"Pringles is a very laid-back company. Originally, they wanted to make tennis balls. But when the truck showed up full of potatoes, they just said, "Fuck it, cut 'em up." Mitch Hedberg

12 April 2012

Day 12: Chassis of the Saint

This is a homophonic translation of a passage from "She Says," a remarkable book by Venus Khoury-Ghata. Homophonic translation is unapologetically nonsensical, and I found the prompt a refreshing deviation from Just Sitting Down and Writing THAT Poem Again. Plus, it summons portions of our vocabularies that we forget are there. 

Chassis of the Saint

The few who ravage the dare, nay, yea.
Comets intend challah, the chassis of the saint.
Brulee the hours; day, she robs,
eats, leaves, the mission quells unlit debris
for miles, years.

The dangers, an alpha-beta fount;
the sordid or I; lords quell anemones
seeping apartment volleyballs;
eat consomme.

The lemur's role, she limits
a tourniquet, lest Pa gets day lemurs, aye;
just because—O—their knees err,
O ball abutments, day sergeants.


  1. Anne, that's one cool "transliteration," as they're called by some poets. Did you compare it with Marilyn Hacker's actual (real) translation? Also, is the original poem somewhere online ... I'd love to compare what you homophonicalized with the original.

    My blog was featured on NaPoWriMo.net on Day 11. I've also been featuring other people's poem-a-day blogs on mine.

    Could I have permission to feature your blog? Nothing you have to do. I'll just post on my blog a very brief description of yours and a link, plus a screencap which is also a link to the blog. Take a look at my blog to see the features so far (since Day 8). Just about to feature Anna Montgomery's "Chromapoesy" later on today.

    Thanks! Could you get back to me asap? You can respond here or comment on my most recent blog post.

  2. P.S. (Vince again.) I was just wondering what the title was of the passage, or rather the title of the poem from which the passage came.

    I've published a couple of Khoury-Ghata's poems in Marilyn Hacker's translations, so I might have the poem around the office somewhere.


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