Sunday, 18 February 2007

I'm back, and here's a meme

Sorry for the radio silence of the past two weeks. I've been doing plenty of reading, but most of it has been German literature, and none of it has put me in the mood for political polemic.

Anyway, let me ease myself gently back into the blogosphere with a meme sent my way by Leo Watkins (via Sam Tarran, via Jingoistic).

1) Grab the closest book to you.

Die Unendliche Geschichte (The Neverending Story) by Michael Ende - see what I mean about too much German literature?!

2) Open to page 123, go down to the 4th sentence.

Oh joy, it's in the middle of a poem.

3) Post the text of the following 3 sentences on your blog.

"Wer kann der Kindlichen Kaiserin
einen neuen Namen geben?
Nicht du, noch ich, nicht Elfe, noch Dschinn,
von uns rettet keiner ihr Leben
und keiner erlöst uns alle vom Fluch,
durch keinen wird sie gesunden.
Wir sind nur Figuren in einem Buch
und vollziehen, wozu wir erfunden."

I've only ever read it in the original German, and I don't own a copy of the standard English translation by Ralph Manheim. So I guess I have to translate it myself. Forgive me for not spending half a day making a version that rhymes!

"Who can give a new name
to the Childlike Empress?
Neither you, nor I, nor elf, nor djinn.
None of us can save her life,
And nobody shall redeem us from the curse,
Or help her to recover.
We are just characters in a book,
And can do nothing, save what we were written to do."

Thanks Leo! I now inflict the misery on James Branthwaite, Tom Hardman, Chris Pannell, Matt Wieteska, and the hot ginger one.

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