Not just two people, one café (intercalé avec l’espagnol y el francés)

For a little change of pace—un pequeño cambio de ritmo, un petit changement de rythme—instead of separating the English, Spanish and French, I and WordPress are displaying them line by line.

Not just one woman, one café

I know it when I see it - William Eaton, 2022There is a young waitress in a café, and when she is bored,

Hay una joven camarera en una cafetería, y cuando está aburrida,

Il y a une jeune serveuse dans un café, et quand elle s’ennuie,

When the work is slow or none of her friends or other young people are there,

cuando el trabajo es lento o ninguno de sus amigos u otros jóvenes están allí,

Quand le travail est lent ou qu’aucun de ses amis ou d’autres jeunes ne sont là,

She comes to the back where an older man sits reading and writing.

se acerca al fondo, donde un hombre mayor se sienta a leer y escribir.

Elle s’approche du fond où un homme âgé est assis en train de lire et d’écrire.

She can count on him to strike up a conversation,

Puede contar con él para entablar una conversación,

Elle peut compter sur lui pour entamer une conversation,

Or she’ll continue one they’d previously begun.

o ella continuará una que ya habían empezado.

Ou elle en poursuivra une qu’ils avaient déjà commencée.

Despite the difference in their ages, they have good conversations,

A pesar de la diferencia de edad, mantienen buenas conversaciones,

Malgré la différence d’âge, ils ont de bonnes conversations,

They laugh and give their opinions, and so forth.

se ríen y dan sus opiniones, etc.

Ils rient et donnent leur avis, et ainsi de suite.

When the young woman is bored she likes this man’s company,

Cuando la joven está aburrida le gusta la compañía de este hombre,

Quand la jeune femme s’ennuie, elle aime la compagnie de cet homme,

And when she’s not bored she scorns him.

y cuando no se aburre lo desprecia.

Et quand elle ne s’ennuie pas, elle le méprise.

And this is not just today, these two people, young and old, or rich or poor, famous or less,

Y esto no es sólo hoy, estas dos personas, joven y viejo, o rico o pobre, famoso o menos,

Et ce n’est pas seulement aujourd’hui, ces deux êtres, jeune et vieux, ou riche ou pauvre, célèbre ou moins célèbre,

Someone who doesn’t read much talking with or scorning an intellectual.

Alguien que no lee mucho hablando o despreciando a un intelectual.

Quelqu’un qui ne lit pas beaucoup et qui discute avec ou méprise un intellectuel.

This is not just a conversation or two in a café.

No se limita a una o dos conversaciones en un café.

Il ne s’agit pas seulement d’une conversation ou deux dans un café.

— Poem(s) and painting by William Eaton. The painting, “I know it when I see it,” was also—like the formatting of the poem above—a kind of experiment. I had just bought some bamboo paper I’d never used before and so was seeing how it responded to various colors. Wikipedia has been stating that the phrase “I know it when I see it” is a colloquial expression by which a speaker attempts to categorize an observable fact or event, although the category is subjective or lacks clearly defined parameters. The phrase has become one of the best-known phrases in the history of the United States Supreme Court. In 1964 Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, in explaining why some ostensibly erotic movie was protected speech that could not be censored, wrote:

I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description [“hard-core pornography”], and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that.

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