This is really the last and conclusive posting in my series on translating the short story “Eine kaiserliche Botschaft” by Franz Kafka into Ayeri that I started on February 15. Below you can find the whole text again with the sentence numbers serving as links to the individual installments. You can download the whole thing as a PDF as well.
Also, you can still tell me how you liked this series, in case I decide to do something like this again. Now that it’s over it might make even more sense to ask. So far, one (1) person has participated. Thanks for your vote, man!
The full text
Budang lanyana iray
1 Yam turakaya lanyāng iray – da-ningrey – va, si kebay, avanaya dipakan, karano, si iyin marinya perinena desay iray nay si danguvāng mangasaha timangya kahu-vā: yam māy turakaya va pakas lanyāng iray budangas mangasara pinamya pang-vā yana. 2 Sā sarayya ya ninayāng pinamya nay ang naraya taran budangas tangya ninayana. Budangang kapo-ing padangyam sitang-yana, sā na-narayāng yos tangya yana bayhi. 3 Ri kaytisyāng halinganley narānjas ninayana naban devona yana. 4 Nay marin yenuya silvayana ikan tenyanena yana – manga adruran merengyeley-hen bidis nay ang manga bengyan nyānye tiga similena hicanya ling rivanya ehen, siya lingreng iray nay apan – sā tavya mayisa ya ninayāng marin enyaya-hen. 5 Ang saraya edauyikan ninaya sasanyam: ayonang mico nay pisu tadoy – ri tiya itingley manga luga ikananya pinkasān tinuna patameng yana menanyam, tinuna nuveng yana palunganyam – 6 ang bidisaya arilinya itingley, ang mapaya ninaya hevenya yana sijya telbānley perin – saylingyāng kovaro naynay, ku-ranyāng palung. 7 Nārya ikananang kāryo-ing – ang tahoyyon midayanye tan litoley. 8 Ya sahongyāng simil apan, āh, ang nunaya ku-vipin nay ang pətangongva ankyu haruyamanas nanang megayena yana kunangya vana. 9 Da-yamva nārya, da-penyāng riayo – ya manga pastayāng tarela sangalye mitanena kong-vā – ang sēyraya tadoy adanyās – 10 nay viturongyāng, le gamarongyāng ranya – ang rua kotongya apanjam rivanley ehen – 11 nay viturongyāng, le gamarongyāng ranya – sa rua lugongyāng mandayye – nay pang mandayēa, samanas mitanyena si midaytong – nay ehenyeley nay mandayjas sayling – nay mitanas menikaneng – nay edāre manga luga pericanyēa samang – 12 nay ang pragongya panca manga agonan kunangyēa pang-vā ikan – nārya amangoyreng tadoy – ang yomongyo tarela ayromitan marin yāy, Terpeng Mavayena, sang nujyos deng idaseri avan sitang-yona. 13 Ang ming lugaya ranya – ang da-miraya nilarya-vā kayvo budangya nyānena tenya. — 14 Ang nedrasava nārya silvenoya vana nay ri sitang-tivāng budangas mangan tadayya si apanjo perinang.
“Pretty scripty” and recording
So what was gained from this experiment? For one, I’ve so far only ever translated texts into Ayeri without actually documenting choices and problems I’ve come across. Only the result counted. That way, however, especially questions about syntax, style, and pragmatic aspects of the language were left mostly undocumented. Forcing myself to document exactly those aspects of translating, left you, as the reader, as well as myself with an idea of what was going on in my head at the time of editing. And I think this is a good thing, even though translating this not too long text took ten times longer that usual. And fourteen times longer to publish, which was torture for impatient little me. I am still to finish writing the Grammar and don’t get anything done, sadly, but I hope that the thoughts and ideas written down in the individual parts of these series will add to the undertaking.
Speaking of stagnating grammar writing, the problem for me is that whenever I’m halfway through, I’ve usually changed enough that the whole thing needs to be reworked from the beginning, because examples need to be changed, or passages need to be rewritten to reflect the new decisions.
- “光绪皇帝大婚图.” [“Picture of the Wedding of Emperor Guangxu.”] Wikimedia Commons. Wikimedia Foundation, 17 May 2011. Web. 23 Feb. 2012. ‹http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:《光绪皇帝大婚图》之二.jpg› (Published in the Public Domain; cropped and label added)
- To do the concept of creative-commons licensing justice better, I have just uploaded the raw, spoken parts of the recording to my Soundcloud account as well. You can download them there.