October 13, 2009

Carmina Burana

If you haven't already figured out, I tend to be extremely bad/slow at catching up with things; terribly so, in fact.
So is it any wonder that I've only grown to completely understand and relish the meaning behind the song recently?

I first got to know about this song through some car commercial some lightyears ago.
I loved how that song got my pulse racing for some reason; and gave me an adrenaline rush.
But all those times, I never knew the title of the song, nor the composer.

Then 11 years ago, I heard that song again.
It was used for one of our (ok, not mine, technically,) ballet concert recitals; Min Li's group.
I fell in love with the song again when I saw the dancers dancing to that song (thanks to dad, I still have it on tape ^^), and at one point, even tried ashamedly to learn the steps from watching the taped video.
And failed, of course. >_<
But I was only 10 then, and had little to no 'computer time', so yet again, I never got to look it up.

It was only a few years ago that I learnt the name and composer of the song, and downloaded it.
But I still had no clue of the meaning.
Until very early this morning.

I was in the 'Classical' mood, listening to S.E.N.S' songs (a Japanese new age instrumental group formed in 1988, and stands for 'Sound, Earth, Nature, and Spirit'), and decided to look up for the translations online.

Here's the lyrics - and translation, in case you too, like me, never knew the meaning of this piece of work before this. 


1. O Fortuna (Chorus) (O Fortune)

O Fortuna
O Fortune,
velut luna
like the moon
statu variabilis,
you are changeable,
semper crescis
ever waxing
aut decrescis;
and waning;
vita detestabilis
hateful life
nunc obdurat
first oppresses
et tunc curat
and then soothes
ludo mentis aciem,
as fancy takes it;
and power
dissolvit ut glaciem.
it melts them like ice.
Sors immanis
Fate - monstrous
et inanis,
and empty,
rota tu volubilis,
you whirling wheel,
status malus,
you are malevolent,
vana salus
well-being is vain
semper dissolubilis,
and always fades to nothing,
et velata
and veiled
michi quoque niteris;
you plague me too;
nunc per ludum
now through the game
dorsum nudum
I bring my bare back
fero tui sceleris.
to your villainy.
Sors salutis
Fate is against me
et virtutis
in health
michi nunc contraria,
and virtue,
est affectus
driven on
et defectus
and weighted down,
semper in angaria.
always enslaved.
Hac in hora
So at this hour
sine mora
without delay
corde pulsum tangite;
pluck the vibrating strings;
quod per sortem
since Fate
sternit fortem,
strikes down the strong man,
mecum omnes plangite!
 everyone weep with me!

2. Fortune plango vulnera (I bemoan the wounds of Fortune)

Fortune plango vulnera
I bemoan the wounds of Fortune
stillantibus ocellis
with weeping eyes,
quod sua michi munera
for the gifts she made me
subtrahit rebellis.
she perversely takes away.
Verum est, quod legitur,
 It is written in truth,
fronte capillata,
that she has a fine head of hair,
sed plerumque sequitur
but, when it comes to seizing an opportunity
Occasio calvata.
she is bald.
In Fortune solio
On Fortune's throne
sederam elatus,
I used to sit raised up,
prosperitatis vario
crowned with
flore coronatus;
the many-coloured flowers of prosperity;
quicquid enim florui
though I may have flourished
felix et beatus,
happy and blessed,
nunc a summo corrui
now I fall from the peak
gloria privatus.
deprived of glory.
Fortune rota volvitur:
The wheel of Fortune turns;
descendo minoratus;
I go down, demeaned;
alter in altum tollitur;
another is raised up;
nimis exaltatus
far too high up
rex sedet in vertice
sits the king at the summit -
caveat ruinam!
let him fear ruin!
nam sub axe legimus
for under the axis is written
Hecubam reginam.
Queen Hecuba.

Now that was deep.

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