On translation

(Av)

Сулейманил асарал гIурус мацIалде руссинарулев Эффенди Капиевасдасан гьесул тушбабаз гIемерал мацIал гьарулаан. Гьез Сулейманида абулаан: дур кучIдул Капиевас хвезе гьарулел ругин гIурус мацIалъ тIаде жубан, тIаса бахъун, гIемерал мухъал данде кколарилан.
— Щай, ХIабиб, дуца дир лъимал рухулел? — ан гьикъун буго Сулейманица Капиевасда.
— Дур кучIдул дур лъимал гуро, гьел мунго вуго, Сулейман-агъа, — абун буго Эффенди Капиевас.
— Гьедин батани, херав дир дагьабги хIурмат гьабизе ккелаан дуца.
— Дица, Сулейман, дур мухъазул рикIкIен цIуниялдаса жигар бахъула, дур кучIдузулъ мунго цIунизе, дур тIагъур, дур чарухъал, дур чагур, дур гьаракь цIунизе. Гьаб дида цебе бугеб чагъиралъул къадаралдаса гьалъул тIагIам цIунизе бокьула дие. Гьеб цIуничIони, гIайиб гьабе диде.
— Гьеб бищунго кIвар бугеб жо буго, — ян разилъун вуго Сулейман.

Effendi Kapiev (1), who translated Suleiman’s (2) works into Russian, was the target of many rumors thought up by his foes. They would tell Suleiman, “Kapiev is ruining your poems. In the Russian translation he adds things here, removes things there, and many lines do not match up.”
Suleiman went to Kapiev and asked, “Why, my friend, are you beating my children?”
“Your poems are not your children – they are you yourself, Suleiman-agha” (3) replied Kapiev.
“If that is so then you should show at least a little respect to your elder.”
“Suleiman, it’s not the number of lines that I must preserve in your poems, but your spirit. Your hat, your charuqs (4), your chagur (5), your voice. See this wine before us? I want to preserve its taste, not its quantity. If I fail to do this then you may criticize me.”
“Indeed, this is the most important thing,” agreed Suleiman.

1) Effendi Mansurovich Kapiev (1909-1944) – author, literature expert, publicist, poet and translator – wrote in Russian, Lak and Kumyk.
2) Suleiman Stal’sky (1869-1937) Lezgin folk poet-bard and one of the greatest Dagestani poets of the 20th century (even dubbed “the Homer of the 20th century” by Maxim Gorky). Composed in Lezgin and Azerbaijani.
3) a term of respect.
4) Traditional leather shoes (Avar: чарухъал) – these and a large karakul hat were Suleiman’s attributes, which he refused to change for a suit and regular shoes even when accepting an award in Moscow.
5) a stringed folk instrument  and another one of Suleiman Stal’sky’s attributes.


(Ru)

Эффенди Капиев был другом Сулеймана Стальского. Он же переводил его на русский язык. Эта дружба вызывала зависть мелких и никчемных людей. Они старались унизить Капиева в глазах прославленного поэта или даже оклеветать его. Они говорили Сулейману:
– Ты не умеешь читать по-русски, а мы знаем, что Эффенди Капиев, когда переводит, портит твои стихи. Где хочет, он добавляет, где хочет, сокращает, а многие строки переделывает по-своему.
Однажды во время неторопливой беседы Сулейман завел разговор.
– Друг, – сказал он, – я слышал, ты бьешь моих детей.
Эффенди сразу понял, о чем идет речь.
– Твои стихи – не дети твои, Сулейман. Они – это ты сам, Сулейман Стальский.
– В таком случае я, старик, заслуживаю еще большего уважения, чем дети.
– Но что для тебя важнее, Сулейман, количество строк в стихах или стиль и дух? Вот перед нами стоит вино. Если оно выдохнется, то его почти не убудет, но оно не будет уж тем вином, которое мы пьем и которым наслаждаемся. Дело не в количестве вина, но в его аромате, во вкусе и крепости.
– Ты прав, это важнее всего.

Effendi Kapiev was a friend of Suleiman Stal’sky, and the one who translated his works into Russian. This friendship made some small and insignificant people jealous. They tried to humiliate and even slander Effendi. They would tell Suleiman, “You can’t read Russian, but we know that Effendi is ruining your poems when he translates them. He adds things here, removes things there, and reworks many lines according to his whims.”
One day, during an unhurried discussion with Effendi, Suleiman broached the topic.
“My friend,” he said, “I heard that you’re beating my children.”
Effendi immediately understood, and replied:
“Your poems are not your children, Suleiman – they are you yourself.”
“If that is so, then as your elder I deserve even more respect than my children.”
“What is more important to you, Suleiman – the number of lines or their essence? See this wine before us. If it loses its taste, its quantity will remain the same, but it won’t be the same wine that we’re enjoying now. It’s not the quantity that matters but its aroma, its taste, its essence.”
“You’re right – this is the most important thing.”

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