Sunday, June 16, 2013

Song - Bülbüllər Oxur

Vacation at last! Time for music and language. I've picked a xalq mahnısı that you hear played a lot in Baku. I got the words from my little green book, Min Bir Mahnı. I found a couple of recordings online. You can listen to Səvavet Məmmədov or Elmira Rehimova. They are both wonderful renditions. The incomparable Şövkət Ələkbərova has audio on the Muğam Radio site. However, as always, I have many questions that need answering. Şövkət Xanım's version is exactly as below. The other two differ in that Səvavet says "gözəl" instead of oğlan and he leaves out the middle stanza. Elmira Xanım changes a few lines - "Ləbin qoy" for "Üzün qoy" and a few others. All sing a bit of mugham before the final verse. Is this Segah? They all sing different verses from what I can tell. It would be nice to find the words written out somewhere.

Apart from the differences in the recordings, it is hard to interpret the song. It seems clear to me that the singer/speaker is a woman, but my online expert, Alef, says that these songs are never written from a woman's point-of-view. Hard to know what to do with all of those üstəs as well! I need to go help a friend who is moving tomorrow, so will return to type up my translation this afternoon. In the meantime, all advice will be gratefully received!... I'm back and the translation is complete. Thanks to the anonymous poster of an early translation - lovely to work together with others who share a passion for this music. Look forward to more comments.

Bülbüllər Oxur
Xalq mahnısı

Bülbüllər oxur,
Cəh-cəh vurur, bağda gül üstə.
Ay oğlan, boyu bəstə,
Gəl, əyləş çəmən üstə,
Sən məndən könül istə,
Mən deyim: gözüm üstə.

Nightingales Sing

Nightingales sing,
Warbling on flowers in the garden.
Hey, my slender boy,
Come, sit on the greensward,
Ask for my heart,
And I will tell you it is yours.

Bəh-bəh, nə gözəl
Candır, məgər sərvi-rəvandır,
Oğlan, getmə amandır,
Məni başına dolandır,
Üzün qoy üzüm üstə,
Əcəb yaxşı zamandır.

Hey, what a beautiful form,
Is he not like the smooth cypress,
Ah, don't go,
Stay with me,
Put your face next to mine,
The time is right.

Altında boz at,
Çiynində tüfəng, belində qatarı,
Ay oğlan, sən Tanrı, dolan gəl bizə sarı.
Gələrsən qadan allam,
Gədərsən yola sallam.

Riding a grey steed,
Rifle on your shoulder, bandolier around your waist,
Hey my slender boy, for the love of God, turn and come our way.
If you come, I will welcome you,
If you go, I will bid you farewell.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for making paid attention towards another beautiful song.
I just tried to take this opportunity that you have not post translation. I just like doing translation, however I'm not good.
I decided to post following amateur work.


Nightingales singing,
Trilling high, in the garden on the flower
Hey boy, height shorter,
Come, sit on the sward,
Request my heart,
And I’ll tell: that is all right.

Hey-hey, so beautiful
Life, like mellifluous cypress,
Boy, do not go, it is alas,
Took me close to you,
Your face adjacent to mine,
Spend wonderful time.

Riding grey horse,
Rifle on shoulder, cartridge-belt on waist,
Hey boy, for the sake of God, make tour toward us.
If you come, I’ll welcome
If you gone, I’ll see you off


I know this is not so good.
However I am looking forward yours.

Thanks.

Colleen MacDonell said...

That's very interesting and helpful that you have posted this. I like some of your word choices. I am definitely going to adapt my translation now! It is really fascinating to try to convey the meaning and feeling of these songs in English, isn't it. I hope you like my translation...

Anonymous said...

I'm happy to hear that.
Yes, you are completely right. That is fascinating and good hobby for me.

Anyway, I liked your translation very much. It is clear and words are so figurative. I mean chosen well. And your sentences are rich.

However I'm not professional in both English and Writing poets, It is pity, but I cannot give its desirable value.
No word needed I can only say that you are doing good work as usual.

By the way I just tried to keep rhythm but now I see a lot of grammatical errors while a little part of it I did purposely.

Colleen MacDonell said...

Your contribution to the blog is inspiring. I will keep working away at song translations. Please continue to give your feedback!