A StoryOctober 24th, 2008 by justinb
The same thing always happened to him. When someone translated one of his poems into a foreign language (at least, a foreign language that he knew), his own verses sounded better than in the original. This is why it came as no surprise that he found the French version of his poem “Time and the bell” amazing, graceful and full of substance.
Two years later, an Italian translator who did not know Spanish translated that French version. Although he had never been a big supporter of indirect versions (keeping in mind however that this is how he had been introduced to Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and Confucius years before), he greatly enjoyed his poem” in italico modo.”
Another three years passed and an English translator who, like most English translators, did not know Spanish based his translation on the Italian version based on the French version. Despite being so far from the original, it was the most pleasing to the original Spanish speaking author. It just surprised him a bit (he actually attributed it to a printing error) that this new indirect version was entitled “Burnt Norton” and that the name of the alleged author was a T.S. Eliot. Nevertheless, he liked it so much that he decided to personally take on the task of translating it into Spanish.
in Cuentos Completos (Ed. Seix Barral 1994, p.497)
Mario Bendetti (born in Uruguay in 1920) is described as a poet who also writes stories and novels. His novel La tregua (1960), whose cinematic version was nominated for an Oscar in 1974, has been translated into 19 languages. He has published over 80 books and earned countless awards.