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Sep 23, 2008, 6:29 PM

Post #1 of 6 (5616 views)


Why we need translations on this forum

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In another post Oscar2 talks about the romaticism in the Spanish language. I agree with him. There is no doubt about that fact. Spanish is really the language as Emperor Carlos V? said, "the language in which to talk to God."

But: We are learning Spanish. We don't know what the words mean. If we are not careful in our translations, how can we understand what is said, no matter how sophisticated or uncultivated the speaker.

And Oscar2, without meaning to do so, just gave us an illustration of how an incorrect translation can destroy the meaning, the feeling and the beauty of something said in Spanish and which we are trying to understand.

For example: >>> Te voy a cantar las palomas del cielo…. Touch’s home and is very moving in a deep understanding of Mexican cultural symbolism. If I were to say in English, “I’m going to sing the birds from the sky or heavens” – it just doesn’t have the same meaning and is frankly, romantically uninspiring.

As Oscar2 has pointed out this translation has no meaning and is uninspiring.

So, can Sr. Quevedo or Olivia or Esperanza or Georgia give us a better one?

My own translation is also uninspiring but is closer to the meaning of the Spanish author unless the continuation of this phrase clarifies its meaning.

Te voy a cantar[de?]las palomas del cielo....

I'm going to sing to you [about?] the birds of heaven....

As you can see I'm not familiar with the phrase and its continuation. But the I'm going to sing to you is very, very clear. Te voy a cantar.... So doesn't a suitor usually try to sing, write poetry, or at least hire mariachis for his loved one?


(This post was edited by jerezano on Sep 23, 2008, 6:34 PM)


Sep 23, 2008, 8:04 PM

Post #2 of 6 (5601 views)


Re: [jerezano] Why we need translations on this forum

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Hola Jerezano,

Te voy a cantar las palomas del cielo....

You bring up an excellent interpretive point. To me this implies that the person saying this is so committed to the one he loves, (or perhaps just flirting) or has intentions of having someone fall in love with him, this is sort of a grandiose statement someone can whisper in someone’s ear or an announced expression of yearning to make her his.

The word cantar, does not necessarily mean sing but to speak to the heavens in such a way that it will appear as a song too doves ears who will flock from the heavens to meet his loved one. I know, I know, it may sound a bit corny but the symbolism is very, very basic (edged in fantasy) of which Mexican speech sings to ones heart, much more so, than to ones mind.

Frankly Jerezano, I’m just a fledgling doing as others do while having fun, apparently some here are also finding expression and we certainly don’t want to discourage this, do we. I’m not trying to control anything, just going with the flow and having fun with those who enjoy same. I've also enjoyed your contributions for sometime now. Let's keep this communication inspiring, more interests can eventually make for improved speech.

(This post was edited by Oscar2 on Sep 23, 2008, 8:08 PM)

sergiogomez / Moderator

Sep 23, 2008, 9:49 PM

Post #3 of 6 (5589 views)


Re: [jerezano] Why we need translations on this forum

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Te voy a cantar de las palomas del cielo. . .I will sing to you as sweetly as the doves that fly in the heavens.

Just what popped into my head. As Oscar and Jerezano have pointed out, what counts isn't the literal meaning of the words, but what makes sense. I thought this sounded poetic, like a stereotypical Mexican suitor. (Pedro Infante, anyone?) These days, he's more likely to dedicate a song to you on the radio. He might hire mariachis if he's really serious and can afford it--oh, that's right, the neighbors object to that here NOB. Something about waking up to robust music at 5 or 6 in the morning...jaja. Or he'll sing to her, if he has a nice voice. I've had that honor before, and it does make a girl feel nice. My current novio is more of a raven than a dove when it comes to singing, but very sweet and well-intentioned. Traditions change...


Sep 27, 2008, 3:17 PM

Post #4 of 6 (5546 views)


Re: [sergiogomez] Why we need translations on this forum

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Or, how about: " I shall sing to you of heaven's doves."


Sep 28, 2008, 9:19 AM

Post #5 of 6 (5522 views)


Re: [Georgia] In my opinion

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Best translation so far.

Bonito domingo,



Sep 28, 2008, 10:49 AM

Post #6 of 6 (5516 views)


Re: [quevedo] In my opinion

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Wow. Gracias, Quevedo. Es un honor.
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