Saturday, March 5, 2011

A Rosinha dos Limões

A haunting and playful daydream of a fado on one of the genre's seemingly (some would say annoyingly) inexhaustible themes--unrequited love--A Rosinha dos Limões has always reminded me of childhood. This, for me, is comfort music.

The title literally translates to "Rosie of the Lemons," but when I was a teenager in a traditional Portuguese guitar group we used to jokingly call it "Rosie and the Lemons," thus seemingly transforming the song's eponymous protagonist from a lemon-selling peasant girl to the lead vocalist of an arena rock band. I got in the habit of calling the song by its wrong name, and still catch myself doing so from time to time.

It's been in my head lately, so I thought I'd share.

This is the original recording by Max. Below the video I've copied the lyrics in Portuguese and then attempted an English translation, which doesn't quite do justice to the clever simplicity of Max's lyrics. There's almost no attempt at proper versification, and only the slightest hint at puns subtly analogizing the coquettish Rosie with the Virgin Mary. Well, that's how I read them anyway.

I'm no translator.


“Rosie and of the Lemons”


2 comments:

MamboPoet said...

Did you know about this?! http://caderno.josesaramago.org/

It felt like a Cosmic smile when I found it!

BJG. said...

Thanks for sharing!