Sunday, July 08, 2007

Liviu Rebreanu: John - The Earth-Kissing Scene

Liviu Rebreanu (1885 - 1944).

The weather thawed. The winter, worn out as a grumpy old woman, was constantly scrooging, feeling the spring’s all the more delightful approach. The ragged snow-garment tore itself off, unveiling the black body of the fields.

John eagerly awaited these days. Now, master of all the lands, he coveted to see, caress and fondle them as faithful, loving mistresses. In vain had he paid visits to them as they were hidden away under the snowdrifts !

His love needed the estate’s heart. He desired to feel the clay underfoot, he wanted it to stick to his sandals, to devour its smell and his eyes to be filled with its ravishing color.

He came out all by himself, empty-handed, all dressed up in holiday-attire on a Monday. He climbed straight up to the Meadows, where the corn-field was at its highest and at its best, on the hill's ridge ... The closer he came, the clearer he saw how the place got undressed of the snow, like a beautiful young maiden, stripped of her shirt, revealing her naked, tempting body.

His soul was imbued with happiness. It was as if he was no longer longing for anything and as if there was nothing else in the whole wide world besides his happiness. The land was prostrating itself, in its entirety, before him, ... the land ... And it was all his, it was all his now ...

He stopped in the middle of the hill’s everglade. The black, sticky clay nailed and fastened his feet, making them heavy, drawing him like the arms of a passionate lover. His eyes laughed, his whole face was soaked in a warm, impassioned sweat. A wild lust filled him, urging him to embrace the humus, to tear it to pieces with his kisses. He stretched out his arms towards the straight, rough and moist furrows. The sour, fresh and fertile smell stirred up and kindled his blood.

He bent down, took a clod in his hands and broke it to pieces between his fingers, with a frightening pleasure. His hands remained smeared with the gluey clay as with a pair of mourning-gloves. He devoured the smell while rubbing his hands.

Then, slowly, piously, without realizing it, he bent on his knees, lowered his forehead and stuck his lips voluptuously on the moist ground. And, in this rash and hasty kiss, he felt a cold, staggering, bewildering thrill ...

He suddenly rose up ashamed and took a look around to find out if anyone saw him. His face, however, was smiling with an endless joy.


Rob said...

What is this?

Help a poor, ignorant American out here. :)

Did this guy with the unpronounceable name write it, or is it a tribute?

Rob said...

-like a beautiful young maiden, stripped of her shirt, revealing her naked, tempting body.-


Lvka said...

Did this guy with the unpronounceable name write it?

Yes, of course he did.

Lvka said...

the unpronounceable name

Ah, yes, the Romanian Tetragram. :D (If You already know the phonetic values of the vowels in Spanish, then this means that You are also aware of their Romanian readings).

Just in case, here's a little somethin' that might turn out to be helpful, given Your situation:

Americans are just plain old silly!
They write "A" but they read "ei".
They write "E" but they read "i".
They write "I" but they read "ai".
They write "O" but they read "ou".
They write "U" but they read "iu".

The bold syllables are the accentuated ones:

Li-viu Re-bre-a-nu.

Rob said...

So, here goes. Ihe name would be pronounced (Using English pronunciation cues)

Lee-vee-oo Ray-bray-ah-noo

Very musical name, actually.

Rob said...

You know, since you have me studying St. Justin, it would be cool if you did a study of some other Father (Chrysostom, perhaps) on your blog.

That way I could get in two at once!

Anonymous said...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now. Keep it up!
And according to this article, I totally agree with your opinion, but only this time! :)

stefania serban said...

Hello! Do you have the whole book traduced?

stefania serban said...

Hello! Do you have the whole book in English? I need it! Thank you!

Lucian said...

I highly doubt that Rebreanu has ever been translated into English. The translation is my own.