Peppo Bianchessi
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  • CHINA TOWN + eng subs

    84 views 4 years ago
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    China Town - Ink Town (Note: China - pronounced keena in italian means India Ink)

    « It’s a love song dedicated to ink and writing
    It’s right there, black on white, like Malevich’s Square. ». Caparezza

    It’s not faith that changed my life but ink
    that leads my fingers, my hand, my wrist.
    I’m still writing all over myself1, mutual love
    exploded suddenly like when you’re running in Boston (marathon)
    It’s not drugs that give me goosebumps rather
    thinking about Mozart, holding the quill pen, there
    over his desk, while drawing that note he makes2
    history without records, nor videoclips or social media.
    Valium and Prozac do not calm me down
    give me a dip pen or any pen on which they stamped
    the name of a medication.
    Ink alone can fathom my state of mind
    call it hypothalamus
    I envision it as a magician, kind of Dynamo
    forget about Freud, I have a blank sheet
    I mark it like the wing of an Albatros, so that I can fly up high
    Towards the city of Ink I’m starting off (diligently)
    a pilgrimage but not to Santiago, I’m going to Ink Town

    I’m going from the Apennines to the Andes3
    in my backpack my fountain pens and papers
    I sleep in a tent like a boy scout
    I make notes in a journal with no web layout
    (Ink Town)
    that place is not very far away
    ink flows instead of blood
    all I need is a pen and I laugh like a clown
    sometimes happiness costs less than a pound

    Ink Town, my Ganges,
    my Holy Land,
    my Mecca,
    the miracle giving voice to those who don’t speak
    those who stutter.
    A faraway land,
    like a pen pal,
    where we become children again like in a book by Pennac 4
    There is where the patience of amanuensis grows
    ink knows how many sentences
    can silence hide.
    All of a sudden it explodes,
    like crackling firecrackers
    like the keys of Montanelli’s Olivetti5
    The pointed rods charged with black smoke 6
    the vice
    of those who lay out papyrus paper
    like an Egyptian scribe.
    I’m writing this song but it says clearly
    that I get lost in ink
    like when you’re hunting a squid.
    I’m Columbus
    struggling
    rowing
    longing
    for a harbor by the sand
    I skip dinner
    The night is falling
    ballpoint pen
    on parchment
    but I’m not wandering through America
    I’m headed to Ink Town

    I’m going from the Apennines to the Andes
    in my backpack my fountain pens and papers
    I sleep in a tent like a boy scout
    I make notes in a journal with no web layout
    (Ink Town)
    that place is not very far away
    ink flows instead of blood
    all I need is a pen and I laugh like a clown
    sometimes happiness costs less than a pound

    It is with ink
    that I wrote
    each one of my songs.
    I gave a new face
    to this Billy Preston’s hair.
    My next concert,
    I hope it will be soon
    I get in the van all sweaty
    I watch the unlit stage
    I leave it there, where it is
    from the car window it looks like a surrealist movie
    kind of Luis Bunuel
    I get to my hotel and
    the room lights up, it’s almost morning
    there’s always a pen on the nightstand

    (Ink Town)
    that place is not very far away
    ink flows instead of blood
    all I need is a pen and I laugh like a clown
    sometimes happiness costs less than a pound

    note
    1. « scriversi addosso » is not a standard idiom but it calls to mind the standard idiom used for « wetting oneself ». a a physiological need that can’t be restrained so another way to translate this would be « I’m still prey to a compulsion to write »
    2. this also reads : « drawing that F note »
    3. Title of a classic of 19 century Italian literature
    4. Daniel Pennac is a French writer, fairly popular in Italy, known for his imaginative language and compelling characters. His name sounds like the Italian word for « pen » (penna)
    5. Indro Montanelli, the archetype of Italian journalism, often portrayed with his portable Olivetti typewriter
    6. this could mean anything : canna has many possible translations without a context. It could be a writing device (a stick with a tapered end) ; a joint ; or a rifle barrel


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