“Epigrams” at Asses of Parnassus

My translation of Mario dell’Arco’s poem “Epigrams” is up at Asses of Parnassus, the journal for all things epigrammatical. The poem is untitled in dell’Arco’s version, as it is part of a sequence of translations from the Roman poet Martial.


Are my epigrams any good? Who
knows? When I asked you, dear friend,
you rummaged through them
page by page, wrinkling up
your nose, shaking your head
‘no’. Now I know: they’re good.

Below is the Romanesco original, and Martial VI, 60 for those with Latin: 

So’ brutti o belli st’epigrammi? Boooh!
Oggi l’ho chiesto a te,
amico svisciolato, e scartabbelli
tra le paggine, e aggricci er naso, e
me fai segno de no.
Ho capito: so’ belli.

(Laudat, amat, cantat nostros mea Roma libellos,
meque sinus omnes, me manus omnis habet.
Ecce rubet quidam, pallet, stupet, oscitat, odit.
Hoc uolo: nunc nobis carmina nostra placent.)

Day Lasts Forever: Selected Poems of Mario dell’Arco will be published by World Poetry Books in 2024.

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