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‘Maimed by a Wound’
Adapting the Dancing Shadows of Translation for the Aenied
I have preceded with the stated goal of using Patric Dickenson’s translation for titles, as his diction is much more heroic in English and John Dryden’s more authentically arranged translation, which has, in practice, caused me to balk—for it does not work. I am henceforth going to adapt a third shadow strand to this process.
-Dickenson’s diction will be retained for titling segments.
-Dryden’s couplet structure will be adapted.
-Diction for the body of the work will be done in the style of Robert E. Howard, who composed much verse in couplet stanzas like Dryden’s translation and employed much more gritty diction. So, to pull this off, I will try and imagine the late great young pulp flame, who wrote his own epitaph just before he shot himself in the head, compromising in his uncompromising style, between the two translations I am working from, with a view on his primary concerns: the migratory lives of the ancient, prehistoric warbands known to us as the Indo-European and Aryan, embodied in the struggle of barbarism versus civilization, and the soul of warrior peoples whose heroes were not merely champions against rival tribes, but champions against the very cruel gods which in actuality stalked the River of Time, gurgling with the suffering of the age-muted voices who transported us beyond their ken into this erasing field of Time that abides no sense of kin.
A final aspect of this adaptation of Virgil’s masterpiece, will be an abridgement, delivered in the spirit of a condensed for video script, whereby the screen writer attempts to convey the feeling of the much longer literary work in the more hurried medium of a movie. In epic terms, it would be as if the great poet died without his understudy memorizing every line, but rather a synopsis of each scene.
My apologies to Virgil and to Dante as well. But I could think of no better epitaph for a dying herd of denatured and fatefully pale races.
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