Working on “Skaapwagtertjie”, the Afrikaans version of “Shepherd Girl”, I am surprised at the first draft: how closely it approximates the English without being laboured; nonetheless, I do not intend slavishly to imitate the original. That manner of mere translation I find offensive—a gross abuse of language for the sake of fidelity (invariably at the cost of good verse) that I wholly condemn; and thus, whilst I began with a rudimentary direct Afrikaans translation, I shall let the language take its course and effect whatever changes to content and style it requires. Rarely do the poetic subtleties of a line migrate between languages, but where I can replicate these without contorting the Afrikaans, I shall do so.

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