##“Káqha-yoâqes xhwókh tú-sur-ing!” paje-tsaqnelónge Xhaûrlro kus jhùrsa’ Alixhlinye-yàswaor. “Khmetitor-oâqes xhyei-pejos texh-ing?”
“Woe! You are not paying attention!” chanted the Squirrel Mouse, being rhadamanthine to Alixhlìnye. “Of what are you thinking, girl?”
“Pú xhw-opaingakh xhrongújor pón-e-xhrejor,” sei-paje-xhlothelónge qhi-yAlixhlìnye. “Prí prí qìr xhré xhré qhàtuko sir íkh-utakh toaqing pfhìqhelott tú joe xing?”
“I truly am ashamed of myself,” chanted Alixhlìnye humbly. “You had twirled into the fifth position of ballet in your story, meh?”
“Xhneweir-òntet tlhìlkhema’ euxaixíxoi xhroe’ ijára-yaxúng-ùpwar quja pú-xhrejor-sa’ ingèxhmes ei quja’!” òrpyel paje-yeiléja Xhaurlro-yàxhwa khmauxhnantu-yeîlwai’ akinaluqhang-empai-yeîlwai.
“My story was neither curving not knotted with ballet, in fact, but rather ‘twas simple!” cried out, saying the Squirrel Mouse, being sharp and very angry.
“Tlhilkhema-yájhei’ ei? S-opaingate khréxhye tlhilkhema-yòlkha toe xhrepla-yònwo’ euxaixì-yatser tú-xing?” khyéja’ Alixhlìnye kus qtae-yoakhwe-yòtyus pón kus lweirothie-yoâqe tyeûqnepa kexhe-yoafhe-xing. “Xhlipíreu’ ewokhei! Ás akútil tú-xing-epyer fhóyar-àmpeis jhèqhena toaqing xhmiît xhnèweir tú-yan-ing!”
“Is it tangled? Does your tail accidentally become knotted when you dance?” chanted Alixhlìnye, who was eternally prepared to be useful herself, and who was glancing, being anxious around her. “Evoe! Go on! Be it that you dance, and I shall untie the knots in your knot tying tail!”
“Qathajhelónge-yaipoit-ànwa khnón-e-xhrejor khuswo-yùtya pú-yan-anwa!” paje-khwilìfhufhu Xhaûrlro koaqing kormàntu koaqing tsàtsu lraûkh. “Xòfhyaya pú-xhrejor xuxurfhre-yan-àlyir khàqyoka kúl-ùtya!”
“I shall behave as one doing no ballet at all,” chanted the Squirrel Mouse, as he got up, as he walked away. “You insult me on purpose, as you discuss such flapdoodle!”
“Tneingpèntu suju tú-xhrejor-ing-e-sa pú!” xhyùpuqho xhmiîyeqhe’ ei-xhrejor Alixhlìnye fhalepyortlháqes. “Eiqhor-jhpiilkhantu-yònxhing qtoe tú!”
“I did not intend to tease you, in fact,” pled, chanted white necked Alixhlìnye. “However, you easily take offense, I understand!”
Fhirem-ùpwarn xhnoe Xhaurlro-yùpwar teiqha-khrèpti pae xing.
The Squirrel Mouse only growled for his reply.
“Tsilúqhi-yétyaî-yoriess sixe-qthartqamat-èxhyeu jhpii-yùpwar tú-xhrejor-ing pón-e-xhmi tú!” qhèwoku paje-tàfhli’ Alixhlìnye koxha-yoaka-xing-epyer jhèpa pejor xhwó-xing xekhya-jhorne-xùxhwi. “Xhreqoithe-yétyaî-yories qhae!” Xhnoet xhwaôptu pùnwewe kháto-iyòlkha-xing tlhintri-yèlwil Xhaûrlro-yan koaqing jés koaqing tqartqerqta-yèjhyi.
“Please come back so you can finish your story for your own benefit!” called back, chanted Alixhlìnye after him, but the others were joined to themselves in the chorus. “Tell the story, please, that’s correct!” However, the Squirrel Mouse merely shook his head on purpose, as he walked a little faster.
“Khènwe khènwe’ ei xhmér suju kú-xing,” lwàwa paje-jhyèlta Jàntethul ke se sas lwantukhot-empai-yòntet aêng kú-xing-epyer pìmlo porta-yùpwar Khlèrlpu-yan xhwuníxithe paje-tienamat-èxhyeu tsena xhmir seqaîngta’ “Aî-jana-khùko-xing kùlta’ ás thàrumat fhrie-yùpwar tú-yan-epyer qoe tlhefhurinwi-yòntet khleikha-xhènkhe wthaijhelónge-yinwi-yòntet thòkhwa jaqorpong-ìnwi jai-Pexhruît-ejikh texhe-yan-ing!”
“What a disappointment ‘twas that he wouldn’t stay,” sighed, saying the Cœlacanth, as soon as he was quite invisible and seen for the last time, and an Arachnocrab matriarch used the opportunity for saying to her daughter, “Oh my dearest female descendant, be it that you set out to learn a lesson, in order for you to control your temperment, engage in sophrosyne, and be pious unto the honored Alien Lords!”
“Qyakhréyipe jakhna-fhalesi-yòntett tnangpur-ùpwar xhér-Ámii pú-yan-ing” paje-fhaplìnamat Khlèrlpu fhrùtim wthùpta’, “Eiqhor-xhwaôptu kìnu xhroe poe tsoqhílaqa xhroa putsaru-yoapa-yàxhwa tepo-xhrejor pú-yant plorkho-yeîlwai tlhintri-yèlwil tangim-eîlwai.”
“I shall grip both my words and my tongue, my lady Mamà,” chanted the small Arachnocrab as she bowed, “And I shall only snap my claws against the enemies of dear us, and they are sharks without patience and orcs.”
“Fhórèsya’ ei-xhrejor pú Twàtsa khmaô lwar pú-qi-xing-e-sa tseu!” paje-xhàfhepel Alixhlìnye kus jáxe tangpà-yejikhh khnón-e-xhrejor. “Khàntemet khniletlheqhe-yampein-ìnthei Xhaurlro-yùpwar xhàxotha kae kexhe-yan-ing!”
“I wish I, for one, had Struggles, ah! nigh hand me, I know!” chanted Alixhlìnye aloud, addressing nobody in general. “She would soon go back, fetching the Squirrel Mouse imperial servant!”
“Xhnoet xhyús Twàtsa pejor khwènurt khmaltas-èqras xhyér-ùlkha-xing kúl pfhu pú?” paje-yeiléja Jàntethul.
“And who is Struggles, as I may venture and ask such a question?” chanted the Cœlacanth.
Tàpli khaômam tlhir Alixhlìnye xuxurfhre-yoakhwen-otyùs-ejett teiwa-fhinífhye-yòlkha kexh-ing. “Khnata-pfhaulefhil-òjhwo fhenísya Twatsa-yòjhwo. Eiqhor-xhmójeûjeu kúl tungèjheqhe xhmúxhi-yòntet xhaurlro-yòntet tsistetsi-yòntet fhtóni kexhe-yan-ing pui!
Alixhlìnye was eager to reply, because she was eternally prepared to discuss her pet. “Struggles is our kittie cat. And she is such an elegant one, a catcher of mice and squirrel mice and feathered mice and kangaroo bilge rats, in such a perfumed away!
Xhnoet pajè-khwipa khwìpa fharkh pú tiikhwisqa-yèfhto xhelefhóyai jhwóri-yolkha-yòntet àtsaqi tú-xhli! Lwét-àmpein-ìkhwi peîmpim fheil ojoxáxei-yupwar-iîlii kexhe-yan-ing ke-yaloi-sas khmampè-tsatlhu kexh-ing!”
And, how I wish, Ah! you could humble see her, persuing both archæopteryces and birds! Good! She will catch a birdling or a fishling as soon as she looks at them!”
Wthèmlamat fhiilrai-yùpwar qlaû pfhu qhirtsu-yuqeî-xing xhlir pyápepel pi xing. Jhàlri xhthí-yùnwung qthòrjha tlhir qlús syaqhasyha-yutya-yaongi-yòntet fhín.
This speech made a remarkable kerfuffle among the group. Some of the archæopteryces and flying fishes hurried to scurry and suddenly hurry up.
Khwùnaqhi xhnir lyá Tílexe qyìxing xekhya-jhwetlhim-oâqen thii-yèmpai khmafhàxhru paje-khmúta, “Ólakh per xhekhmufhayétyai-yoâqet potyim-atsèr-axúng jana-yíjurs-ùpwar xhlir fhtá wthékh-aloi!”
One old Squid Bird began swathing himself very carefully, muttering, saying, “Verily verily I must be going home, since the æther of the night is not suitable for my throat!”
Eiqhor àngikher éjar ei-xhrejor Xhwikhùlya-xing teiwa-xàmlim tlhemòn-epakh xhmir teiwa-fhínefha xhùtqu, “Lrapor-étyai jónga-janà-pfhés ptìlyo! Tsòsyiin ei qhòtsi xastana-yùpwar khiemoi-yèxhyeu tú-yan!”
And an Ice Piranha called out, saying in a trembling voice to his filial offspring, “Go away, my young and dear egglings! ‘Tis timely for you to go to bed for sleep!”
Jhèxhyu jomfhè-yejen kú-xuxhwi xekhyà-xhthii xhthii-yèpyer sukhpi-yìnthei tlhewar-èxhyeu’ Alixhlìnye ser.
Because of various apologies, they all were moving themselves away, and, by chance, Alixhlìnye was soon a leftover, being alone.
“Khmarnietù-yaxúng Twatsa-yètyikhh khlún se xhwé pú-xhni-xing” kexh-ing paje-sixè-xhutse tónga tlhìntril sae. “P-opaingaja khnerì-yejikh kexhe-xhrejor-ing poa-yèmlen khnón-epyer qlùkiki paje-jhwewèryat pú pfhaûlefhil fhenísya khwósu qir Fhteijoir-ùxhwi Xùlaxhant Pá-yàxhmikh kexh-ing.
“I, for one, wish not to have begun mentioning Struggles,” she chanted to herself in a melancholy musical tone. “No persons seem to like her down here, and I am certain, beleiving that she is the best kittie cat in all the Dreamtime, the Land of Story.
Xhnéyemai janà-Twatsa tèlitikh! Pajè-fhalës pú fhisqa-yájhe-iyaipoi-tingpenìngpent tú-xhrejor-ing ó poa!” Xhnoet pé-yatser ojuxujoxíjur-ùngpu khmepóker xhnir Swakaîxhrini’ Alixhlìnye jhenujóxò-yejet xhele tlhir qeîn tyornot-èthya xhnir xhlàpa sìxhwei.
Oh my beloved, dear Struggles! I wonder whether, perhaps, I am fated to see you at any time!” And at this time, little Princess Alixhlìnye began to cry again, because she was sad to be alone, as lonely as a hapax legomenon.
Eiqhor-íjuyìnthei’ òkeu xhwòniko stèngu pwànkha pwànkha qlaol-ùtya kexh-ing-epyer qlárs fhlèka fhaô xhele paje tlhir xhmeûxujor xharnyàxhmoir Xhaurlro-xing-òntet okhefhàkamat thúyim qoe pwaô pwèxhmat kú-xhrejor-ing koxha-yan-ing.
Soon she heard, beginning to perceive tracks, foot steps, pitter patting far away, and she was eager to look up, hoping that the Squirrel Mouse was changing his mind and returning in order to finish his story.
Hurray! Chapter Three is done!Some thoughts on Chapter Three:
This particular chapter offers several challenges for the translator. For instance, Lewis Carroll tosses out lots of puns: There’s dry as in not wet/boring. There’s the mouse’s tail and the mouse’s tale. And there’s not a knot. And a tail can knot and bend. One had to choose different puns or somehow conceptualize them.
There’s also a rather long digression concerning William the Conqueror. The digression has to be boring of “dry,” or whatever the pun for “dry” ends up being. If one has to change William the Conqueror into a different historical figure, that also means changing all the other names.
For me, the greatest problem was translating the tail or tale. Here we have a story that not only exists in Alice’s own mind, but also foreshadows the mad trial at the end of the book. So, be sure to know how the judicial system for your culture works and what words are appropriate. I’m afraid that the Land of Story doesn’t really have a judicial system, since the priests and Lords seem to perform this function. However, they do have some sort of ritual justice song, which is what’s being parodied in the poem.
Does your land have thimbles? Comfits? What about Dodos? The Dodo is an inherently comical looking birds.
I was fortunate in that Babel does happen to have a number of useful words for this section. There’s a word meaning “to laugh at an inappropriate time,” a word for “to be dry or abstract,” a word for “to be in the middle, be in medias res,” and “to be curvy, to tie knots.” These aren’t the exact same puns that Lewis Carroll made, but they will have to serve.
Chapter Four doesn’t seem to have any poems. The challenge for this chapter is that it seems a bit longer. So, this is going to be an endurance race.
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