Translating a poet for the irst time is a daunting and humbling experience, and one that invokes a curious sensation of honour and responsibility. Poetry, more than any other form of language, possesses qualities that are impossible to render in a second language without some degree of transformation. The wisest path in translation is that which strays neither too far from the source nor too far from the target, but forges a coherent connection between the two.
This correspondence proved immensely valuable throughout the translation process, as it allowed me to clarify certain points and discuss the poetry with someone who knew and understood it more intimately than I ever could. I have adopted a generally foreignizing strategy in my translation of Los Planetas.
The former method, advocated by Schleiermacher himself, involves retaining a certain sense of foreignness in the translated text. The alien universe of Los Planetas is marked by a distinct poetic strangeness, which I have been at pains to preserve in my translation. There are certain concepts that simply cannot be rendered into English without some degree of explanation or distortion. Certain supplementary techniques, such as compensation, explicitation and generalization, are designed to facilitate the translation of such concepts cf.
Vinay and Darbelnet. For instance, the inevitable losses involved in translation can sometimes be redeemed at other points in the text. Unfortunately, though, compensation is not always possible, and culture-speciic concepts in the source text must occasionally be smuggled into translation under the blanket of a more general target-language term. Poetry translation requires a special degree of caution in this regard, however. The poet Yaxkin Melchy represents an exciting new generation of talented young poets in Mexico.
Today, the Red is a borderless, youth-friendly space for creation and self-publication, offering promising opportunities for translation into languages other than Spanish. As well as publishing his own poetry, Yaxkin also compiles, edits and shares anthologies of poetry and visual art. One of the most interesting aspects of the Red de los poetas salvajes is its predominantly online presence. For him, online publication is more than just a means of minimizing costs. The online publication format allows for the inclusion of large-scale visual artwork alongside the poetry, as well as active links to videos and other media.
Furthermore, as Yaxkin himself comments, the ephemeral nature of online literature adds a beautifully savage element to his writing. Needless to say, the indeterminate and multifarious nature of the Internet cannot be replicated on paper. As the title suggests, Los Planetas contains strong recurring themes of astronomy, space-iction and metaphysics. There are several references to theoretical physicists and philosophers, and scientiic or mathematical terminology is often woven into the fabric of the poetry.
As a translator, I have had to irst comprehend this language before attempting to communicate it in English. Yaxkin also dedicates many of his poems to friends and contemporaries, and his writing frequently verges on the metaliterary with its self-relective themes and explicit references to other poets and artists. Four Poems by Yaxkin Melchy 45 rereversed interspersed by spring deserted in the verse versed in what is irst born as a question mark that grows with the rain The replacement of one neologism with another was simple enough, as was preserving the relationship between verse and versed.
The real challenge lay in reproducing the rhythmic alliteration of the original. Initially, I preferred streaked with spring to interspersed by spring, and stranded in the verse to deserted in the verse. Nevertheless, I eventually opted to prioritize the sound of the whole stanza over my partiality for individual words. Reading the stanza aloud several times helped me to arrive at this decision. Many acclaimed poetry translators admit to employing similar methods in the translation and revision of their work. The fact that I was engaged in regular email correspondence with Yaxkin prompted me to seek his advice in such instances.
I settled on: 4 Yaxkin and other members of the Red de los poetas salvajes frequently perform their poetry aloud. Nevertheless, I do not feel disappointed with the text that I have produced, nor am I pessimistic about the outcomes of poetry translation in general. Like poetry itself, translation is a dificult and imperfect art form.
It requires creativity, ingenuity and yes, a certain degree of compromise. But so does all writing. Poetry translation is no doubt a challenging task, but it is by no means a futile or impossible one. The Mexico of Los Planetas is a kind of cybergenetic dystopia, ravaged by modernity and capitalist debauchery. Yaxkin articulates the disenchantment of a generation born and raised in that confusing social climate.
This said, his poetry is far from defeatist. The cosmos that Yaxkin has created is one in which poets rewrite entire constellations, where universes decompose and are rebuilt by human consciousness, where books are as big as houses — indeed, as big as planets — and time is distorted to the point of losing all meaning. To an extent, then, Los Planetas is a form of surrealist escapism, a hallucinatory journey into outer cyber space.
It is also much more than this, however. Poetry, Yaxkin explains, has become unnecessary in modern times, a peripheral art form disregarded by many as convoluted and bizarre. Dejad que el obsceno con fe y fervor venere. Nosotros con fuerza nos enfrentaremos, lo refutaremos. Hereupon Punch Costello dinged with his fist upon the board and would sing a bawdy catch Staboo Stabella about a wench that was put in pod of a jolly swashbuckler in Almany which he did now attack: The first three months she was not well, Staboo, when here nurse Quigley from the door angerly bid them hist ye should shame you nor was it not meet as she remembered them being her mind was to have all orderly against lord Andrew came for because she was jealous that not gasteful turmoil might shorten the honour of her guard.
It was an ancient and a sad matron of a sedate look and christian walking, in habit dun beseeming her megrims and wrinkled visage, nor did her hortative want of it effect for incontinently Punch Costello was of them all embraided and they reclaimed the churl with civil rudeness some and with menace of blandishments others whiles all chode with him, a murrain seize the dolt, what a devil he would be at, thou chuff, thou puny, thou got in the peasestraw, thou losel, thou chitterling, thou spawn of a rebel, thou dykedropt, thou abortion thou, to shut up his drunken drool out of that like a curse of God ape, the good sir Leopold that had for his cognisance the flower of quiet, margerain gentle, advising also the time's occasion as most sacred and most worthy to be most sacred.
In Horne's house rest should reign. En la casa de Home la calma debe reinar. To be short this passage was scarce by when Master Dixon of Mary in Eccles, goodly grinning, asked young Stephen what was the reason why he had not cided to take friar's vows and he answered him obedience in the womb, chastity in the tomb but involuntary poverty all his days.
Master Lenehan at this made return that he had heard of those nefarious deeds and how, as he heard hereof counted, he had besmirched the lily virtue of a confiding female which was corruption of minors and they all intershowed it too, waxing merry and toasting to his fathership.
But he said very entirely it was clean contrary to their suppose for he was the eternal son and ever virgin. Thereat mirth grew in them the more and they rehearsed to him his curious rite of wedlock for the disrobing and deflowering of spouses, as the priests use in Madagascar island, she to be in guise of white and saffron, her groom in white and grain, with burning of nard and tapers, on a bridebed while clerks sung kyries and the anthem Ut novetur sexus omnis corporis mysterium till she was there unmaided.
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He gave them then a much admirable hymen minim by those delicate poets Master John Fletcher and Master Francis Beaumont that is in their Maid's Tragedy that was writ for a like twining of lovers: To bed, to bed, was the burden of it to be played with accompanable concent upon the virginals. An exquisite dulcet epithalame of most mollificative suadency for juveniles amatory whom the odoriferous flambeaus of the paranymphs have escorted to the quadrupedal proscenium of connubial communion.
Well met they were, said Master Dixon, joyed, but, harkee, young sir, better were they named Beau Mount and Lecher for, by my truth, of such a mingling much might come. Young Stephen said indeed to his best remembrance they had but the one doxy between them and she of the stews to make shift with in delights amorous for life ran very high in those days and the custom of the country approved with it.
Greater love than this, he said, no man hath that a man lay down his wife for his friend. Go thou and do likewise. Thus, or words to that effect, said Zarathustra, sometime regius professor of French letters to the university of Oxtail nor breathed there ever that man to whom mankind was more beholden. Bring a stranger within thy tower it will go hard but thou wilt have the secondbest bed. Orate, fratres, pro memetipso. And all the people shall say, Amen. Remember, Erin, thy generations and thy days of old, how thou settedst little by me and by my word and broughtest in a stranger to my gates to commit fornication in my sight and to wax fat and kick like Jeshurum.
Therefore hast thou sinned against the light and hast made me, thy lord, to be the slave of servants. Return, return, Clan Milly: forget me not, O Milesian. Why hast thou done this abomination before me that thou didst spurn me for a merchant of jalaps and didst deny me to the Roman and the Indian of dark speech with whom thy daughters did lie luxuriously?
Look forth now, my people, upon the land of behest, even from Horeb and from Nebo and from Pisgah and from the Horns of Hatten unto a land flowing with milk and money. But thou hast suckled me with a bitter milk: my moon and my sun thou hast quenched for ever. And thou hast left me alone for ever in the dark ways of my bitterness: and with a kiss of ashes hast thou kissed my mouth. This tenebrosity of the interior, he proceeded to say, hath not been illumined by the wit of the septuagint nor so much as mentioned for the Orient from on high which brake hell's gates visited a darkness that was foraneous.
Assuefaction minorates atrocities as Tully saith of his darling Stoics and Hamlet his father showeth the prince no blister of combustion. The adiaphane in the noon of life is an Egypt's plague which in the nights of prenativity and postmortemity is their most proper ubi and quomodo. And as the ends and ultimates of all things accord in some mean and measure with their inceptions and originals, that same multiplicit concordance which leads forth growth from birth accomplishing by a retrogressive metamorphosis that minishing and ablation towards the final which is agreeable unto nature so is it with our subsolar being.
The aged sisters draw us into life: we wail, batten, sport, clip, clasp, sunder, dwindle, die: over us dead they bend. First saved from water of old Nile, among bulrushes, a bed of fasciated wattles: at last the cavity of a mountain, an occulted sepulchre amid the conclamation of the hillcat and the ossifrage. And as no man knows the ubicity of his tumulus nor to what processes we shall thereby be ushered nor whether to Tophet or to Edenville in the like way is all hidden when we would backward see from what region of remoteness the whatness of our whoness hath fetched his whenceness.
Haz como vieres. Orate, fratres pro memetipso. Las viejas hermanas nos traen a la vida: lloramos, nos cebamos, jugueteamos, nos peleamos, nos abrazamos, nos separamos, decaemos, morimos: cuando hemos muerto ellas se inclinan sobre nosotros. Thereto Punch Costello roared out mainly Etienne chanson but he loudly bid them lo, wisdom hath built herself a house, this vast majestic longstablished vault, the crystal palace of the Creator all in applepie order, a penny for him who finds the pea. A black crack of noise in the street here, alack, bawled, back.
Loud on left Thor thundered: in anger awful the hammerhurler. Came now the storm that hist his heart. And Master Lynch bade him have a care to flout and witwanton as the god self was angered for his hellprate and paganry. And he that had erst challenged to be so doughty waxed pale as they might all mark and shrank together and his pitch that was before so haught uplift was now of a sudden quite plucked down and his heart shook within the cage of his breast as he tasted the rumour of that storm.
Then did some mock and some jeer and Punch Costello fell hard again to his yale which Master Lenehan vowed he would do after and he was indeed but a word and a blow on any the least colour. But the braggart boaster cried that an old Nobodaddy was in his cups it was muchwhat indifferent and he would not lag behind his lead.
But this was only to dye his desperation as cowed he crouched in Horne's hall. He drank indeed at one draught to pluck up a heart of any grace for it thundered long rumblingly over all the heavens so that Master Madden, being godly certain whiles, knocked him on his ribs upon that crack of doom and Master Bloom, at the braggart's side spoke to him calming words to slumber his great fear, advertising how it was no other thing but a hubbub noise that he heard, the discharge of fluid from the thunderhead, look you, having taken place, and all of the order of a natural phenomenon.
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But was young Boasthard's fear vanquished by Calmer's words? No, for he had in his bosom a spike named Bitterness which could not by words be done away. And was he then neither calm like the one nor godly like the other? He was neither as much as he would have liked to be either. But could he not have endeavoured to have found again as in his youth the bottle Holiness that then he lived withal? Indeed not for Grace was not there to find that bottle. Heard he then in that clap the voice of the god Bringforth or, what Calmer said, a hubbub of Phenomenon?
Why, he could not but hear unless he had plugged up the tube Understanding which he had not done. For through that tube he saw that he was in the land of Phenomenon where he must for a certain one day die as he was like the rest too a passing show. And would he not accept to die like the rest and pass away? By no means would he and make more shows according as men do with wives which Phenomenon has commanded them to do by the book Law. Then wotted he nought of that other land which is called Believe-on-Me, that is the land of promise which behoves to the king Delightful and shall be for ever where there is no death and no birth neither wiving nor mothering at which all shall come as many as believe on it?
Yes, Pious had told him of that land and Chaste had pointed him to the way but the reason was that in the way he fell in with a certain whore of an eyepleasing exterior whose name, she said, is Bird-in-the-Hand and she beguiled him wrongways from the true path by her flatteries that she said to him as, Ho, you pretty man, turn aside hither and I will show you a brave place, and she lay at him so flatteringly that she had him in her grot which is named Two-in-the-Bush or, by some learned, Carnal Concupiscence.
This was it what all that company that sat there at commons in Manse of Mothers the most lusted after and if they met with this whore Bird-in-the-Hand which was within all foul plagues, monsters and a wicked devil they would strain the last but they would make at her and know her. For regarding Believe-on-Me they said it was nought else but notion and they could conceive no thought of it for, first, Two-in-the-Bush whither she ticed them was the very goodliest grot and in it were four pillows on which were four tickets with these words printed on them, Pickaback and Topsyturvy and Shameface and Cheek by Jowl and, second, for that foul plague Allpox and the monsters they cared not for them, for Preservative had given them a stout shield of oxengut and, third, that they might take no hurt neither from Offspring that was that wicked devil by virtue of this same shield which was named Killchild.
Wherein, O wretched company, were ye all deceived for that was the voice of the god that was in a very grievous rage that he would presently lift his arm and spill their souls for their abuses and their spillings done by them contrariwise to his word which forth to bring brenningly biddeth. So Thursday sixteenth June Patk. Dignam laid in clay of an apoplexy and after hard drought, please God, rained, a bargeman coming in by water a fifty mile or thereabout with turf saying the seed won't sprout, fields athirst, very sadcoloured and stunk mightily, the quags and tofts too.
Hard to breathe and all the young quicks clean consumed without sprinkle this long while back as no man remembered to be without. The rosy buds all gone brown and spread out blobs and on the hills nought but dry flags and faggots that would catch at first fire. All the world saying, for aught they knew, the big wind of last February a year that did havoc the land so pitifully a small thing beside this barrenness. But by and by, as said, this evening after sundown, the wind sitting in the west, biggish swollen clouds to be seen as the night increased and the weatherwise poring up at them and some sheet lightnings at first and after, past ten of the clock, one great stroke with a long thunder and in a brace of shakes all scamper pellmell within door for the smoking shower, the men making shelter for their straws with a clout or kerchief, womenfolk skipping off with kirtles catched up soon as the pour came.
In Ely place, Baggot street, Duke's lawn, thence through Merrion green up to Holles street, a swash of water running that was before bonedry and not one chair or coach or fiacre seen about but no more crack after that first. Over against the Rt. Mulligan a gentleman's gentleman that had but come from Mr Moore's the writer's that was a papish but is now, folk say, a good Williamite chanced against Alec. Bannon in a cut bob which are now In with dance cloaks of Kendal green that was new got to town from Mullingar with the stage where his coz and Mal M's brother will stay a month yet till Saint Swithin and asks what in the earth he does there, he bound home and he to Andrew Horne's being stayed for to crush a cup of wine, so he said, but would tell him of a skittish heifer, big of her age and beef to the heel and all this while poured with rain and so both together on to Horne's.
There Leop. Bloom of Crawford's journal sitting snug with a covey of wags, likely brangling fellows, Dixon jun. Lynch, a Scots fellow, Will. Madden, T. Lenehan, very sad for a racinghorse he fancied and Stephen D. Bloom there for a languor he had but was now better, he having dreamed tonight a strange fancy of his dame Mrs Moll with red slippers on in pair of Turkey trunks which is thought by those in ken to be for a change and Mistress Purefoy there, that got in through pleading her belly, and now on the stools, poor body, two days past her term, the midwives sore put to it and can't deliver, she queasy for a bowl of riceslop that is a shrewd drier up of the insides and her breath very heavy more than good and should be a bullyboy from the knocks they say, but God give her soon issue.
Her hub fifty odd and a methodist but takes the Sacrament and is to be seen any fair sabbath with a pair of his boys off Bullock harbour dapping on the sound with a heavybraked reel or in a punt he has trailing for flounder and pollock and catches a fine bag, I hear.
In sum an infinite great fall of rain and all refreshed and will much increase the harvest yet those in ken say after wind and water fire shall come for a prognostication of Malachi's almanac and I hear that Mr Russell has done a prophetical charm of the same gist out of the Hindustanish for his farmer's gazette to have three things in all but this a mere fetch without bottom of reason for old crones and bairns yet sometimes they are found in the right guess with their queerities no telling how.
Enfrente de la puerta del Muy Honorable juez Mr. Fitzgibbon que ha de deliberar con Mr. Healy el abogado sobre las tierras del colegio Mal. Bannon con el pelo corto que ahora se lleva igual que las capas de baile de verde Kendal que acababa de llegar a la ciudad desde Mullingar con la diligencia donde su primo y el hermano de Mal.
Lenehan, muy entristecido a causa de un caballo de carreras en el que puso sus ilusiones y Stephen D. With this came up Lenehan to the feet of the table to say how the letter was in that night's gazette and he made a show to find it about him for he swore with an oath that he had been at pains about it but on Stephen's persuasion he gave over to search and was bidden to sit near by which he did mighty brisk. He was a kind of sport gentleman that went for a merryandrew or honest pickle and what belonged of woman, horseflesh, or hot scandal he had it pat.
To tell the truth he was mean in fortunes and for the most part hankered about the coffeehouses and low taverns with crimps, ostlers, bookies, Paul's men, runners, flatcaps, waistcoateers, ladies of the bagnio and other rogues of the game or with a chanceable catchpole or a tipstaff often at nights till broad day of whom he picked up between his sackpossets much loose gossip.
He took his ordinary at a boiling-cook's and if he had but gotten into him a mess of broken victuals or a platter of tripes with a bare tester in his purse he could always bring himself off with his tongue, some randy quip he had from a punk or whatnot that every mother's son of them would burst their sides. The other, Costello, that is, hearing this talk asked was it poetry or a tale.
Faith, no, he says, Frank that was his name , 'tis all about Kerry cows that are to be butchered along of the plague. But they can go hang, says he with a wink, for me with their bully beef, a pox on it. There's as good fish in this tin as ever came out of it and very friendly he offered to take of some salty sprats that stood by which he had eyed wishly in the meantime and found the place which was indeed the chief design of his embassy as he was sharpset.
Mort aux vaches, says Frank then in the French language that had been indentured to a brandy shipper that has a winelodge in Bordeaux and he spoke French like a gentleman too. From a child this Frank had been a donought that his father, a headborough, who could ill keep him to school to learn his letters and the use of the globes, matriculated at the university to study the mechanics but he took the bit between his teeth like a raw colt and was more familiar with the justiciary and the parish beadle than with his volumes.
One time he would be a playactor, then a sutler or a welsher, then nought would keep him from the bearpit and the cocking main, then he was for the ocean sea or to hoof it on the roads with the Romany folk, kidnapping a squire's heir by favour or moonlight or fecking maid's linen or choking chickens behind a hedge. He had been off as many times as a cat has lives and back again with naked pockets as many more to his father the headborough who shed a pint of tears as often as he saw him.
What, says Mr Leopold with his hands across, that was earnest to know the drift of it, will they slaughter all? I protest I saw them but this day morning going to the Liverpool boats, says he. I can scarce believe 'tis so bad, says he. And he had experience of the like brood beasts and of springers, greasy hoggets and wether wools, having been some years before actuary for Mr Joseph Cuffe, a worthy salesmaster that drove his trade for live stock and meadow auctions hard by Mr Gavin Low's yard in Prussia street.
I question with you there, says he. More like 'tis the hoose of the timber tongue. Mr Stephen, a little moved but very handsomely, told him no such matter and that he had dispatches from the emperor's chief tailtickler thanking him for the hospitality, that was sending over Doctor Rinderpest, the bestquoted cowcatcher in all Muscovy, with a bolus or two of physic to take the bull by the horns. Come, come, says Mr Vincent, plain dealing. He'll find himself on the horns of a dilemma if he meddles with a bull that's Irish, says he.
Irish by name and Irish by nature, says Mr Stephen, and he sent the ale purling about. An Irish bull in an English chinashop. I conceive you, says Mr Dixon. It is that same bull that was sent to our island by farmer Nicholas, the bravest cattle breeder of them all, with an emerald ring in his nose. True for you, says Mr Vincent cross the table, and a bullseye into the bargain, says he, and a plumper and a portlier bull, says he, never shit on shamrock.
He had horns galore, a coat of gold and a sweet smoky breath coming out of his nostrils so that the women of our island, leaving doughballs and rollingpins, followed after him hanging his bulliness in daisychains. What for that, says Mr Dixon, but before he came over farmer Nicholas that was a eunuch had him properly gelded by a college of doctors, who were no better off than himself. So be off now, says he, and do all my cousin german the Lord Harry tells you and take a farmer's blessing, and with that he slapped his posteriors very soundly. But the slap and the blessing stood him friend, says Mr Vincent, for to make up he taught him a trick worth two of the other so that maid, wife, abbess and widow to this day affirm that they would rather any time of the month whisper in his ear in the dark of a cowhouse or get a lick on the nape from his long holy tongue then lie with the finest strapping young ravisher in the four fields of all Ireland.
Another then put in his word: And they dressed him, says he, in a point shift and petticoat with a tippet and girdle and ruffles on his wrists and clipped his forelock and rubbed him all over with spermacetic oil and built stables for him at every turn of the road with a gold manger in each full of the best hay in the market so that he could doss and dung to his heart's content.
By this time the father of the faithful for so they called him was grown so heavy that he could scarce walk to pasture. To remedy which our cozening dames and damsels brought him his fodder in their apronlaps and as soon as his belly was full he would rear up on his hind quarters to show their ladyships a mystery and roar and bellow out of him in bull's language and they all after him. Ay, says another, and so pampered was he that he would suffer nought to grow in all the land but green grass for himself for that was the only colour to his mind and there was a board put up on a hillock in the middle of the island with a printed notice, saying: By the lord Harry green is the grass that grows on the ground.
And, says Mr Dixon, if ever he got scent of a cattleraider in Roscommon or the wilds of Connemara or a husbandman in Sligo that was sowing as much as a handful of mustard or a bag of rapeseed out he run amok over half the countryside rooting up with his horns whatever was planted and all by lord Harry's orders. There was bad blood between them at first, says Mr Vincent, and the lord Harry called farmer Nicholas all the old Nicks in the world and an old whoremaster that kept seven trulls in his house and I'll meddle in his matters, says he.
I'll make that animal smell hell, says he, with the help of that good pizzle my father left me. But one evening, says Mr Dixon, when the lord Harry was cleaning his royal pelt to go to dinner after winning a boatrace he had spade oars for himself but the first rule of the course was that the others were to row with pitchforks he discovered in himself a wonderful likeness to a bull and on picking up a blackthumbed chapbook that he kept in the pantry he found sure enough that he was a lefthanded descendant of the famous champion bull of the Romans, Bos Bovum, which is good bog Latin for boss of the show.
After that, says Mr Vincent, the lord Harry put his head into a cow's drinking trough in the presence of all his courtiers and pulling it out again told them all his new name. Then, with the water running off him, he got into an old smock and skirt that had belonged to his grandmother and bought a grammar of the bull's language to study but he could never learn a word of it except the first personal pronoun which he copied out big and got off by heart and if ever he went out for a walk he filled his pockets with chalk to write it up on what took his fancy, the side of a rock or a teahouse table or a bale of cotton or a corkfloat.
In short he and the bull of Ireland were soon as fast friends as an arse and a shirt. They were, says Mr Stephen, and the end was that the men of the island, seeing no help was toward as the ungrate women were all of one mind, made a wherry raft, loaded themselves and their bundles of chattels on shipboard, set all masts erect, manned the yards, sprang their luff, heaved to, spread three sheets in the wind, put her head between wind and water, weighed anchor, ported her helm, ran up the jolly Roger, gave three times three, let the bullgine run, pushed off in their bumboat and put to sea to recover the main of America.
Which was the occasion, says Mr Vincent, of the composing by a boatswain of that rollicking chanty:. Gavin Low en Prussia Street. En eso discrepo de usted, dice. Venga, venga, dice Mr. Vincent, hablemos claro. Cojo la idea, dice Mr. Estoy con usted, dice Mr. Y, dice Mr. Hubo mala sangre entre ellos al principio, dice. Pero una noche, dice Mr. Tras eso, dice Mr. Fueron amigos, dice Mr. Vincent, a un contramaestre para componer aquella alegre saloma:. Our worthy acquaintance, Mr Malachi Mulligan, now appeared in the doorway as the students were finishing their apologue accompanied with a friend whom he had just rencountered, a young gentleman, his name Alec Bannon, who had late come to town, it being his intention to buy a colour or a cornetcy in the fencibles and list for the wars.
Mr Mulligan was civil enough to express some relish of it all the more as it jumped with a project of his own for the cure of the very evil that had been touched on. Whereat he handed round to the company a set of pasteboard cards which he had had printed that day at Mr Quinnell's bearing a legend printed in fair italics: Mr Malachi Mulligan, Fertiliser and Incubator, Lambay Island.
His project, as he went on to expound, was to withdraw from the round of idle pleasures such as form the chief business of sir Fopling Popinjay and sir Milksop Quidnunc in town and to devote himself to the noblest task for which our bodily organism has been framed. Well, let us hear of it, good my friend, said Mr Dixon. I make no doubt it smacks of wenching. Come, be seated, both. Mr Mulligan accepted of the invitation and, expatiating on his design, told his hearers that he had been led into this thought by a consideration of the causes of sterility, both the inhibitory and the prohibitory, whether the inhibition in its turn were due to conjugal vexations or to a parsimony of the balance as well as whether the prohibition proceeded from defects congenital or from proclivities acquired.
It grieved him plaguily, he said, to see the nuptial couch defrauded of its dearest pledges: and to reflect upon so many agreeable females with rich jointures, a prey for the vilest bonzes, who hide their flambeau under a bushel in an uncongenial cloister or lose their womanly bloom in the embraces of some unaccountable muskin when they might multiply the inlets of happiness, sacrificing the inestimable jewel of their sex when a hundred pretty fellows were at hand to caress, this, he assured them, made his heart weep. To curb this inconvenience which he concluded due to a suppression of latent heat , having advised with certain counsellors of worth and inspected into this matter, he had resolved to purchase in fee simple for ever the freehold of Lambay island from its holder, lord Talbot de Malahide, a Tory gentleman of not much in favour with our ascendancy party.
He proposed to set up there a national fertilising farm to be named Omphalos with an obelisk hewn and erected after the fashion of Egypt and to offer his dutiful yeoman services for the fecundation of any female of what grade of life soever who should there direct to him with the desire of fulfilling the functions of her natural. Money was no object, he said, nor would he take a penny for his pains.
The poorest kitchenwench no less than the opulent lady of fashion, if so be their constructions, and their tempers were warm persuaders for their petitions, would find in him their man. For his nutriment he shewed how he would feed himself exclusively upon a diet of savoury tubercles and fish and coneys there, the flesh of these latter prolific rodents being highly recommended for his purpose, both broiled and stewed with a blade of mace and a pod or two of capsicum chillies.
After this homily which he delivered with much warmth of asseveration Mr Mulligan in a trice put off from his hat a kerchief with which he had shielded it. The both, it seems, had been overtaken by the rain and for all their mending their pace had taken water, as might be observed by Mr Mulligan's smallclothes of a hodden grey which was now somewhat piebald. His project meanwhile was very favourably entertained by his auditors and won hearty eulogies from all though Mr Dixon of Mary's excepted to it, asking with a finicking air did he purpose also to carry coals to Newcastle.
Mr Mulligan however made court to the scholarly by an apt quotation from the classics which as it dwelt upon his memory seemed to him a sound and tasteful support of his contention: Talis ac tanta depravatio hujus seculi, O quirites, ut matres familiarum nostro lascivas cujuslibet semiviri libici titillationes testibus ponderosis atque excelsis erectionibus centurionum Romanorum magnopere anteponunt: while for those of ruder wit he drove home his point by analogies of the animal kingdom more suitable to their stomach, the buck and doe of the forest glade, the farmyard drake and duck.
Malachi Mulligan. Fertilizador e Incubador. Isla Lambay. Vamos, tomad asiento, ambos. Cuesta lo mismo estar sentado que de pie. Mulligan del color de la lana natural y que ahora estaban un tanto a lunares. Valuing himself not a little upon his elegance, being indeed a proper man of his person, this talkative now applied himself to his dress with animadversions of some heat upon the sudden whimsy of the atmospherics while the company lavished their encomiums upon the project he had advanced.
The young gentleman, his friend, overjoyed as he was at a passage that had befallen him, could not forbear to tell it his nearest neighbour. Mr Mulligan, now perceiving the table, asked for whom were those loaves and fishes and, seeing the stranger, he made him a civil bow and said, Pray, sir, was you in need of any professional assistance we could give? Who, upon his offer, thanked him very heartily, though preserving his proper distance, and replied that he was come there about a lady, now an inmate of Horne's house, that was in an interesting condition, poor lady, from woman's woe and here he fetched a deep sigh to know if her happiness had yet taken place.
Mr Dixon, to turn the table, took on to ask Mr Mulligan himself whether his incipient ventripotence, upon which he rallied him, betokened an ovoblastic gestation in the prostatic utricle or male womb or was due as with the noted physician, Mr Austin Meldon, to a wolf in the stomach. For answer Mr Mulligan, in a gale of laughter at his smalls, smote himself bravely below the diaphragm, exclaiming with an admirable droll mimic of Mother Grogan the most excellent creature of her sex though 'tis pity she's a trollop : There's a belly that never bore a bastard.
This was so happy a conceit that it renewed the storms of mirth and threw the whole room into the most violent agitations of delight. The spry rattle had run on in the same vein of mimicry but for some larum in the antechamber. Por respuesta Mr. Here the listener, who was none other than the Scotch student, a little fume of a fellow, blond as tow, congratulated in the liveliest fashion with the young gentleman and, interrupting the narrative at a salient point, having desired his visavis with a polite beck to have the obligingness to pass him a flagon of cordial waters at the same time by a questioning pose of the head a whole century of polite breeding had not achieved so nice a gesture to which was united an equivalent but contrary balance of the head, asked the narrator as plainly as was ever done in words if he might treat him with a cup of it.
That you may and very opportunely. There wanted nothing but this cup to crown my felicity. But, gracious heaven, was I left with but a crust in my wallet and a cupful of water from the well, my God, I would accept of them and find it in my heart to kneel down upon the ground and give thanks to the powers above for the happiness vouchsafed me by the Giver of good things. With these words he approached the goblet to his lips, took a complacent draught of the cordial, slicked his hair and, opening his bosom, out popped a locket that hung from a silk riband that very picture which he had cherished ever since her hand had wrote therein.
Gazing upon those features with a world of tenderness, Ah, Monsieur, he said, had you but beheld her as I did with these eyes at that affecting instant with her dainty tucker and her new coquette cap a gift for her feast day as she told me in such an artless disorder, of so melting a tenderness, 'pon my conscience, even you, Monsieur, had been impelled by generous nature to deliver yourself wholly into the hands of such an enemy or to quit the field for ever.
I declare, I was never so touched in all my life. God I thank thee as the Author of my days! Thrice happy will he be whom so amiable a creature will bless with her favours. A sigh of affection gave eloquence to these words and, having replaced the locket in his bosom, he wiped his eye and sighed again. Beneficent Disseminator of blessing to all Thy creatures, how great and universal must be that sweetest of Thy tyrannies which can hold in thrall the free and the bond, the simple swain and the polished coxcomb, the lover in the heyday of reckless passion and the husband of maturer years.
But indeed, sir, I wander from the point. How mingled and imperfect are all our sublunary joys! Would to God that foresight had remembered me to take my cloak along! I could weep to think of it. Then, though it had poured seven showers, we were neither of us a penny the worse. But beshrew me, he cried, clapping hand to his forehead, tomorrow will be a new day and, thousand thunders, I know of a marchand de capotes, Monsieur Poyntz, from whom I can have for a livre as snug a cloak of the French fashion as ever kept a lady from wetting. Tut, Tut! A drenching of that violence, he tells me, sans blague, has sent more than one luckless fellow in good earnest posthaste to another world.
A livre! The clumsy things are dear at a sou. One umbrella, were it no bigger than a fairy mushroom, is worth ten such stopgaps. No woman of any wit would wear one. My dear Kitty told me today that she would dance in a deluge before ever she would starve in such an ark of salvation for, as she reminded me blushing piquantly and whispering in my ear though there was none to snap her words but giddy butterflies , dame Nature, by the divine blessing, has implanted it in our heart and it has become a household word that il y a deux choses for which the innocence of our original garb, in other circumstances a breach of the proprieties, is the fittest nay, the only, garment.
The first, said she and here my pretty philosopher, as I handed her to her tilbury, to fix my attention, gently tipped with her tongue the outer chamber of my ear , the first is a bath Pardiez que puede y muy convenientemente. Os digo, nunca de tal manera estuve tan tocado en mi vida. Esas cosas indecentes son caras hasta por una gorda. Amid the general vacant hilarity of the assembly a bell rang and while all were conjecturing what might be the cause Miss Callan entered and, having spoken a few words in a low tone to young Mr Dixon, retired with a profound bow to the company.
The presence even for a moment among a party of debauchees of a woman endued with every quality of modesty and not less severe than beautiful refrained the humorous sallies even of the most licentious but her departure was the signal for an outbreak of ribaldry. Strike me silly, said Costello, a low fellow who was fuddled. A monstrous fine bit of cow-flesh! I'll be sworn she has rendezvoused you. What, you dog? Have you a way with them?
Gad's bud. Immensely so, said Mr Lynch. The bedside manner it is that they use in the Mater hospice. Demme, does not Doctor O'Gargle chuck the nuns there under the chin? As I look to be saved I had it from my Kitty who has been wardmaid there any time these seven months. Lawksamercy, doctor, cried the young blood in the primrose vest, feigning a womanish simper and immodest squirmings of his body, how you do tease a body! Drat the man! Bless me, I'm all of a wibblywobbly.
Why, you're as bad as dear little Father Cantekissem that you are! May this pot of four half choke me, cried Costello, if she ain't in the family way. I knows a lady what's got a white swelling quick as I claps eyes on her. The young surgeon, however, rose and begged the company to excuse his retreat as the nurse had just then informed him that he was needed in the ward. Merciful providence had been pleased to put a period to the sufferings of the lady who was enceinte which she had borne with a laudable fortitude and she had given birth to a bouncing boy.
I want patience, said he, with those who without wit to enliven or learning to instruct, revile an ennobling profession which, saving the reverence due to the Deity, is the greatest power for happiness upon the earth. I am positive when I say that if need were I could produce a cloud of witnesses to the excellence of her noble exercitations which, so far from being a byword, should be a glorious incentive in the human breast.
I cannot away with them. Malign such an one, the amiable Miss Callan, who is the lustre of her own sex and the astonishment of ours and at an instant the most momentous that can befall a puny child of clay? Perish the thought! I shudder to think of the future of a race where the seeds of such malice have been sown and where no right reverence is rendered to mother and maid in house of Horne. Having delivered himself of this rebuke he saluted those present on the by and repaired to the door. A murmur of approval arose from all and some were for ejecting the low soaker without more ado, a design which would have been effected nor would he have received more than his bare deserts had he not abridged his transgression by affirming with a horrid imprecation for he swore a round hand that he was as good a son of the true fold as ever drew breath.
Stap my vitals, said he, them was always the sentiments of honest Frank Costello which I was bred up most particular to honour thy father and thy mother that had the best hand to a rolypoly or a hasty pudding as you ever see what I always looks back on with a loving heart. El cielo me confunda, dijo Costello, un bribonzuelo que estaba ajumado. Vamos, que no te las sabes arreglar con ellas. Diantres, se las sabe todas, dijo Mr. Estoy tiembla que tiembla. No puedo sufrirlos. Me estremezco al pensar en el futuro de una raza donde se han sembrado las semillas de una tal malicia y donde no se otorga el debido respeto a la maternidad ni a la doncellez en la casa de Home.
To revert to Mr Bloom who, after his first entry, had been conscious of some impudent mocks which he, however, had borne with being the fruits of that age upon which it is commonly charged that it knows not pity. The young sparks, it is true, were as full of extravagancies as overgrown children: the words of their tumultuary discussions were difficultly understood and not often nice: their testiness and outrageous mots were such that his intellects resiled from: nor were they scrupulously sensible of the proprieties though their fund of strong animal spirits spoke in their behalf.
But the word of Mr Costello was an unwelcome language for him for he nauseated the wretch that seemed to him a cropeared creature of a misshapen gibbosity born out of wedlock and thrust like a crookback teethed and feet first into the world, which the dint of the surgeon's pliers in his skull lent indeed a colour to, so as it put him in thought of that missing link of creation's chain desiderated by the late ingenious Mr Darwin.
It was now for more than the middle span of our allotted years that he had passed through the thousand vicissitudes of existence and, being of a wary ascendancy and self a man of a rare forecast, he had enjoined his heart to repress all motions of a rising choler and, by intercepting them with the readiest precaution, foster within his breast that plenitude of sufferance which base minds jeer at, rash judgers scorn and all find tolerable and but tolerable.
To those who create themselves wits at the cost of feminine delicacy a habit of mind which he never did hold with to them he would concede neither to bear the name nor to herit the tradition of a proper breeding: while for such that, having lost all forbearance, can lose no more, there remained the sharp antidote of experience to cause their insolency to beat a precipitate and inglorious retreat. Not but what he could feel with mettlesome youth which, caring nought for the mows of dotards or the gruntlings of the severe, is ever as the chaste fancy of the Holy Writer express it for eating of the tree forbid it yet not so far forth as to pretermit humanity upon any condition soever towards a gentlewoman when she was about her lawful occasions.
To conclude, while from the sister's words he had reckoned upon a speedy delivery he was, however, it must be owned, not a little alleviated by the intelligence that the issue so auspicated after an ordeal of such duress now testified once more to the mercy as well as to the bounty of the Supreme Being. Volviendo a Mr. Pero las palabras de Mr. Accordingly he broke his mind to his neighbour, saying that, to express his notion of the thing, his opinion who ought not perchance to express one was that one must have a cold constitution and a frigid genius not to be rejoiced by this freshest news of the fruition of her confinement since she had been in such pain through no fault of hers.
The dressy young blade said it was her husband's that put her in that expectation or at least it ought to be unless she were another Ephesian matron. I must acquaint you, said Mr Crothers, clapping on the table so as to evoke a resonant comment of emphasis, old Glory Allelujerum was round again to-day, an elderly man with dundrearies, preferring through his nose a request to have word of Wilhelmina, my life, as he calls her.
I bade him hold himself in readiness for that the event would burst anon. I cannot but extol the virile potency of the old bucko that could still knock another child out of her. All fell to praising of it, each after his own fashion, though the same young blade held with his former view that another than her conjugial had been the man in the gap, a clerk in orders, a linkboy virtuous or an itinerant vendor of articles needed in every household.
Singular, communed the guest with himself, the wonderfully unequal faculty of metempsychosis possessed by them, that the puerperal dormitory and the dissecting theatre should be the seminaries of such frivolity, that the mere acquisition of academic titles should suffice to transform in a pinch of time these votaries of levity into exemplary practitioners of an art which most men anywise eminent have esteemed the noblest. But, he further added, it is mayhap to relieve the pentup feelings that in common oppress them for I have more than once observed that birds of a feather laugh together.
Debo informaros, dijo Mr. But with what fitness, let it be asked, of the noble lord, his patron, has this alien, whom the concession of a gracious prince has admitted to civil rights, constituted himself the lord paramount of our internal polity? Where is now that gratitude which loyalty should have counselled?
During the recent war whenever the enemy had a temporary advantage with his granados did this traitor to his kind not seize that moment to discharge his piece against the empire of which he is a tenant at will while he trembled for the security of his four per cents? Has he forgotten this as he forgets all benefits received? Or is it that from being a deluder of others he has become at last his own dupe as he is, if report belie him not his own and his only enjoyer? Far be it from candour to violate the bedchamber of a respectable lady, the daughter of a gallant major, or to cast the most distant reflections upon her virtue but if he challenges attention there as it was indeed highly his interest not to have done then be it so.
Unhappy woman she has been too long and too persistently denied her legitimate prerogative to listen to his objurgations with any other feeling than the derision of the desperate. He says this, a censor of morals, a very pelican in his piety, who did not scruple, oblivious of the ties of nature, to attempt illicit intercourse with a female domestic drawn from the lowest strata of society. Nay, had the hussy's scouringbrush not been her tutelary angel it had gone with her as hard as with Hagar, the Egyptian!
In the question of the grazing lands his peevish asperity is notorious and in Mr Cuffe's hearing brought upon him from an indignant rancher a scathing retort couched in terms as straightforward as they were bucolic. It ill becomes him to preach that gospel. Has he not nearer home a seed-field that lies fallow for the want of a ploughshare?
A habit reprehensible at puberty is second nature and an opprobium in middlelife. If he must dispense his balm of Gilead in nostrums and apothegms of dubious taste to restore to health a generation of unfledged profligates let his practice consist better with the doctrines that now engross him. His marital breast is the repository of secrets which decorum is reluctant to adduce. The lewd suggestions of some faded beauty may console him for a consort neglected and debauched but this new exponent of morals and healer of ills is at his best an exotic tree which, when rooted in its native orient, throve and flourished and was abundant in balm but, transplanted to a clime more temperate, its roots have lost their quondam vigour while the stuff that comes away from it is stagnant, acid and inoperative.
En cuanto al asunto de los pastizales su agriada aspereza es notoria y en presencia de Mr. Su pecho marital es el depositario de secretos que el decoro es reacio a mencionar. The news was imparted with a circumspection recalling the ceremonial usages of the Sublime Porte by the second female infirmarian to the junior medical officer in residence, who in his turn announced to the delegation that an heir had been born. When he had betaken himself to the women's apartment to assist at the prescribed ceremony of the afterbirth in the presence of the secretary of state for domestic affairs and the members of the privy council, silent in unanimous exhaustion and approbation, the delegates, chafing under the length and solemnity of their vigil and hoping that the joyful occurrence would palliate a licence which the simultaneous absence of abigail and officer rendered the easier, broke out at once into a strife of tongues.
In vain the voice of Mr Canvasser Bloom was heard endeavouring to urge, to mollify, to restrain.
Sexuality and Social Control in Mexico, c. 1901
The moment was too propitious for the display of that discursiveness which seemed the only bond of union among tempers so divergent. The gravest problems of obstetrics and forensic medicine were examined with as much animation as the most popular beliefs on the state of pregnancy such as the forbidding to a gravid woman to step over a country stile lest, by her movement, the navelcord should strangle her creature and the injunction upon her in the event of a yearning, ardently and ineffectually entertained, to place her hand against that part of her person which long usage has consecrated as the seat of castigation.
The abnormalities of harelip, breastmole, supernumerary digits, negro's inkle, strawberry mark and portwine stain were alleged by one as a primafacie and natural hypothetical explanation of swineheaded the case of Madame Grissel Steevens was not forgotten or doghaired infants occasionally born. The hypothesis of a plasmic memory, advanced by the taledonian envoy and worthy of the metaphysical traditions of the land he stood for, envisaged in such cases an arrest of embryonic development at some stage antecedent to the human.
An outlandish delegate sustained against both these views with such heat as almost carried conviction the theory of copulation between women and the males of brutes, his authority being his own avouchment in support of fables such as that of the Minotaur which the genius of the elegant Latin poet has handed down to us in the pages of his Metamorphoses. The impression made by his words was immediate but shortlived.
It was effaced as easily as it had been evoked by an allocution from Mr Candidate Mulligan in that vein of pleasantry which none better than he knew know to affect, postulating as the supremest object of desire a nice clean old man. Contemporaneously, a heated argument having arisen between Mr Delegate Madden and Mr Candidate Lynch regarding the juridical and theological dilemma in the even of one Siamese twin predeceasing the other, the difficulty by mutual consent was referred to Mr Canvasser Bloom for instant submittal to Mr Coadjutor Deacon Dedalus.
Hitherto silent, whether the better to show by preternatural gravity that curious dignity of the garb with which he was invested or in obedience to an inward voice, he delivered briefly, and as some thought perfunctorily, the ecclesiastical ordinance forbidding man to put asunder what God has joined. En vano la voz de Mr. Delegado Madden y Mr. Agente de Publicidad Bloom para sometimiento urgente a Mr. But Malachias' tale began to freeze them with horror.
He conjured up the scene before them. The secret panel beside the chimney slid back and in the recess appeared Which of us did not feel his flesh creep? He had a portfolio full of Celtic literature in one hand, in the other a phial marked Poison. Surprise, horror, loathing were depicted on all faces while he eyed them with a ghastly grin. I anticipated some such reception, he began with an eldritch laugh, for which, it seems, history is to blame.
Yes, it is true. I am the murderer of Samuel Childs. And how I am punished! The inferno has no terrors for me. This is the appearance is on me. Tare and ages, what way would I be resting at all, he muttered thickly, and I tramping Dublin this while back with my share of songs and himself after me the like of a soulth or a bullawurrus? My hell, and Ireland's, is in this life.
It is what I tried to obliterate my crime. Distractions, rookshooting, the Erse language he recited some , laudanum he raised the phial to his lips , camping out. In vain! His spectre stalks me. Dope is my only hope The black panther! With a cry he suddenly vanished and the panel slid back. An instant later his head appeared in the door opposite and said: Meet me at Westland row station at ten past eleven.
He was gone! Tears gushed from the eyes of the dissipated host. The seer raised his hand to heaven, murmuring: The vendetta of Mananaan! The sage repeated Lex talionis. The sentimentalist is he who would enjoy without incurring the immense debtorship for a thing done.
Malachias, overcome by emotion, ceased. The mystery was unveiled. Haines was the third brother. His real name was Childs. The black panther was himself the ghost of his own father. He drank drugs to obliterate. For this relief much thanks. The lonely house by the graveyard is uninhabited. No soul will live there. The spider pitches her web in the solitude. The nocturnal rat peers from his hole.
A curse is on it. It is haunted. Murderer's ground. Yo soy el asesino de Samuel Childs. Su espectro me sigue los pasos. Se fue. Haines era el tercer hermano. Su verdadero nombre era Childs. La pantera negra era ella misma el espectro de su propio padre. Por este consuelo muchas gracias. La casa abandonada cerca del cementerio estaba deshabitada.
La rata nocturna acecha desde su agujero. What is the age of the soul of man? As she hath the virtue of the chameleon to change her hue at every new approach, to be gay with the merry and mournful with the downcast, so too is her age changeable as her mood. No longer is Leopold, as he sits there, ruminating, chewing the cud of reminiscence, that staid agent of publicity and holder of a modest substance in the funds.
He is young Leopold, as in a retrospective arrangement, a mirror within a mirror hey, presto! That young figure of then is seen, precociously manly, walking on a nipping morning from the old house in Clambrassil street to the high school, his book satchel on him bandolierwise, and in it a goodly hunk of wheaten loaf, a mother's thought.
Or it is the same figure, a year or so gone over, in his first hard hat ah, that was a day! The scent, the smile but more than these, the dark eyes and oleaginous address brought home at duskfall many a commission to the head of the firm seated with Jacob's pipe after like labours in the paternal ingle a meal of noodles, you may be sure, is aheating , reading through round horned spectacles some paper from the Europe of a month before.
But hey, presto, the mirror is breathed on and the young knighterrant recedes, shrivels, to a tiny speck within the mist. Now he is himself paternal and these about him might be his sons. Who can say? The wise father knows his own child. He thinks of a drizzling night in Hatch street, hard by the bonded stores there, the first. Together she is a poor waif, a child of shame, yours and mine and of all for a bare shilling and her luck-penny , together they hear the heavy tread of the watch as two raincaped shadows pass the new royal university. Bridie Kelly!
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He will never forget the name, ever remember the night, first night, the bridenight. They are entwined in nethermost darkness, the willer with the willed, and in an instant fiat! Did heart leap to heart? Nay, fair reader. In a breath 'twas done but - hold!
It must not be! In terror the poor girl flees away through the murk. She is the bride of darkness, a daughter of night. She dare not bear the sunnygolden babe of day. No, Leopold! Name and memory solace thee not. That youthful illusion of thy strength was taken from thee and in vain. No son of thy loins is by thee. There is none now to be for Leopold, what Leopold was for Rudolph.
Ahora es el joven Leopoldo. Pero ah, y listo, el espejo se enturbia y el joven caballero errante se evapora, se consume, queda convertido en un punto diminuto en la niebla. No, amable lector. Es la novia de las tinieblas, hija de la noche. No, Leopoldo. El nombre y el recuerdo no son consuelo para ti. Nadie hay ahora que sea para Leopoldo, lo que Leopoldo fue para Rudolph.
The voices blend and fuse in clouded silence: silence that is the infinite of space: and swiftly, silently the soul is wafted over regions of cycles of cycles of generations that have lived.