The title poem from a 1920 collection by New Zealand anarchist and poet Lola Ridge as envideoed by Catalan remix artist Josep Porcar.
I haven’t done a very good job of keeping up with Josep Porcar’s videopoetry output over the years, but he’s certainly Catalonia’s most active and visible proponent of the art, often combining (as here) his own Catalan translations with his audiovisual interpretations of classic and contemporary poems. His truly international focus should not be surprising; far from what outside observers of its independence movement might assume, Catalonia has much more of a crossroads culture than an insular or provincial one. (These days, it seems as if it’s mainly the declining empires, such as the UK and the US, which are bedeviled by insularity and xenophobia.) But enough of my editorializing. Go browse more of Josep’s work (or view the archive here).
Poe’s 1849 poem in a 2014 adaptation by Catalonian poet Josep Porcar with cinematography by Tomás Baltazar, a voiceover by Tom O’Bedlam and a Catalan translation by Txema Martínez Inglés in subtitles. The actor is Luis Carvalho.
Another Josep Porcar videopoem. If I understand the credits correctly, the filming is by Brenno Castro. Susanne Abbuehl contributed the entire soundtrack, music and voice. The Catalan translation in the subtitles is by Isabel Robles Gómez and Jaume Pérez Montaner. I particularly like the decision to have a female reader — it gives an already great poem a new dimension.
A four-year-old video montage by Josep Porcar, using Plath’s own reading, with subtitles in Catalan by Montserrat Abelló.
The Snow Man
One must have a mind of winter
To regard the frost and the boughs
Of the pine-trees crusted with snow;
And have been cold a long time
To behold the junipers shagged with ice,
The spruces rough in the distant glitter
Of the January sun; and not to think
Of any misery in the sound of the wind,
In the sound of a few leaves,
Which is the sound of the land
Full of the same wind
That is blowing in the same bare place
For the listener, who listens in the snow,
and, nothing himself, beholds
Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.
Here’s an English translation by Alexis Levitin:
It’s urgent — love.
It’s urgent — a boat upon the sea.
It’s urgent to destroy certain words,
hate, solitude, and cruelty,
It’s urgent to invent a joyfulness,
multiply kisses and cornfields,
discover roses and rivers
and glistening mornings — it’s urgent.
Silence and an impure light fall upon
our shoulders till they ache.
It’s urgent — love, it’s urgent
(from Forbidden Words)