Glíglico in English

This is a fairly free translation (what else could it be?) of an extract from Julio Cortázar’s Rayuela, chapter 68. Cortazár wrote this in Glíglico, a language he invented for the purpose. I did it to try to prove to a friend that it was possible – the reader can be the judge.


Source text

Apenas él le amalaba el noema, a ella se le agolpaba el clémiso y caían en hidromurias, en salvajes ambonios, en sustalos exasperantes. Cada vez que él procuraba relamar las incopelusas, se enredaba en un grimalo quejumbroso y tenía que envulsionarse de cara al nóvalo, sintiendo cómo poco a poco las arnillas se espejunaban, se iban apeltronando, reduplimiendo, hasta quedar tendido como el trimalciato de ergomanina al que se le han dejado caer unas filulas de cariconcia. Y sin embargo era apenas el principio, porque en un momento dado ella se tordulaba los hurgalios, consintiendo en que él aproximara suavemente sus orfelunios. Apenas se entreplumaban, algo como un ulucordio los encrestoriaba, los extrayuxtaba y paramovía, de pronto era el clinón, la esterfurosa convulcante de las mátricas, la jadehollante embocapluvia del orgunio, los esproemios del merpasmo en una sobrehumítica agopausa. ¡Evohé! ¡Evohé! Volposados en la cresta del murelio, se sentían balparamar, perlinos Y márulos. Temblaba el troe. se resolviraba en un profundo pínice, en niolamas de argutendidas gasas, en carinias casi crueles que los oropenaban hasta el límite de las gunfias.


My translation

He’d hardly got her titler bondled before her clymisse tightened and they collapsed in wartrous wallings, in wild andonbonons, in frustrated frelights. He tried and tried to slek her impubellae but kept getting all twisted up in a crantankous whimble and could only voltate himself to confront the newal, feeling how, little by little, the squipples splunkated, scrivened and redrippled, until they were stretched out like a thumanic thrilkiat into which a few fillips of phism have been dribbled. But this was only the start. Her glissyms started to trebulate, and she let him gently into her harlouns. They barely had time to quill before a kind of melochord crescated up over them, extricted and primoted them, and then, suddenly, came the cleniks, the streferous convulcation of two madrimos, the thrilkiat’s exhalborant wettenmoth, a marfent’s sprizzen in an inhumate outpuss. Ailluie! Ailluie! Soarfling the crest of the wellule, they felt themselves steapling, all limbid and marrogate. The toc still shook, desidrating into a deep slunk, surrounded by flamblings of extenguate gauze, by the almost cruel dearings which golpentrated them, right to the depths of their gumbles.


And no, it wasn’t easy !!

Buenos Aires, February 2007

3 thoughts on “Glíglico in English

  1. Since writing this I did in fact find an ‘official’ translation, in Gregorio Rabassa’s translation Hopscotch. All in all i think mine need not hang its head in shame by comparison.

  2. I actually prefer yours so much more. It may well be less accurate but it is so much more faithful to the spirit of the chapter. To me, as an English speaker, your translation rings more true and powerful.

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