- Sep 2023
"Surrendering" by Ocean Vuong
He moved into United State when he was age of five. He first came to United State when he started kindergarten. Seven of them live in the apartment one bedroom and bathroom to share the whole. He learned ABC song and alphabet. He knows the ABC that he forgot the letter is M comes before N.
He went to the library since he was on the recess. He was in the library hiding from the bully. The bully just came in the library doing the slight frame and soft voice in front of the kid where he sit. He left the library, he walked to the middle of the schoolyard started calling him the pansy and fairy. He knows the American flag that he recognize on the microphone against the backdrop.
- My family immigrated to the U.S. from Vietnam in 1990, when I was two. We lived, all seven of us, in a one-bedroom apartment in Hartford, Connecticut, and I spent my first five years in America surrounded, inundated, by the Vietnamese language. When I entered kindergarten, I was, in a sense, immigrating all over again, except this time into English. Like any American child, I quickly learned my ABCs, thanks to the age-old melody (one I still sing rapidly to myself when I forget whether “M” comes before “N”). Within a few years, I had become fluent—but only in speech, not in the written word.
- Weeks earlier, I’d been in the library. It was where I would hide during recess. Otherwise, because of my slight frame and soft voice, the boys would call me “pansy” and “fairy” and pull my shorts around my ankles in the middle of the schoolyard. I sat on the floor beside a tape player. From a box of cassettes, I chose one labelled “Great American Speeches.” I picked it because of the illustration, a microphone against a backdrop of the American flag. I picked it because the American flag was one of the few symbols I recognized.
- May 2021
With some continued clever searching today along with some help from an expert in Elizabethan English, I've found an online version of Robert Copland's (poor) translation from the French, some notes, and a few resources for assisting in reading it for those who need the help.
- The art of memory, that otherwyse is called the Phenix A boke very behouefull and profytable to all professours of scyences. Grammaryens, rethoryciens dialectyke, legystes, phylosophres [and] theologiens. Petrus, Ravennas, ca. 1448-1508 or 9., Copland, Robert, fl. 1540-1547. [Imprynted at London: In Fletestrete at the sygne of the George by Wyllyam Myddylton, [ca. 1545]]
This is a free text transcription and will be easier to read than the original black-letter Elizabethan English version.
For those without the background in Elizabethan English, here are a few tips/hints:
For the more obscure/non-obvious words:
- Middle English Dictionary (online) from University of Michigan
- Project Gutenberg Middle English Dictionary
Finally, keep in mind that the letter "y" can often be a printer's substitution for the English thorn character) Þ, so you'll often see the abbreviations yͤ for "the" and yͭ as an abbreviation for "that".
Copland's original English, first printing of Ravenna can be accessed electronically through a paid Proquest account at most universities. It is listed as STC 24112 if you have access to a firewall-free site that lets you look at books on Early English Books Online (EEBO). A photocopy can be obtained through EEBO reprints on Amazon. Unless you've got some reasonable experience with Elizabethan black-latter typography, expect this version to be hard to read. It isn't annotated or modernized.
@ehcolston I'm curious to hear what the Wilson/Pena text looks like. I'm guessing it's not scholarly. I think Wilson is a recent college grad and is/was a publishing intern at a company in the LA Area. I'm not sure of Pena's background. I suspect it may be a version of the transcribed text I've linked with a modest updating of the middle English which they've self-published on Amazon.
Of course, given the multiple translations here, if anyone is aware of a more solid translation of the original Latin text into English, do let us know. The careful observer will notice that the Latin version is the longest, the French quite a bit shorter, and the English (Copland) incredibly short, so there appears to be some untranslated material in there somewhere.