Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Víra, Naděja, a Láska - Faith, Hope, and Charity

Here are two poems from Josef Al. Svoboda's 1893 book

Svoboda, Josef Al, Víra, Naděja, a Láska. Modlitební kniha pro vzdělané dívky katolické. [Faith, Hope, and Charity. Prayer Book for the Education of Catholic Girls.] (Královske Vinohrady: A. J. Cellerina a syna, 1893). 

Image result for shamrock
Věnování.

Zde svatá >víra<! Jež jste obtíženi,
a jimž tak těžko v klamech světa číst,
a jimž ne světlo na tmu děsnou mění,
Vám světím tento první světlý list.

>Naděje< sladká! Vy, jež trpělivě
nelásku snášíte zde štěstěny,
jei bespráví ponásleduje divě, -
Vám >naděje< ten lístek zelený.


A pro ty, jež jsou ze všech nejbídnější,
jímž přátelství a přízeň daly klam,
pro ty, jež nic už v světě nepotěší,
tu >lásku< - ten list zlatý ještě mám.

Vám, duše drahé, byste neklesaly
a oželely světa vratký vděk,
mé ruce > Víru! Naděj’! Lásku!< vpsaly
v ten, jejž vám světím, - svatý
trojlístek!
Dedication

Here holy “Faith”! To whom are heavy laden,
and to whom read the deceptions of the world,
and to whom have no light to illuminate the maddening darkness,
I observe [as] the first bright leaf.

Sweet “Hope”! You, who patiently
endures love’s fortune,
and is astonished by haunting injustices -
You[,] “Hope” [are] the green leaf.

And for those who are the most miserable of all,
which gave the illusion of friendship and patronage,
for those who are pleased by nothing in the world,
you[,] “Charity” still has the golden leaf.

You, dear soul, do not fall
and gladly give gratitude to the faltering world
 Written on my hands in one [are] “Faith! Hope! Charity!”
We observe you, O Holy
Trefoil!
Útěcha v modlitbě.

Když k Tobě, Bože, ruce spínám,
na lásku Tvou se rozpomínám,
mír bol od skrání odvěje, -
v modlitbě mi tak blaze je!

Když těcha mi a rada schází
tmu zoufalství když v cestu hází,
duše se k Tobě utíká,
v modlitbě síla veliká.

Když polepšit chci svoje žití,
když před vlastním se srdcem chvíti,
má slabá vůle začíná, -
v modlitbě spása jediná.

Vír člun kdy žití schvátit hrozí,
a pokušitelé když mnozí
na děs mi žiti promění, -
v modlitbě jen mé spasení.

I přátelé když opouští mě,
a nelásky jen mají símě,
když poslední mne zanedbá,
mne sílí  - vroucí modlitba.

Když radosti mé umírají,
a hvězdy blednou na mém ráji,
a každá naděj shasíná,
v ní radost moje jediná.

- 7 -

I na nejdražším hrobě matky,
v němž zavřen všechen cit můj sladký,
kde tisíc slz jsem prolila,
jen modlitba mne sílila.

A jest-li Bůh mi dá to štěstí
s blaženým klidem i smrt’ snésti,
ret svůj jí dát, by políbila,
pak dím: >Já si to vymodlila.<
Consolation in prayer.

When to you, Lord, [in] clasped hands,
Your love I remembered,
Peace blows away the sorrows from my temples, -
Prayer to me is so blessed!

When advice is missing from me
and when the journey throws darkness and despair [at me]
[My] soul to you flees,
[I find] great strength in prayer.

When I want to reclaim my life,
when[,] before my heart breaks,
when my weakness begins -
the only salvation [is] in prayer.

When life threatens to overturn my ship,
[and becomes as] a tempter to transform
my life to dread -
Prayer alone [is] my salvation.

Even if my friends should leave me,
And all my family fail to love me,
[Even] when the last neglects me,
I am strengthened - [by] fervent prayer.

When my joy is dying
and the stars fade in my paradise
and each of my new hopes are dashed,
in [prayer is found] my only joy.

- 7 -

And even on the grave of my dearest mother,
where all my sweet feelings ended,
upon which I shed thousands of tears,
My prayer only grew stronger.

And if God should grant me the good fortune
to endure death in blessed serenity,
Place your lips [on mine], and kiss [me], and say,
“I am praying for you.”
Here is the poetic version I came up with. It was very fun! 

Dedication

O holy “Faith”! Thou, laden with burdens,
and thou who buyest the world’s deceit,
thou lacking light to make doubt certain,
thou art there: the first bright leaf.


Sweet “Hope”! Those meek and ever patient,
enduring love’s inconstant fate,
confounded still by offense blatant,
“Hope”, this next leaf commemorates.   

For those most miserable of all,
that myth of friends and patrons give,
for those whom this world dost appall,
thou, “Charity,” canst still forgive.

O soul dearest! Thou shouldest not lapse,
to wavering world submit affinity.
“Faith! Hope! Charity!” art within thy grasp,
We see thee, Holy trefoiled
Trinity!
  
Consolation in Prayer.

Before thee, Lord, I clasp my hands,
rememb’ring thine true charity,
peace fills my brow and pain remands, -
O prayer, sweet familiarity!

When counsel fails or yet is lagging
and life brings nought but dark despair,
to thee, my soul flees fast, unflagging,
for I find strength in thee, O prayer.


When for redemption still I strive,
but when, unwittingly I err,
When weakness ‘gainst me yet contrives,
Salvation lies in thee, O prayer.

The torrid blasts, my ship capsizing,
become a tempter to transform
to desolation, still belying
thee, prayer, safety in my storm.

If all my sympathizers leave me,
and all my family’s love should fail,
Even when the last aggrieves me,
    Fervent prayer my heart avails.

When mirth and wonder liest dying,
and all the stars in heav’n should fade,
dissolving all my hopes. Complying
to thee, O prayer, my joy is staid.


And to the grave of mother dearest,
whereon my tender feelings ceased,
on which I shed a thousand tears, it
still my power did increase.

If God should grant the choicest blessing:
serenely suffering death - to me,  
then place your lips on mine, caressing,
and whisper, “I now pray for thee.”  




This is exactly why I love this work: you really never know what your next project will be. Not only was this new and interesting, but it also gave me a glimpse into the mindset of turn of the century Catholic pedagogy, which was certainly relevant to my own Czech ancestors! 

What interesting documents to you want translated?

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