Rilke Translated into Californian

David Bromige, who died this month, translated Rilke’s famous “Autumn” poem into Californian :

Fall

(Rilke into Californian)

      Man, where'd the time go? Detroit?.
      But summer was really, really great.

      Stand that side of the sundial, will ya?
      I want to dig the shadows.

      Robert Duncan's freaking in the meadow.

      Those apples can't get a whole lot riper.
      Give em a couple more hot days.
      My friends who have the winery are already making the wine.

      It's getting chilly, nights. If you don't have a pad by now,
      Too bad. If you're not seeing someone
      You're likely stuck that way, they went back to school.

      Crack a book yourself. Write in Starbucks.
      Go walkabout downtown. [Time passes]. Hey, lookit
      the leaves, wind, etc. doing their thing. Rustle rustle.
      Contrast and compare yourself. Cool!

Here is the original German, plus three translations (mine included).

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One thought on “Rilke Translated into Californian

  1. I…like it.
    I have decided to expose myself to more poetry and I plan on using your site as a means to that end. I am compelled to do this after being exposed to too many ‘praise and worship’ songs. If you doubt the importance of poetry try listening to a few of those. You’ll come away screaming ‘get these people some poetry!’

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