Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Inferno of Dante (Pinsky Verse Translation): Response II

The Inferno of Dante: A New Verse Translation by Robert Pinsky, Bilingual Edition, Illustrated by Michael Mazur with Notes by Nicole Pinsky and Foreword by John Freccero. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1994, 1995 printing.

Let's run down a few more touchstones from Dante's Disco Inferno, shall we?

From Canto XIV (page 141): 

". . . All over the sand
Distended flakes of fire drifted from aloft
Slowly as mountain snow without a wind." 

Compare a snippet from the devilish 1969 Stooges song, "I Wanna Be Your Dog:"

"And now I'm ready to close my mind
And now I'm ready to feel your hand
And lose my heart on the burning sand
And now I want to be your dog . . ."
Dante Running from the Three Beasts by William Blake, 1820s
Tales of Brave Ulysses (Odysseus).

Canto XXVI (page 277):  

"You were not born to live as a mere brute does . . .

Turning our stern toward the morning light,
We made wings of our oars, in an insane
Flight . . ." 

Moonlight Mile

Canto XXIX (page 305):

"'. . . And already the moon
Is under our feet: the time we are allowed
Has now grown short, and more is to be seen

Than you see here. . .'"

Down in the Bottom / The Wishing Well.

Canto XXXII (page 341):

"It is not jokingly that one begins
To describe the bottom of the universe --
Not a task suited for a tongue that whines

Mamma and Dadda . . ."*

The Cooling Board.

Canto XXXII (page 347):

"'. . . down where the sinners are put
To cool . . .'"

The Stooges, "Real Cool Time" (1969):

"We will have a real cool time tonight,
Tonight . . ."

*"Mamma o babbo" in the original Italian (page 340). Bottom Line: the influence of Dante on fellow artists during the past 700 years is demonstrably effervescent and plentiful.  

Today's Rune: The Mystery Rune.


Charles Gramlich said...

Weirdly, I just saw something yesterday about "men who live as dogs."

the walking man said...

This resonates with me in the slums..."Not a task suited for a tongue that whines"