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287 The holesum fam’ly (La bbona famijja)
Translated by Peter Nicholas Dale


When ev’nen cums on an she sees me dad,
Gran leaves off winden wool, the poor ol’ dear,
N’ lites a charcoal, sets the table with good cheer
An we siddown t’ eat a coupla leaves a salad.

At times, fryen ourselves up sum’un ’a eat,
If ya hold it up agenst the lite an peer
Ya see rite thru it, like rays thru an ear:
Chuck in a few nuts, an dinner’s complete.

Then after that, while Dad, Clemmy an me
Sip wine f’ran hour or two at a leisurely pace,
She tidies the kitchen n’ puts away the cutlery.

An when the bottom a the winejug’s emptied its red,
With a widdle an a ‘Hail Mary full’a grace’
With the peace a the blest we toddle off ta bed.

13/4/2000
The sonnet is translated into "Strine", the dialect spoken in Australia down to the 1960s.

 


287 The wholesome family (Orthographically normalized version)
Translated by Peter Nicholas Dale


When evening comes on and she sees me dad,
Gran leaves off winden wool, the poor old dear,
And lights a charcoal, sets the table with good cheer
And we sit down to eat a couple of leaves of salad.

At times, frying ourselves up something to eat,
If you then hold it up against the light and peer,
You can see right through it, like rays through an ear:
Chuck in a few nuts, and dinner’s complete.

Then, after that, while Dad, Clemmy and me
Sip wine for an hour or two at a leisurely pace,
Gran tidies the kitchen and puts away the cutlery.

And when the bottom of the winejug’s emptied its red,
With a widdle and a ‘Hail Mary full of grace’,
With the peace a the blessed, we toddle off to bed.