August of 2020, I hired a tutor to learn Albanian.  In the process, my instructor, Luli Thomai, introduced me to several Albanian poets. 

Albanian is one of the oldest languages, with Indo-European roots and many Turkish and Latin words in its vocabulary.

Nouns are gendered.  There are five noun cases, plus singular/plural and indefinite/definite considerations when suffixes change. 

Words can have up to seven different spellings.  This makes it a challenge for a foreign speaker like myself, but the rewards are great since the phonetics are extremely rich.

Below is an example of a beautiful poem by Albanian writer Ismail Kadare.  The Albanian original, plus English and Spanish translations. 

Albanian Poetry

Mall (Longing) (Anhelo)

by Ismail Kadare

A few drops of rain fell on the glass.

For you I suddenly felt longing.

We live in the same city,

And rarely we see each other, how rarely.

It also seemed a little strange to me

how did this fall arrive, this morning,

the gloomy heavens are without storks

and the rains without a rainbow in between.

And the old saying of Heraclites

why the hell did I remember today:

"People who are not asleep are together,

while those who sleep, are separate."

In what dream have we fallen so badly,

that we cannot wake up?...

A few drops of rain fell on the glass

And for you, I did not feel longing.

 I used Google Translate first to translate the poem word for word. Then my Albanian language instructor guided the process as we translated each line.  Later, I made small adjustments in regards to nuances in the English language, rhythm, and pace.

Ca pika shiu ranë mbi qelq.
Për ty unë befas ndjeva mall.
Jetojmë të dy në një qytet,
Dhe rrallë shihemi, sa rrallë.

Edhe m'u duk pak e çuditshme
Si erdh kjo vjeshtë, ky mëngjes.
Qiejt e ngrysur pa lejlekë
Dhe shirat pa ylberë në mes.

Dhe thënia e vjetër e Heraklitit
Seç m'u kujtua sot për dreq :
« Të zgjuarit janë bashkë në botë,
Kurse të fjeturit janë veç ».

Në ç'ëndërr kemi rënë kaq keq,
Që dot s'po zgjohemi ne vallë ?...
Ca pika shiu ranë mbi qelq
Dhe unë për ty seç ndjeva mall.

Unas gotas de lluvia cayeron sobre el vidrio.

Para ti de repente sentí anhelo.

Vivimos en la misma ciudad,

Y raramente nos vemos, tan raro.

Tambien me parecio extraño 

como llego este otoño, esta mañana.

los cielos sombríos están sin cigüeñas

y las lluvias sin un arcoiris entre ellas.

Y el viejo dicho de Heraclitas

por que diablos me acorde hoy:

"La gente que no duerme estan juntos,

mientras los que duermen, están separados."

En que sueño nos hemos caídos tan mal, 

que no podemos despertar?...

Unas gotas de lluvia cayeron en el vidrio

Y para ti, ya no sentí anhelo.

   This is my translation in Spanish.

October 2019. Skanderbeg Square. Tirana, Albania.