Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Translation of a Poem by Erik Gustaf Geijer

Erik Gustaf Geijer (1783-1847) was a Swedish writer, historian, and professor. He grew up in Varmland and attended Uppsala University. Here is a link to more information about him:

Geijer

A while ago I took a shot at translating one of his lyric poems.

Salongen och Skogen

By Erik Gustaf Geijer

Stojande verld, du mig plågar!
Hvar fines stillhet? Dit vill jag vandra.
På allt havad hjertat frågar
Ej får du svar af dig sjelf, ej af andra.

Hellre I skogen jag vankar.
Aftonens flägt genom kronorna susar
Men mina stilla tankar
Hör jag ändå, fastän skogen brusar.



Polite Society Versus The Woods

(translated by Hans Ostrom)

Noisy world, you plague me!
Where is there stillness? I’ll go there.
An old heart must not ask
Hard questions of itself or of another.

I’d much rather wander in woods
Than watch days get devoured by official fervor.
My languorous thoughts long
For a forest, listen for its steady murmur.


(translation Copyright 2009 Hans Ostrom)
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