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The below is the partial lyrics of <童话镇>.

总有一条蜿蜒在童话镇里七彩的河
沾染魔法的乖张气息
却又在爱里曲折
川流不息扬起水花
又卷入一帘时光入水
让所有很久很久以前
都走到幸福结局的时刻

The problematic line is this one:

沾染魔法的乖张气息 却又在爱里曲折

It's difficult for me to parse it:

[沾染(verb)][[魔法]的[乖张气息]]

[[沾染(adjective)魔法]的[乖张气息]]

[却][又][在[爱里]][曲折(verb)]

[却][又][在[爱里曲折(noun)]]

It seem to be not having enough pre/postpositions; is it usual in Mandarin sentences? How do I parse it and what does it mean?

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总有一条蜿蜒在童话镇里七彩的河
there is always a 7-coloured river meandering through the town in fairy stories,

沾染魔法的乖张气息 (沾染: tainted 乖张:odd 气息:aura, air)
tainted with an odd magical aura,

却又在爱里曲折 (曲折: meander)
but somehow meandering in love,

川流不息扬起水花 ( 扬起: the dappled surface of turbulent wind-blown water)
flowing on and on, dappled and splashing,

又卷入一帘时光入水
drawn into the mists of time slip into the water

让所有很久很久以前
hope all of us (in this river of love) from long long ago

都走到幸福结局的时刻
are all headed for a happy ending someday.

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First: Lyrics have poetic license, they don't need to be grammatical or altogether logical - quite like in most languages.


Second: There's a translation here on douban:

沾染魔法的乖张气息 Tainted by the wildest of magic

却又在爱里曲折 It twists and turns in love.


Third: We can break down the first part like this:

沾染 = corrupted by

魔法的 = magic

乖张 = odd

气息 = flavor/spirit

Which would roughly give us something like:

(I) was corrupted by the odd influences of magic

or the better translation above:

Tainted by the wildest of magic

and the second part:

却又 = yet/never the less

在爱里 = in love

曲折 = winding

which roughly equates to something like

but winds in love

or the better:

It twists and turns in love.

  • @K._ If you go back to the first line that you posted, it looks like everything is referring back to the river (河). I think your literal understanding is quite on point. – user3306356 Mar 4 '18 at 14:53

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