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Carroll, Lewis: Vilmos apó (You are old, father William in Hungarian)

Portre of Carroll, Lewis
Portre of Weöres Sándor

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You are old, father William (English)

"You are old, father William," the young man said,

"And your hair has become very white;

And yet you incessantly stand on your head -

Do you think, at your age, it is right?


"In my youth," father William replied to his son,

"I feared it might injure the brain;

But, now that I'm perfectly sure I have none,

Why, I do it again and again."


"You are old," said the youth, "as I mentioned before,

And you have grown most uncommonly fat;

Yet you turned a back-somersault in at the door -

Pray what is the reason for that?"


"In my youth," said the sage, as he shook his grey locks,

"I kept all my limbs very supple

By the use of this ointment - one shilling a box -

Allow me to sell you a couple?"


"You are old," said the youth, "and your jaws are too weak

For anything tougher than suet;

Yet you finished the goose, with the bones and the beak -

Pray, how did you manage to do it?"


"In my youth," said his fater, "I took to the law,

And argued each case with my wife;

And the muscular strength, which it gave to my jaw,

Has lasted the rest of my life."


"You are old," said the youth, "one would hardly suppose

That your eye was as steady as ever;

Yet you balanced an eel on the end of your nose -

What made you so awfully clever?"


"I have answered three questions, and that is enough,"

Said his father. "Don't give yourself airs!

Do you think I can listen all day to such stuff?

Be off, or I'll kick you down stairs.

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Source of the quotation

Vilmos apó (Hungarian)

„Oly vén vagy, apó", szólt a fiatal,

látom színezüst hajadat,

de fejed tetején állsz folytonosan:

nem szégyelled magadat?"


„Mikor ifju valék", felelte a vén,

„féltem: megrázom agyam,

de hiszen nincsen, most már tudom én,

minek kímélni magam?"


„Vén vagy, mint mondtam", szólt a gyerek,

"s iszonyú kövér vagy, apó,

mégis vetsz hátra cigánykereket:

mondd meg, kérlek, mire jó?"


„Rég", mondta sörényt lengetve a bölcs,

„kenegettem a térdeimet,

csak egy shilling ez a régi kenőcs,

eladok belőle neked."


„Vén vagy", a kicsiny szólt, „roncs a fogad,

csak a pempőt nyelheted el,

de csőröstől zabálsz te ludat,

mi ennek a titka? felelj!"


„Hajdan", felel atyja, „a jogtudományt

gyakoroltuk, én, meg a nőm,

állkapcsom ezért lett sziklaszilárd,

és el nem apadt az erőm."


„Agg", kérdi a gyermek, „már a szemed

aligha tökéletes,

de a cethalat orrodon illegeted,

mitől vagy ilyen ügyes?"


„Három kérdésre felelni elég”,

szól atyja. „Mi vagy te? nagyúr?

Nincs más gondom, csak a sok hülyeség?

Takarodj, megrúglak alul."

Uploaded byP. T.
Source of the quotation

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