Friday, April 29, 2011

Catullus, Poem 36

Gaius Valerius Catullus
84-54 BCE (over 2,000 years ago)
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Golden Age/Republican Era)

 XXXVI. ad Lusi cacatam

ANNALES Volusi, cacata carta,
[The histories of Volusus, pieces of paper fit to shit on.]

uotum soluite pro mea puella.
[let loose a prayer for the sake of my girlfriend.]

nam sanctae Veneri Cupidinique
[You see, she now prays to sacred Venus, and Cupid,]

si sibi restitutus essem
[if only I had been restored to her]

desissemque truces uibrare iambos,
[and had stopped rattling your disgusting verses]

electissima pessimi poetae
scripta tardipedi deo daturam
infelicibus ustulanda lignis.
[while she is about to give the choicest lines of the very worst poet to the slow-footed god, set to be burned upon ominous logs of wood.]

et hoc pessima se puella uidit
iocose lepide uouere diuis.
[And my girlfriend now thinks herself to be the very worst for here devoting this, in her charming and funny demeanor, to the gods.]

nunc o caeruleo creata ponto,
[Now, you goddess, created by the dark blue sea,]

quae sanctum Idalium
[you who created holy Idalios,]

Vriosque apertos
[and the open-range Urios,]

quaeque Ancona
[and Ancona]

Cnidumque harundinosam
[and Cnidos with her hills full of swallow-birds]

quaeque Amathunta
[and Amathunta]

quaeque Golgos
[and Golgos]

quaeque Durrachium Hadriae tabernam,
[and Dyrrachium, the market center of the Adriatic,]

acceptum face redditumque uotum,
[receive and return my prayer,]

si non illepidum neque inuenustum est.
[if this is nothing that lacks charm, or enticement.]

at uos interea uenite in ignem,
[But you, in the meantime, run to the fire,]

pleni ruris et inficetiarum.
[since you are full of country spirit, and lack any sense of sophistication.]

annales Volusi, cacata carta.
[You are the histories of Volusius, pieces of paper fit to shit on.]