Saturday, August 7, 2010

Elene X (completed)

Here is the full translation of part ten. I have reorganized the posts on the full translation of Elene in order to accommodate the full number of text divisions in the poem. I'm really happy with how the translation is coming now that work upon it is proceeding steadily.


Then from that very spot a vapor arose,
such a smoke beneath the heavens.
There was lifted the man’s breast-heart.
With both hands raised high, he clapped, blessed and law-wise.
Judas spoke, astute in thought: “Now I have perceived
in my obstinate mind that you are truly the Healer of Middle-earth.
Let there be, God of Powers sitting in majesty, praises without end
that you have revealed to me through your glory,
so miserable and sin-wrought, the mysteries of fate. (802-12)

“Now I wish to ask you, Child of God, Joy-Giver to Armies,
now that I know that you were revealed and conceived
the Majesty of all Kings, to be mindful of my faults no more,
O Creator, which I have done no few times against you.
Allow me, God of Might, to abide amid some portion of the blessed
among the reckoned number of your kingdom,
in their bright city where my brother is honored in glory,
Stephen, who held a pledge with you, and though he was killed by stoning,
he has the reward of warriors, the profit without cease.
There is revealed in books of scripture the wonders that he wrought.” (813-26)

Then joyful Judas dug into the earth, resolute in his courage,
after that Tree of Glory under the covering of turf,
so that at a depth of twenty feet he found the hidden treasure
deep below the abyss, hidden beneath its dark coffer.
He discovered there three crosses together in that sorrowful home,
buried in the dirt just as they had been covered over with earth
in days gone by, by a impious band, the kin of Judea.
They heaved up their malice against God's child—they never would have
unless they had heeded the lessons of Author of Crimes. (827-38)

Then was Judas’s heart-thoughts greatly elated,
his mind strengthened, his inner heart inspired by that holy tree,
after seeing that symbol holy beneath the earth.
He grasped with his hands the joy-beam of glory,
and heaved it up among the army from its earthen grave.
The strangers went forth on foot, nobles into the city. (839-45)

Then they set down the three victory-beams, apparent to see,
before the knee of Elene, warriors resolute and courageous.
The queen rejoiced in her heart’s mind and inquired of them
upon which of those crosses it was that the Wielder’s Son,
the holy Giver of Hope was hanged.
“So,we have heard it through blessed books, revealed by signs,
that two others suffered with him, and he was the third himself
upon the rood tree. All the heavens darkened at that cruel moment.
Say, if you know, upon which of these three the Prince of Angels,
suffered, the Guardian of Majesty.” (846-58)

Nor could Judas clearly reveal to her, for he knew not readily,
upon which of those Triumph-trees the Savior had been hanged,
the Victorious Child of God—not before he ordered them
to be set up in the middle of that famous city, trees amid the tumult,
and there waited until the King Almighty should unveil
a miracle before the multitude, about the Tree of Glory. (859-66)

They sat down, the counsel-deliberators triumph-famous,
and lifted up a song about the three crosses until the ninth hour,
when they felt a fresh joy, an encounter with glory.
Then there came no small crowd of people, a throng of men,
bringing a young man upon a bier recently without spirit,
having had traveled onwards. It was the ninth hour. (867-74a)

Then was Judas greatly elated in his mind. He ordered that they
set down the soulless man, the body deprived of life and unstirring,
upon the ground and, deep-thinking, heaved up two of those crosses,
the revealer of right spirit-wise, in his embrace over that fated house.
The body was still dead, just as before, a corpse fast upon its couch.
His limbs cooled, covered over by that cruel necessity. (874b-83a)

Then the third cross was raised, blessed. The corpse was waiting
until the beam of that Noble was areared over him, the Heaven-King’s,
the true Symbol of Victory. The man immediately arose,
equipped with his soul—together both together—body and soul.
There were praises sent high fair amid the folk.
The Father was worthied and the True Son of the Sovereign
was praised wordfully. Let glory and thanks be his
eternally without end from all of creation! (883b-93)

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