email at 47west63rd@gmail.com

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Joaquin Sabina's 19 dias y 500 Noches (19 days and 500 nights)

and this is my humble translation of Joaquin Sabina's "19 Dias y 500 Noches" ("19 days and 500 nights") the title track from the wonderful 1999 album of the same name:



19 Days and 500 Nights

Our thing lasted as long as two “fish” (“ice cubes”) in a whisky on the rocks
Instead of pretending or striking me with a glass of jealousy, she laughed
I quickly saw myself, as nobody’s dog, barking at heaven’s door
She left me a toilet kit full of insults, honey on the lips and frost in the hair
My lovers were right in that before the bad one was me with one exception:
This time I wanted to want to love her and she didn’t.

So she left, and left me her heart in my bones and me on my knees
From the taxi, and committing an excess, she threw me two kisses.. one per cheek..
And I returned to the damnation of the drawer without her clothes and the perdition of the bars of drinks, cinderellas of payment and street corners, the sophisticated Laina, paying the bills of people without souls who lose their cool with cocaine, driving myself crazy, wasting “la bolsa” and life, and slowly I began to give up on her.. and even though in order not to depress her with flowers, not to pester her with my stories of cold sheets and empty bedrooms, in order not to buy her with jewelry, or be a puppet who goes on a pilgrimage with the brotherhood of Saint Reproach, so much I loved her, that I took 19 days and 500 nights to learn how to forget her.

She said hello and goodbye and the slamming door sounded like a question mark..I suspect that this way, through forgetting, Cupid avenged himself on me.
I don’t ask for forgiveness..for what? She’ll forgive me becase she does not care. She always had her forehead very tall, her tongue very long and her skirt very short..
She abandonded me like one abandons old shoes, destroyed my eyeglasses, removed from the mirror her living portrait, and I was so bold on the alleyways of gambling and wine that yesterday the porter kicked me out of the casino at Torrelodones.

What a great pity..i would deny the Saintly Sacrament at the very moment she sent it to me and even though in order not to depress Maria with flowers, not to pester her with my stories of cold sheets and empty bedrooms, in order not to buy her with jewelry, or be a puppet who goes on a pilgrimage with the brotherhood of Saint Reproach, so much I loved her, that I took 19 days and 500 nights to learn how to forget her…

and I returned..


----------------------------------------------------
the original spanish lyrics of

19 Dias y 500 Noches

Lo nuestro duró
lo que duran dos peces de hielo
en un güisqui on the rocks,
en vez de fingir,
o, estrellarme una copa de celos,
le dio por reír.
De pronto me vi,
como un perro de nadie,
ladrando, a las puertas del cielo.
Me dejó un neceser con agravios,
la miel en los labios
y escarcha en el pelo.
Tenían razón
mis amantes
en eso de que, antes,
el malo era yo,
con una excepción:
esta vez,
yo quería quererla querer
y ella no.
Así que se fue,
me dejó el corazón
en los huesos
y yo de rodillas.
Desde el taxi,
y, haciendo un exceso,
me tiró dos besos...
uno por mejilla.
Y regresé
a la maldición
del cajón sin su ropa,
a la perdición
de los bares de copas,
a las cenicientas
de saldo y esquina,
y, por esas ventas
del fino Laina,
pagando las cuentas
de gente sin alma
que pierde la calma
con la cocaína,
volviéndome loco,
derrochando
la bolsa y la vida
la fui, poco a poco,
dando por perdida.
Y eso que yo,
paro no agobiar con
flores a María,
para no asediarla
con mi antología
de sábanas frías
y alcobas vacías,
para no comprarla
con bisutería,
ni ser el fantoche
que va, en romería,
con la cofradía
del Santo Reproche,
tanto la quería,
que, tardé, en aprender
a olvidarla, diecinueve días
y quinientas noches.
Dijo hola y adiós,
y, el portazo, sonó
como un signo de interrogación,
sospecho que, así,
se vengaba, a través del olvido,
Cupido de mi.
No pido perdón,
¿para qué? si me va a perdonar
porque ya no le importa...
siempre tuvo la frente muy alta,
la lengua muy larga
y la falda muy corta.
Me abandonó,
como se abandonan
los zapatos viejos,
destrozó el cristal
de mis gafas de lejos,
sacó del espejo
su vivo retrato,
y, fui, tan torero,
por los callejones
del juego y el vino,
que, ayer, el portero,
me echó del casino
de Torrelodones.
Qué pena tan grande,
negaría el Santo Sacramento,
en el mismo momento
que ella me lo mande.
Y eso que yo,
paro no agobiar con
flores a María,
para no asediarla
con mi antología
de sábanas frías
y alcobas vacías,
para no comprarla
con bisutería,
ni ser el fantoche
que va, en romería,
con la cofradía
del Santo Reproche,
tanto la quería,
que, tardé, en aprender
a olvidarla, diecinueve días
y quinientas noches.
Y regresé...etc

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

great translation!! Always interesting to hear another interpretation of those beautiful, beautiful lyrics :)

Blog Archive