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Junto a tu corazón (1942)

Close to Your Heart
lyrics by José María Contursi
music by Enrique Francini & Héctor Stamponi

What a horrible night I’ve had!
Everything in my room is cold.
I owe it all to you, my love:
despair and weariness.

I gave my whole life up to you
and this affection of mine—
a wounded bird that sought a warm nest
close to your heart.

Today as before
my poor eyes are left with no light,
and on my sleepless nights you alone are there
mocking my sorrow.

Today as before
I will go back to being alone…
you caused me so much pain
when, forgetting my love, you left.

Today as before
I will be wrapped in shadows once again,
and among these shadows I too shall become a shadow,
the better to remember you.

Today as before
today as before, I love you…
I will drag myself down a thousand roads
and you will live on inside of me.

Orquesta Carlos Di Sarli, singer Alberto Podestá

Orquesta José Garcia, singer Alfredo Rojas

(Spanish original after the jump)

Junto a tu corazón

¡Que noche horrible para mí!
Todo en mi cuarto es frío.
Te debo todo, amor, a ti:
desolación y hastío.

Mi vida entera te la di
y este cariño mío—
pichón herido que buscó nido y calor
junto a tu corazón.

Hoy como ayer
mis pobres ojos han quedado sin luz,
y en mis desvelos solamente estás tú
como una burla a mi dolor.

Hoy como ayer
vuelvo a quedar tan solo…
fue tanto el daño que me hiciste
cuando olvidando mi querer te fuiste.

Hoy como ayer
envuelto en sombras otra vez quedaré,
y entre esas sombras una sombra seré
para acordarme más de ti…

Hoy como ayer,
hoy como ayer, te quiero…
me arrastraré por mil senderos
y seguirás viviendo en mí.

About Derrick Del Pilar

Born and raised in Chicago, I came to the tango while studying at the Universidad de Belgrano in Buenos Aires in 2006. In 2008 I earned my B.A. with majors in Creative Writing and Spanish & Portuguese from the University of Arizona, and in 2009 I earned an M.A. in Latin American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. My specialty is the history & literature of early 20th century Argentina.

Discussion

5 thoughts on “Junto a tu corazón (1942)

  1. Thanks for translating one of my favorites by Di Sarli with Podesta. I’m interested in hearing why you translated “ayer” to before, not yesterday. I know that’s part of the art of translation and it makes sense.

    Posted by jantango | 07.04.2011, 4:27 AM
    • You’re quite welcome—it’s one of my favorites as well.
      As far the translation goes, you are correct, I took it as part of my artistic license. Rather than using my own words, I will quote Vladimir Nabokov, a master prose stylist in both English & Russian. In the Foreword to the English edition of his book Invitation to a Beheading, he writes:

      The Russian original of this novel is entitled Priglashenie na kazn’. Notwithstanding the unpleasant duplication of the suffix, I would have suggested rendering it as Invitation to an Execution; but, on the other hand, Priglashenie na otsechenie golovï’ (“Invitation to a Decapitation”) was what I really would have said in my mother tongue, had I not been stopped by a similar stutter.

      Just like Nabokov, I felt the duplication of the last syllable in “Today as yesterday” sounded cumbersome and awkward (especially since the phrase is repeated so much in this tango), whereas “Hoy como ayer,” especially in a porteño accent, sounds quite musical and lovely. Among all the alternatives, I felt “Today as before” to be the best and most elegant English rendering of the phrase.

      Posted by poesiadegotan | 07.04.2011, 4:44 AM
  2. GRANDI!!!

    Posted by Vito | 06.12.2015, 1:12 AM
  3. just beautiful translation. thanks a lot

    Posted by yuchun ahn | 07.28.2015, 2:09 PM

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The sound files on this site are included for illustrative purposes only. Those wishing to obtain high quality versions for their personal collections should purchase commercially available copies. If you can't get to a record store in Buenos Aires, a great many tangos are available, song by song, from http://www.tangotunes.com/ and others can be found on iTunes (transfer quality varies widely). Many CDs are available through online retailers such as Michael Lavocah's superb http://milonga.co.uk/.

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