Finally! First time seeing a double infinitive on DL. So this is how you do it: poder + hablar
Nope, "poder" doesn't use a preposition before another verb, just like "can" in English.
- I can cook. Puedo cocinar.
- We can start now. Podemos empezar ahora.
Chris732090 ... Quiero poder a hablar español
Would translate to:
I want - to be able - to - to speak - spanish
Hablar = to speak
To add the first "a" would say. hey look at me I'm a Gringo
I'd say no. Poder (literally power in Spanish) is all about having the power to do something---similar to lograr.
It's different than just trying, which would be intentar or tratar de.
Two different verbs, in fact you are misusing the word ''try'' (though this is very common, possibly because it is much simpler to say than ''be able to''). In Spanish, French and other languages, the concepts are more defined. Poder relates to ability and possibility and as duggg said, power, just as pouvoir does in French and both are irregular (it's a Latin thing). It's a good word for translating ''might'', as in ''that might happen'' - ''eso podría pasar''. Whereas to try really means to attempt, to test, if at first you don't succeed, try, try again. You wouldn't use ''poder'' to translate it into Spanish.
"Speak spanish" is correct since it would mean "to know spanish" (saber español). "Talk" goes more for "talk IN spanish" (hablar en español). In this case, the sentence represents the desire to know spanish.
I believe that, actually, the sentence is about being able to "speak Spanish."
In addition, I know Spanish when I hear it, even if I don't understand it.
I can read Spanish (and "know" Spanish in that respect), but am not very good at talking in Spanish (speaking Spanish).
I would like to be more able to speak Spanish, as my ability is weak.
Many people "know" something in theory, without being able to perform it.
so what's the limit to stacking all these verbs? this is the first time I see it stack up to three
There is no limit, grammatically, but the sentence would usually end up hard to understand with more than 3 stacked infinitives, though it would still be valid. Solo tienes que querer tratar de aprender a necesitar ir a hablar con gente confusa. You just have to want to try to learn to need to go to talk to confusing people.