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#germanophoneculture
Today is the 145th #birthday of great #Austrian poet Hugo von Hofmannsthal (1874-1929). He wrote both brilliant poetry and prose. He was a #monarchist and staunch supporter of the legendary Austro-Hungarian Empire; the outcome of #WWI was a blow to him.
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..The poem of Hofmannsthal's reproduced below is one of his both earliest and most famous. It was first published in Dec. 1892 in Vol. 2 of #StefanGeorge's journal when Hofmannsthal was 18 years old, under a #pseudonym(which allowed him to hide his tender age).
I'll translate..
.. the poem (in #prose, without any attempt at recreating #rhyme or #rhythm).
There is a lyrical #adaptation of the poem, published while von Hofmannsthal still alive, in
Charles Wharton Stork: 𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘓𝘺𝘳𝘪𝘤𝘢𝘭 𝘗𝘰𝘦𝘮𝘴 𝘰𝘧 𝘏𝘶𝘨𝘰 𝘷𝘰𝘯 𝘏𝘰𝘧𝘮𝘢𝘯𝘯𝘴𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘭.
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..
Oxford University Press 1918.
page 23, entitled 'Early Spring'. As a result of its trying to recreate rhyme and rhythm, that adaptation is not an accurate translation of the poem. As Stork himself says in the 'Introduction' on page 18:
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"Imagery can always [..] be translated; verbal felicity must of course be largely lost, or at best but partly re-created, in a new medium of expression."

Stork (𝘪𝘣𝘪𝘥., p.11) makes the an interesting comparative remark:
"Hofmannsthal differs from #Rossetti [pictured]
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.. in that he gives more general pictures, producing effects more purely like those of #music; whereas the pre-Raphaelite revels in SHARPLY DRAWN DETAIL [example painting by Dante #Rossetti pictured below] [...] Hofmannsthal's emotion is always subdued and even in texture.
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Now my translation.

"Vorfrühling"
My tr.: 'Pre-spring'

"Es läuft der Frühlingswind"
My tr.: 'The spring-wind is running'

"Durch kahle Alleen,"
My tr.: 'Trough bare avenues'

"Seltsame Dinge sind"
My tr.: 'Strange things are'

"In seinem Wehn."
My tr. 'Within its blowing'
..
..

"Er hat sich gewiegt,"
My tr.: 'It has dandled itself'

"Wo Weinen war,"
My tr.: 'Where there was crying,'

"Und hat sich geschmiegt"
My tr.: 'And it has nestled'

"In zerrüttetes Haar."
My tr.: 'In disheveled hair'

..
..
"Er schüttelte nieder"
My tr.: 'He shook down'

"Akazienblüten"
My tr.: 'acacia blossoms'

"Und kühlte die Glieder,"
My tr.: 'And cooled the limbs'

"Die atmend glühten."
My tr.: 'Which breathingly glowed'
..
..
"Lippen im Lachen"
My tr.: 'Lips while laughing'

"Hat er berührt,"
My tr.: 'It has touched'

"Die weichen und wachen"
My tr.: 'The soft and awake

"Fluren durchspürt."
My tr.: 'Leas he has sifted through'
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..
"Er glitt durch die Flöte"
My tr.: 'He slid through the flute'

"Als schluchzender Schrei,"
My tr.: 'As a sobbing scream'

"An dämmernder Röte"
My tr. 'Past the red dusk'

"Flog er vorbei."
My tr. 'Did it fly'
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..
"Er flog mit Schweigen"
My tr. 'Silent it flew'

"Durch flüsternde Zimmer"
My tr. 'Through whispering chambers'

"Und löschte im Neigen"
My tr. 'And it extinguished while declining'

"Der Ampel Schimmer."
My tr. 'The gleam of the lamp'["Ampel" in the old days meant 'lamp']
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..
"Es läuft der Frühlingswind"
My tr.: 'The spring-wind is running'

"Durch kahle Alleen,"
My tr.: 'Trough bare avenues'

"Seltsame Dinge sind"
My tr.: 'Strange things are'

"In seinem Wehn."
My tr. 'Within its blowing'
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..
"Durch die glatten"
My tr.: 'Through the smooth'

"Kahlen Alleen"
My tr.: 'Bare avenues'

"Treibt sein Wehn"
My tr.: 'Its blowing is driving'

"Blasse Schatten."
My tr.: 'Pale shadows'
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"Und den Duft,"
My tr.: 'And the scent'

"Den er gebracht,"
My tr.: 'Which it has brought'

"Von wo er gekommen"
My tr.: 'From where it came'

"Seit gestern nacht."
My tr.: 'Since yesterday night.'
@threadreaderapp : please UNROLL
(Correction: In the above, "He" should be 'It'. Sorry.)
Remark: With 'wache Fluren', i.e. 'awake leas', Hofmannsthal probably is alluding to the fact that in springtime, rural areas tend to come alive again,e.g. because some #hibernating animals get up from their slumber,or because migratory #birds return from their wintering grounds.
(Correction: in the above, "Silent" should have been 'Silently'. Sorry.)
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