5

Background:

Searching for songs as exercises of translation from Chinese, I came across kam-thung sim, the Hakka version of 感动天感动地. Unfortunately, there were no characters (well, except for those that are the mandarin original placed with Karaoke lighting over the video of the Hakka song, most inappropriate), so I commented on the video (Mick Gorro is my name there) and Va Vang replied, posting the following characters:

一開始𠊎偭到,
愛情本等就恁容易
所以𠊎冇真真想起
恁樣放落心去
結果𠊎[有]一斷心
[𠊎]看到汝搭撈佢
𠊎正識到原來愛情
毋系講愛就得矣

𠊎感動天感動地
做麽感動不到汝
明明愛情就冇結果
做麽呃死死等到老
𠊎感動天感動地
做麽感動不到汝
希望自家想作一下
結果𠊎騙徠儕

As you can see, I added a couple to match the song. I couldn't really understand this, so I understood what I could and let this go, up till I remembered about it after being added to the Facebook Hakka:Verse group. I posted on it, and we came to the following spelling:

一開始涯緬著
愛情本等就恁容易
所以涯無真真想起
恁樣放落心去
結果涯有一斷心
涯看著汝佮倒佢
涯正識著原來愛情
毋系講愛就得矣

涯感動天感動地
做麽感動毋著汝
明明愛情就無結果
做麽死死等到老
涯感動天感動地
做麽感動毋著汝
希望自家曉做一下
結時涯騙單儕

涯所毋愛翻?去想汝
試著雅?毋愛翻來同去
???單儕在阿里
每日??偏偏?毋著汝

Forget the last part for the moment. This translates to:

At the start I thought
Love is originally very easy
So I don't really remember
How [I] put [you] in [my] heart
As a result I have a broken heart
[And] I see you going back to him
I've just found out love
Is not like just saying I love you is fine

I move heaven and move earth,
Why can I not move you?
It's clear that love [will] have no result
Why (si-si ten to lo = sixintadi perhaps?)
I move heaven and move earth,
Why can I not move you?
Hoping I would do something
I ended up deceiving myself

I'm not too sure about the translation of 结时 as "in the end" (whence "I ended up deceiving"), and above all 死死等到老 is most uncertain, but this is all just for completeness. The question here is about the extra bit. Va Vang completely failed to provide characters, so I tried transcribing the sounds, getting:

Ngai sho m ai fan sai hit shiong ngi
Shi dao nga shi m oi fan lai tong hi
Am ting e kan sat s toi a li
Mui nyit mei shi pien pien vs tou n do ngi

Guessing that:

  1. hit was actually hi;
  2. sho and shiong were phonetic variants of so and siong;
  3. ai was supposed to be oi;
  4. shi dao was chi to, as o->ao or au is a common variation and t->d is an effect of singing, and shi might have been chi with me not hearing the initial plosive onset;
  5. sat s toi was actually sa tshoi, with the tsh being misheard as t s t, and being the initial of choi, at, and sa being the end of tan-sa, alone;
  6. vs tou n do ngi was a bad mishearing of ng co ng to nyi.

I reached the following characters:

涯所毋愛翻?去想汝
試著雅?毋愛翻來同去
???單儕在阿里
每日??偏偏(?毋著汝)->毋做毋到汝

I won't provide a translation as holes are abundant. I just observe that 涯=我,毋=不,爱=要,翻=再次,汝=你,试着=试到,单侪=孤单,阿里=这里,毋做毋到汝 is a very wild and potentially meaningless guess which would mean 不做不到你。

Question:

With all that, the question is the following: what does that part say? How do I spell it in characters? How do I pronounce it?

Any corrections on the translation of the rest is very welcome, and a full transliteration with tones is worth a +1 :).

Little extra: Here's the facebook post:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/158381100868371?view=permalink&id=854070744632733

  • Couple of typos: in kamthung m to nyi, m is misspelt, should be the character translated to bù in the observations below; in the line himong chika hiau co jit ha the hiau is written as xiăng, clearly wrong, should be xiăode de xiăo. Will edit after lunch. – MickG Jan 6 '15 at 12:03
  • Note: someone on fb suggested mien should be spelt with the heart radical rather than the thread radical (i.e. with 愐 rather than 緬). Just for completeness I leave this comment, letting any who wants comment on this. I reported the issue in Write Hakka too: m.facebook.com/groups/…. – MickG Jan 6 '15 at 12:56
  • We concluded using the heart radical is more common and therefore better than using the thread one. – MickG Jan 17 '15 at 17:31
  • Just a personal tip, don't practice Chinese in Hakka, do it in Mandarin. It is because Mandarin speak the same they write, which is the universally recognized writing version called 白話文. – Daniel Cheung Aug 8 '15 at 8:56
  • Good advice. Then again, when I meet with a Hakka song, I feel compelled to try cracking it :). And searching for songs on Youtube almost inevitably leads to songs in other dialects (Cantonese, Min Nan, Hakka, even Teochew once). – MickG Aug 8 '15 at 9:10
1

結時涯騙單儕 mean 都是我騙自己 in Chinese. It can be translated like "just deceiving myself". 結時 is just Hakka tone for speak out, not really a word in this song. You can translate the Chinese word that sentence in the YouTube video. That Chinese sentence can translate nearly But 做麽死死等到老 is correct, not 卻還死心塌地. 做麽死死等到老 means 就這麼死死等到老. It can be translated like "waiting you persist until the end"

That last part that Hakka pinyin is.. "老豆七嘎mu'ooei勾敻里 試懂呀西雅翻來同起 萬其一單色在阿里 每日惦惦敻刀里"

That song is sung like 粵語 (Cantonese) a little bit. Maybe it's different how they speak Hakka in different countries.

  • This doesn't really anwer the question which is about another bit of the song, the one corresponding to Mandarin "Yiwei ziji bu zai qu xiang ni ... Que hai xiangyao zhidao ni de xiaoxi". Useful info though. Consider editing your answer to include an answer to the question, i.e. how I should spell and understand the lyrics of the bit I mentioned before. – MickG Aug 21 '15 at 15:21
  • Is there any good reason not to be able to paste stuff into comments from mobile? I tried to paste the characters for the pinyin into the previous comment but no way, and even this comment didn't allow pasting... – MickG Aug 21 '15 at 15:27
  • 1
    how I should spell and understand the lyrics of the bit I mentioned before->it's difficult like that how could I speak English as my native language – Li-ting Aug 21 '15 at 15:51
  • To complete the comments above, the characters were "以为自己不再去想你…却还想要知道你的消息". – MickG Aug 21 '15 at 16:43
  • What does that part mean? – MickG Aug 23 '15 at 11:29
1

This has been an immense effort. I posted on Youtube, Hakka Verse (Facebook) and here, and no posting got me a complete answer. Va Vang (now vugh va, impossible to notify) provided the first characters for the part I reported for completeness. Then I posted on Hakka Verse, and we improved the spelling for that. Then I posted here, and after waiting for ages I got Li-ting's answer. Now I clearly cannot accept that answer since it doesn't fully answer me, as I am left with characters that make little sense to me, and even the admin of Hakka Verse can't make sense of them. What the answer says has helped me, in that:

  1. It confirmed (more or less) my interpretation of kiet-sii;
  2. It more or less confirmed my idea that si-si ten to lo is near to sixintadi in meaning, implying a persistent wait, which lasts till the singer gets old (to lo), though he objected to my translation of co-mai; I have to reject that objection on the basis of Hakka Verse experience;
  3. He confirmed some of my guesses for the characters of the part this question is all about.

Let me now update you about my experiments.

  1. Yesterday evening, looking for a way to crack the nga shi (which Li-ting spells 呀西, a way that makes no sense to me and seems just a phonetic approximation), I found 时 means "time" and is shi2 according to Minhakka's 客英大辞典. It is pretty strange that the same character is pronounced sii in kiet-sii first and shi after, but I have no better guess for this. I have to suppose 时 is a 多音字 and is pronounced shi for "time" and sii in kiet-sii, which basically means "in the end".
  2. I previously cracked the first line as 涯想毋愛翻再去想汝, "ngai siong m oi fan-cai hi siong nyi", keeping my guesses and adding that "siong" was misheard as "sho" because I didn't hear the final nasal, and that fan-cai was read fan-tsai.
  3. Yesterday evening I looked for ting or thing, to no avail; same for bam; so I resorted to guessing a mishearing was at play here, and looked for ban; well, van, because that's how they spell it at Minhakka; I found 万,换,湾, and maybe another possibly suitable van; then I looked for tin, and found that it means "to bear, to endure"; so I guessed that "ban tin" meant "enduring lots [of sufference]", and that the "e" was actually "ge", the possessive particle; this led me to "万tin个单侪在阿里", "I, enduring lots of sufference, alone here", linking to the last line; unfortunately, Minhakka has no char for "tin", and hakka.dict.edu.tw doesn't even have that tin; I am waiting for spelling suggestions.
  4. The last line I haven't yet tried guessing; well, we are left with that "mei shi", which I don't know how to interpret or spell, and which Li-ting doesn't even have in his chars.

Summing up, I have the following lyrics:

一開始涯緬著
愛情本等就恁容易
所以涯無真真想起
恁樣放落心去
結果涯有一斷心
涯看著汝佮倒佢
涯正識著原來愛情
毋系講愛就得矣

涯感動天感動地
做麽感動不著汝
明明愛情就無結果
做麽死死等到老
涯感動天感動地
做麽感動不著汝
希望自家想作一下
結時涯騙單儕

涯想毋愛翻再去想汝
試著雅時毋愛翻來同去
萬tin个單儕在阿里
每日??偏偏轉著汝

Jit khoi-si ngai mian to
Oi-chin pun ten chiu an jung-ji
So-ji ngai mo cin-cin siong-hi
An-nyong piong lok sim hi
Kiet-ko ngai jiu jit thon sim
Ngai khon to nyi kak-to ki
Ngai cang chi-to nyen-loi oi-chin
M he kong oi chiu tet nyi

Ngai kam-thung thien kam-thung thi
Co-mai kam-thung m to nyi
Min-min oi-chin chiu mo kiet-ko
Co-mai si-si si ten to lo
Ngai kam-thung thien kam-thung thi
Co-mai kam-thung m to nyi
Hi-mong chi-ka hiau co jit-ha
Kiet-sii ngai phien tan-sa

Ngai siong m oi fan-cai hi siong ngi
Chi-to nga si m oi fan lai thung-hi
Ban tin kai* tan-sa choi a-li *Pronounced "ke"
Mui nyit mei si phian-phian con to nyi

At the start I thought
Love when it starts is very easy
So I don't really remember
How [I] put [you] in [my] heart
As a result I have a broken heart
[And] I see you going back to him
I've just found out love
Is not like just saying I love you is fine

I move heaven and move earth,
Why can I not move you?
It's clear that love [will] have no result
Why do I wait so persistently till I get old?
I move heaven and move earth,
Why can I not move you?
Hoping I would do something
I ended up deceiving myself

I don't want to love you again
I know I don't want to spend my time with you again
Here alone, suffering a lot,
Every day (mei shi) I constantly come back to you

I am awaiting confirmation on my guesses for lines 2-3 of the hard bit, and am not sure about the last line, besides the hole. The idea of might be a good one: "每日mei shi惦惦转着你", Every day I remember of you or think of you, though there are too many "verbal prepositions", I mean, 转 and 着 can both serve the function of result complements (ex "翻译转" = "翻译成" and "想着你" = "想到你“), but both together seem far-fetched. A way to fix the 时 controversy is to spell that 结事, which Minhakka would read kiet-sii, and interpret it as typically Hakka, and a "tone" word, in Li-ting's terminology.

Update

I notified the fb group of this answer, and Dylan Whs commented suggesting:

反正:横正;横掂 in any case

Vang cin ~ ban tin

横正涯单儕在那位

每日每時點點想到汝

This certainly solved the mysterious bam ting e, getting bam ting to vang-cin, similar to bang-tin, and e to ngai, transformed to nge in singing, the ng of which seemed to stick to the tin making it ting. The substitiution of choi a-li with choi a-bui I would reject since it doesn't match what I hear. "mui shi" for "mei shi" is also some problem. But then, responding to my comment posing these problems, he said:

Just guesses ;')

So I will go back to my choi a-li and keep my doubts on "mei shi" alive but adopt that as a temporary solution while waiting for a better option. With that, the problematic part became:

涯想毋愛翻再去想汝
試著雅時毋愛翻來同去
横正涯單儕在阿里
每日每時偏偏想著汝

Ngai siong m oi fan-cai hi siong ngi
Chi-to nga si m oi fan lai thung-hi
Vang-cin ngai* tan-sa choi a-li Pronounced "ban-tin nge"
Mui nyit mui si
phian-phian con to nyi *"Mei shi" waiting for better alternative

I think I won't think of you anymore
I know I won't use my time to go with you again
In any case I'm here alone,
And every day, all the time, I constantly think of you.

So I also rejected the "點點" and the spelling of to, but accepted siong as more matching what I hear than my con.

Final Update

My friend just posted this other video, and with the help of that I think I finally cracked everything. Here is the lyrics from the new video:

一开始涯缅着
爱情本等就恁容易
所以涯无真真想起
恁样放落心去
结果涯有一断心
涯看着你佮着佢
涯正知道原来爱情
毋系讲爱就得宜

涯感动天感动地
做么感动毋着你
明明爱情就无结果
做么死死等到老
涯感动天感动地
做么感动毋着你
希望自家晓做一下
结果涯骗单侪

一開始涯緬著
爱情本等就恁容易
所以涯无真真想记
恁样放落心去
结果涯有一短信
涯看着你佮着佢
涯正知道原来爱情
毋系讲爱就得矣

涯感动天感动地
做么感动毋着你
明明爱情就无结果
做么死死等到老
涯感动天感动地
做么感动毋着你
希望自家晓做一下
结果涯骗单侪

涯想毋爱翻再去想你
想着涯心毋爱翻同去
万正系单侪在阿里
每日每时偏偏想着你

涯感动天…

which, aided by Minhakka, I transliterated as:

Yit khoi-chí ngâi m(i)én tò
Òi-tshîn pún-tén tshiù àn yûng-yì
Só-yi ngâi mô cin-cin sióng-khí
Àn-nyòng piòng lo'k sim hì
Kiet-kwó ngâi yìu yit thon sim
Ngâi khòn tò nyî kak tò kî
Ngâi càng chì-tò nyên-lôi òi-tshîn
M hè kóng òi tshiù tet-nyî

Ngâi kám-thùng thien kám-thùng thì
Tsò-mài kám-thùng m tò nyî
Mîn-mîn òi-tshîn tshiù mô kiet-kwó
Tsò-mài sí-sí tén teu ló
Ngâi kám-thùng thien kám-thùng thì
Tsò-mài kám-thùng m tò nyî
Hi-mòng tshìi-ka hiáu tsò yit-hà
Kiet-kwó ngâi phièn tan-sâ

Yit khoi-chí ngâi m(i)én tò
Òi-tshîn pún-tén tshiù àn yûng-yì
Só-yi ngâi mô cin-cin sióng-khí
Àn-nyòng piòng lo'k sim hì
Kiet-kwó ngâi yìu yit thon sim
Ngâi khòn tò nyî kak tò kî
Ngâi càng chì-tò nyên-lôi òi-tshîn
M hè kóng òi tshiù tet-nyî

Ngâi kám-thùng thien kám-thùng thì
Tsò-mài kám-thùng m tò nyî
Mîn-mîn òi-tshîn tshiù mô kiet-kwó
Tsò-mài sí-sí tén teu ló
Ngâi kám-thùng thien kám-thùng thì
Tsò-mài kám-thùng m tò nyî
Hi-mòng tshìi-ka hiáu tsò yit-hà
Kiet-kwó ngâi phièn tan-sâ

Ngâi sióng m òi fan-tsài hì sióng nyî
Sióng tò nga sim m òi fan thûng-hì
Vàn-cìn hè tan-sâ tshoi a-li
Mui-nyit mui-shî phien-phien sióng to nyî

Ngâi kám-thùng thien…

Note: pún-tén means "of course", and vàn-cìn is half made-up and should mean "anyway". Vàn-cìn is naturally based on the suggestion by Dylah Whs, but modified in the first character since Minhakka wouldn't give anything but fán for 反 followed by 正.

Final version

I came back to this song in the context of this blog post, where you can find the song with "correct" spelling and Mandarin glosses for all Hakka words as Ruby text (Furigana-like, if you know what that means), plust a full translation. I decided to modify Dylan Whs's suggestion to 万阵系 | vàn-chìn hè, so it matches what I heard better, and the spelling of vàn-chìn matches the meaning, more or less (better than before). And it's nice to know that the choice of was one I also made in the past :). I also thought about that "hit" mishearing: could it be 迄 | hit | to reach unto or 汔 | hit | to shed tears? Time to hear from Hakka Verse again! :)

  • That "hit" could also be 泣 | hip | weep silently, mind you. – MickG Aug 17 '17 at 13:01

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