magique cette foutue toile de misère

English translation: (burst through) this damned/darn woeful scene

16:00 Feb 19, 2011
French to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Poetry & Literature / Novel
French term or phrase: magique cette foutue toile de misère
Boats on the sea during a hurricane.

Contexte:

"Paul fouilla l'horizon en essayant d'apercevoir le bateau dont le SOS se perdaient sans cesse sur les vagues...Il cherchait et pria longtemps, les mains posées sur les cartons qui le dérangeaient dans sa quête, les yeux balayant fiévreusement la surface de terreur visible, le vide envahissant par à coups sa poitrine torumentée qui n'en finissait de se tordre dans un movement régulier, transformant le corps de cet homme en un moulin pris de tournis losque soudain, scrutant encore, il vit deux braises rouges crever dans un sursuat violent, **magique cette foutue toile de misère** qu'elles déchirèrent superbement."

Merci Beaucoup,

Barbara
Barbara Cochran, MFA
United States
Local time: 09:08
English translation:(burst through) this damned/darn woeful scene
Explanation:
I agree with Polyglot's parsing.
Selected response from:

Euqinimod (X)
Local time: 15:08
Grading comment
Thank you very, very much. Yours matches the tone of the rest of my translated context.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
4What an exhibition (OR display) this magnificently fire torn and damned portrait of misery is.
Lara Barnett
4(burst through) this damned/darn woeful scene
Euqinimod (X)
4(...magic), this damned canvas of misery
Yvonne Gallagher
4magic that damned canvass of misery
reeny


Discussion entries: 5





  

Answers


15 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
magic that damned canvass of misery


Explanation:
not too hot on poetry, but that's the way I see it

reeny
Local time: 15:08
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Jim Tucker (X): spelled with "ss" it's a different word
43 mins

neutral  Martin Cassell: this is word-for-word-ish from the source phrase as quoted, which was however not correctly analysed
58 mins
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4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
(...magic), this damned canvas of misery


Explanation:
magic definitely has comma after it, although for a while confess to thinking of magique as "magic up"(v.)=making something appear...

...torn or ripped apart by the two "braises rouges" =elles which he (Paul) sees burst open in a sudden violent, magic movement (or perhaps somersault)

By the way, the famous Rimbaud poem, "Le Bateau Ivre" has "braises" as the colour of the sky during a hurricane". Here are the lines:

Glaciers, soleils d'argent, flots nacreux, cieux de braises !
Échouages hideux au fond des golfes bruns
Où les serpents géants dévorés des punaises
Choient, des arbres tordus, avec de noirs parfums !





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Note added at 4 hrs (2011-02-19 20:15:42 GMT)
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I assume the "braises rouges" are distress flares from the boat or perhaps just the lights?

The use of distress flares indicates that there is grave and imminent danger to ... White flares are not distress flares. A hand held one can be used to ...
www.sailtrain.co.uk/seamanship/flares.htm - Cached - Similar


Yvonne Gallagher
Ireland
Local time: 14:08
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 24
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6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
(burst through) this damned/darn woeful scene


Explanation:
I agree with Polyglot's parsing.

Euqinimod (X)
Local time: 15:08
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in category: 16
Grading comment
Thank you very, very much. Yours matches the tone of the rest of my translated context.
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
What an exhibition (OR display) this magnificently fire torn and damned portrait of misery is.


Explanation:
"...un moulin pris de tournis. . . As he continued to scrutinize the scene, he saw two live embers suddenly flare up violently. What an exhibition(OR display) this magnificently fire torn and damned portrait of misery is".

This very distinct final image(of source term) comes at the end of a very, very long sentence (by English standards anyway). Therefore I don't think you can translate this phrase without considering how the rest of the context is to be translated as the praragraph/sentence would flow better in English if it were restructured. This is why I have broken text up into new sentences.
Turning this final image into a sentence of its own wouldn't hurt the focus and emphasis of the source term/ text anyway. It might just give the correct amount of emphasis that I think risks disappearing if the French style (of long sentences) were carried across to the English.

Another issue here is the use of magique. This could be a play on words for "feu magique" :
"Les "feux magiques" sont ces batonnets qui se consument en projetant des micro-étincelles (un genre de petit feu de bengal) et que l'on plante sur des gâteaux, omelettes norvégiennes, etc... "
http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=111006
OR
it could be a general expression for the haunting and ethereal image presented by the scene the character is watching.
EITHERWAY,
I don't think this can be literally translated as "magic" as the French idea would be lost in translation. Therefore it needs to be replaced with a relevant term to complete the picture.

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Note added at 2 hrs (2011-02-19 18:22:18 GMT)
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EXCLAMATION
Another possibility is to add an exclamation at the end to emphasise the beginning "What an exhibition....portrait of misery is!"

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Note added at 1 day5 hrs (2011-02-20 21:33:04 GMT)
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Sorry typo. Above note should have read Exlamation MARK !!!

Lara Barnett
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:08
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
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