So Much Is Lost In Translation

A problem with not knowing language….

So Much Lost in Translation

I. Lost in Translation

There is so much lost in translation,

a slew of misinformation,

when shopping local stores

lost on all shopping floors

never finding missing equation.


I could have worked for the CIA,

great government job with decent pay,

there is no translating,

my gibberish is grating,

I have no idea what people say!


The one thing gathered from teaching,

I feel this is not overreaching,

I should have learned Spanish,

barriers to vanish,

my teaching could have been for reaching.


I took adult classes in Hebrew

a change of pace to learn something new

I even made flash cards

to add to my discards

had to drop this course after a few.


After spending some time in Asia,

I suffer from language amnesia,

thought I learned one word here

or another word there

the language I learned was fantasia.


Those years of University French

I still feel like I’m stuck on the bench

to point out ne parl par

instead of where’s the car?

my tongue twists like a turn of a torque wrench.


A problem with not knowing languages,

my French is a mouth full of lozenges,

whats worse is my German,

an attempt at Russian,

each word to cause a trained ear anguish.


My apologies to the whole world

how your languages come out all gnarled,

I want to be worldly

and come off as friendly,

till language ignorance is unfurled.

Jamie Lee Hamann
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Jamie Lee Hamann

My name is Jamie Lee Hamann and I have a passion for writing short fiction and poetry. I started writing for TCE around 2015 and since then I have finished seven collections of poetry and plans for more. I currently live in Lemmon Valley NV with my family. If you desire to find my other work on the internet feel free to stop by my website The website offers articles on poetry, poems, and links to all my other writing.

3 thoughts on “So Much Is Lost In Translation

  • March 10, 2019 at 7:12 AM

    Nicely penned verse, Jamie, and I like the humor attached to a difficult subject: languages. I always had trouble learning new languages and wish I could be fluent in French, Spanish, and a few others. I enjoyed your poem. Well done.

  • March 12, 2019 at 6:42 PM

    Nicely penned. Languages can help us communicate but it is difficult learning to be fluent in more than one and we often become like a traveling UN picking up a bit here and a bit there. I took French in high school and still know a few words here and there, then came Spanish which is now mixed in with the French and tried to learn German three times. The two languages I am fluent in are English and Latvian.

  • March 17, 2019 at 8:50 AM

    Thank you Phyllis and Rasma for stopping by and reading about my struggles with language. I think some of us just have more skill in languages then others and I am not one of the skillful ones. Jamie


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