Georgians Think and Reason in Rhyme
22 November, 2012

 

This enticing poem was written impromptu and its translation was made even more spontaneously – just on the crest of rushed-on emotions and the encroached meditations in both of them – the author and the translator. She went to a Russian-language school and, naturally, feels more at ease to write her always modestly-presented poetry in Russian.

 

This one was meant to be set to music for club singing. If it actually happens, we will have a chance to see the music

notes too. Tata Tamliani will not accept to be called a poet although she is a talented linguist and a very refined administrator.  ‘On Life’s Edge’ made such a momentary and powerful impression on me that I wanted to translate it forthwith from Russian into English. A young quivering female soul is talking to us at the very instant of her standing right on the verge of success and failure. The thought instigated by the poem makes one feel seemingly pessimistic but when going deeper into it, one cannot help sensing the optimistic rationale which draws the picture of its lyrical character as of a lady of determination and will. What stamina! I did not know this Georgian lady could think and reason in rhyme, using the Russian language as a poetic medium. What a delight to recognize that the distaff side in Georgia today are so poised to fight for life and still remain as romantic and dignified as that. This poem and Tata’s personality go hand in hand as one invincible whole. Good luck to both of them!

 

On Life’s Edge

 

Whirls my head and twirls my brain - what a mess!

I feel detached, I am flying, off I went . . .

Dots go round, brackets clenching, and I guess

It’s my fate to be lonely on life’s edge.

I am starting - I am starting just from scratch,

I lost the gist and got it back, but seared and burnt,

Knocked at doors and asked for solace - not for patch,

Irreversibly, unnoticed - in wisdom’s search.

Thoughts assaulting, rhythms off tune and dreams in plenty,

I do hurry, lacking something, short of words,

Lashes flash and feast begins to hear the ranting:

Two and three . . . and heart explodes with the world.

Whirls my head and twirls my brain - what a mess!

I feel detached, I am flying, off I went . . .

Dots go round, brackets clenching, and I guess

It’s my fate to be lonely on life’s edge.

Written by Tata Tamliani

Translated by Nugzar B. Ruhadze

 

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