Grandinis hibernos

Songs of Nova Solyma, I.


Grandinis hibernos Boreas exsolverat imbres,
Brumaque Iudaei iam parte recesserat anni,
Et caput abdiderat lapsum tellure sub alta,
Cum petit obliquo coeli fastigia cursu
Sol pater, et lentis crudam coquit ignibus auram.
Parturit omnis ager; silvaeque herbaeque recentes;
Et viridem pictis intexunt floribus oram;
Vocibus et blandis coeli iucunda salutat
Lumina progenies pecudum; pubesque volantum
Per nemus omne canit, nidis emissa relictis.
In se mersa fluit glacies; et laeta propago
Ludit ubique vadis; nullisque offensa procellis
Aequora marmorei rident immania ponti.

Boreas’ ice-chilled breath has blown cold rains far away.
Winter, its time now passed, moves on from the country of Judah,
Hiding its wrinkled, grey head beneath the dank deeps of the earth.
Father of all, the Sun, climbing up to the towers of heaven,
Warms the spring air with his fiery blaze as he flies to his throne.
Field and stirred wood now bloom, giving birth to a sea of green,
Clothing and painting their child with endless color of flowers.
Calves, in their joy of new life, greet the high heavens with lowing,
As do the birds’ little children, flapping their wings through the air.
Streams lined with ice melt away; their shallows bubble with fish
Enjoying the days when the Sea, not raging in lonely storms,
Laughs with a quiet peace, at one with its brother Sky.

Samuel Gott’s 1948 novel Nova Solyma is peppered thick with poetry, and I have a hunch that they play a part as important as the prose. So I’ll be posting the poems, sometimes (as here) with my own translation, or I may draw from Begley’s English translation linked below.

In this translation I’ve tried to preserve the hexameter in English, like so:
BOreas’ ICE-chilled BREATH has BLOWN cold RAINS far aWAY.
WINter, its TIME now PASSED, moves ON from the COUNtry of JUdah.

source (Latin)

source (Begley's English translation)