Thaïs — Taisa
(Intelekte amuza kanto)

Angla teksto kaj melodio: © 1923 Newman Levy
Esperanta versio © 1990-2001 Liland Brajant Ros'

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1-strofa, nur melodio | fona aranĝo
Mi lernis tiun ĉi kanton (angle) el Song Fest, eĉ antaŭ ol mi eklernis Esperanton, kaj mi tradukis ĝin antaŭ multaj jaroj, sed bedaŭrinde mi nur la unuan strofon parkeris kaj mi ne plu disponas pri la ceteraj strofoj de la traduko, do mi decidis refari ĝin. Song Fest laŭ mia memoro ne indikis, kiu verkis ĝin; la nomon de la verkinto (kaj la informon pri la kopirajto) mi ŝuldas al Mudcat Café

One time in Alexandria, in wicked Alexandria,
Where nights were wild with revelry and life was but a game,
There lived, so the report is, an adventuress and courtesan,
The pride of Alexandria, and Thaïs was her name.

Ho, iam Egiptie, en grandega urbo tie, en
La urb' Aleksandrio, konkurenca kun Sodom',
Loĝadis laŭraporte, ve, kaj lukris amosporte tre
Konata hetajrin': Taisa estis ŝia nom'.

Near by in peace and piety, avoiding all society,
There dwelt a band of holy men who'd built a refuge there,
And in the desert solitude they spurned all earthly folly to d-
Evote their lives to holy works, to fasting, and to prayer.

En paco kaj en pio abstinante de l' socio
Jen proksime monaĥaro loĝis kune en taĉment',
Kaj en dezert-izolo ili ŝvitis pri la rolo i-
Mitadi Kriston, fasti kaj preĝadi for de l' tent'

Now, one monk, whom I solely mention of this group of holy men,
Was known as Athanael — he was famous near and far.
At fasting bouts or prayer with him, none other could compare with him:
At grand and lofty praying, he could do the course in par.

One night, while resting heavily from wrestling with the devil ('e
Had gone to bed exhausted, while the sun was shining still),
He had a vision Freudian, and though he was annoyed, he an-
Alysed it in the well-known style of Doctors Jung and Brill.

He dreamt of Alexandria, of wicked Alexandria;
A crowd of men was cheering in a manner rather rude
At Thaïs, who was dancing there, and Athanael, glancing there,
Observed her do the shimmy in what artists call "the nude".

Said he, "This dream phantastical disturbs my thoughts monastical.
Some unsuppressed desire, I fear, has found my monkish cell.
I blushed up to the hat o' me to view that girl's anatomy;
I'll go to Alexandria, and save her soul from Hell."

So, pausing not to wonder where he'd put his winter underwear,
He quickly packed some evening clothes, a toothbrush, and a vest.
To guard against exposure, he threw in some woolen hosiery,
And bidding all the boys goodbye, he started on his quest.

The monk, though warned and fortified, was deeply shocked and mortified
To find, on his arrival, wild debauchery in sway.
While some lay in a stupor sent by booze of more than two percent,
The others were behaving in a most immoral way.

Said he to Thaïs, "Pardon me, although this job is hard on me,
I've got to put you wise to what I came down here to tell:
What's all this sousin' gettin' you? Cut out this pie-eyed retinue!
Let's hit the trail together, babe, and save your soul from Hell!"

Although this bold admonishment caused Thaïs some astonishment,
She coyly answered, "Say, you said a heapin' mouthful, beau!
This burg's a frost, I'm tellin' you; the brand o' hooch they're sellin' you
Ain't like the stuff we used to get, so let's pack up and go."

So, forth from Alexandria, from wicked Alexandria,
Across the desert sands they go beneath the blazing sun,
Till Thaïs, parched and sweltering, finds refuge in the sheltering
Confinement of a convent in the habit of a nun.

But, now, the monk is terrified to find his fears are verified:
His holy vows of chastity have cracked beneath the strain.
Like one who has a jag on, 'e cries out in pain and agony,
"I'd sell my soul to see her do the shimmy once again!"

Alas, his pleadings clamorous, though passionate and amorous,
Have come too late — the courtesan has danced her final dance.
Says he, "Now, there's a joke on me, for that there dame to croak on me!
I hadn't oughta passed her up, the time I had the chance!"