimps, fences and similar degraded. Such way of acting then that love cuts through Done by nature, and the one which adds next, Which can a special form of faith accrue; Thus in the minor circle, at the plex Of universe where Dite happen to dwell, Whoever deceives is forever vexed”. And I: “Master, progresses clearly well Your reasoning, and it shows clear indeed This abyss and folks which here live and fell. But tell me: that people in the swamp decreed, Windswept, and hardly swept by rain, And with harsh words to ever fighting cede, Why aren’t they in the red town domain Punished, if are that much in wrath to God? And if doesn’t feel so, why in that bane? And he to me: “Why is your mind so flawed”, Told, ”your genius from usual is so far? Or your mind by something else might be awed? Don’t you now remember those words which are The ones your Ethics then well knows and wants The three provisions which heavens bar, Incontinence, malice and also taunts Of mad wildness? And how incontinence Less God offends of people who it flaunts? If you consider well again this sentence, And recall to your mind now who are those That just up there outside have penitence, You see well how for such sinners it goes A different way, and why worried less Divine revenge hits them but then less close”. “Oh sun which aids any sight under stress, You can fill so much my hope when you solve, That, more than knowing, I like doubts to guess. Yet back just a little you should revolve”, I told, “where is who with usury hits The divine goodness, and the knot resolve” “Philosophy”, he told me, “If brain fits, Notes, and not only in one of its parts, How nature always hers good pattern gets From divine mind and also from his arts; And if your Physics are perceiving well, You shall find, and not after many charts, That your art, when possible, to excel As scholar with master, follows that one So that your art can almost God propel. From these two, if your thought can also run To Genesis from beginning, is right To get own life and surpass the outdone; And since the usurer chose a way trite, Neither nature nor what it follows yet Prizing, to pose his hope in else he might. But follow me by now, I like sky set; Since Fishes flicker on horizon up And Dipper above Chorus is to get And at the flounce above is our down step”.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2014

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