吴冠中《绿衣姑娘》 -经典散文英译-中英双语赏析

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绿衣姑娘(1)

吴冠中

我住的会仙(贤)堂,曾是清末北京鼎鼎有名的大饭馆。想当年,画栋雕窗,面临什刹海,楼上楼下,文士雅集(2),商贾交易,歌女卖唱,多少豪富人家在此举办过婚嫁喜筵!梁园日暮(3),如今已成为六、七个单位数十户职工宿舍的大杂院,院内地震棚歪歪倒倒,小径曲折,乱石成堆,房檐碰头,不堪回首。我住的是最后院的最后两间平房,后墙外是一条小小的胡同,后墙窗高,在室内看不到胡同,但可听到胡同里磨剪刀的叫唤声(4)、汽车喇叭声、妇女吵嚷声……这些混杂的声音不时搅乱我的构思(5)。但终于我发现其中有一种声音是我所喜欢的:“信——,拿报纸——”显然,那是一位姑娘清脆嘹亮的声音,她将尾音拉得长长的,那音浪在胡同里家家庭院的上空久久荡漾,由我听来,那是音乐!

幸运的人们在等待喜讯,分离的亲人在盼望音信。人,总生活在希望中,个人的命运,国家的前景,世界的风云……一切未来的和未知的在引人关注,谁知明天将发生什么事情!邮递员,她送来了未知的情况和消息,有情和无情的真实(6)!犹如别人,我天天盼信,墙外胡同里(7)那位邮递员姑娘的呼喊多亲切啊,日子久了,似乎我早已熟识她。

后来,我走在偏僻的小街小胡同里,便经常不自觉地留心那些骑着绿色自行车,穿着绿色制服的邮递员姑娘们,不知哪一位是我天天听着她呼喊的老相识,她们都一样的美!我青年时期曾害目疾,住在昆明一家医院里动手术,双目全被包扎了,一切生活听护士安排照料。每日早晚,一位护士姑娘清亮柔和的声音叫我:“考体温(测体温)。”我渐渐熟悉这声音,感激这声音,爱这声音(8),偷偷地爱她了,虽然全不知她是什么模样啊!当我病愈打开双目,想在许多护士姑娘中发现谁是她,但匆匆要出院了,偏偏没有再听到她的声音,我从此同样敬爱都穿着白衣服的她们!白衣战士,洁白是美吧!绿衣的邮递员,和平的绿色也是美啊!

一个下雪天,我正在家作画,突然前院一个姑娘的熟悉的声音在遥唤:“吴冠中,打戳——”邮递员来了!我放下画具,急急忙忙地从地震棚的夹道间冲到前院去。待我赶到大门口,看到邮递姑娘的绿色自行车上挂着一个不小的邮袋,邮袋里还装着满满的信件。她如何能离开邮袋呢!我才明白她为什么不能亲自送信入院,只能像草原牧羊女一般用高嗓门遥遥呼唤!天寒,她穿着厚厚的棉袄,套不上绿色的使者之衣了,宽大的围脖裹住了头,遮掩了一半脸面,我看不清她的真面目。待交过信,她没有意识到我还想说话,便敏捷地跨上了自行车,衬着耀眼的白雪,人和车的颜色显得格外深暗,她迅速飞去的背影仿佛是一只展翅的乌鸦,不,是喜鹊!

The Green-Uniformed Girl

Wu Guanzhong

The place where I live,known as Hui-xian-tang,used to be a well-known big restaurant in Beijing during the last years of the Qing Dynasty.With painted pillars and carved windows,it was then a splendid mansion facing the Shi-sha-hai Lake.The rooms downstairs and upstairs would be packed with literati enjoying a get-together,tradesmen negotiating business affairs,and singsong girls performing for a living.And it also witnessed numerous wedding feasts held by rich and influential families.But now,like a run-down royal palace,it has become a residential compound occupied by dozens of households with some of its members working at six or seven different organizations.Piled high with rubble here and there,the whole place is in a terrible mess with makeshift shacks,a narrow path running zigzag across it,and eaves so low as to hit the head of passers-by.I live in a one-story two-room house in the rearmost backyard backed by a small lane.As the window is high up in the wall,I can’t see anything in the lane,but I can hear a lot of noises therefrom,such as the cries of itinerant knife sharpeners,the blaring of car horns and the shouting and screaming of women.The mixed noises often disturb me in my work.Exceptionally,however,I find one voice so very pleasing.“Letters,and newspapers!—”It’s the clear,ringing voice of a young girl,uttered with a much prolonged last syllabic sound.It seems to keep echoing over the courtyard of each and every household in the neighborhood.To me,it’s music!

People who have fortune on their side will look forward to good news; people separated from their dear ones will long to hear from them.Man always lives in hopes.The personal fate,the prospects of the nation,the fast changing world—in short,all variables and uncertainties in the future—are causing great concern.Nobody knows what tomorrow has got in store for us!The postgirl delivers to us news about the unknown future and about the real state of affairs,pleasant or unpleasant.Like others,I’m eager for mail every day.How heart-warming is the cry of the postgirl coming from the small lane back of my house!As the years go by,I seem to have known her for a long time.

Later,whenever I took a stroll along the secluded small lane,I would unconsciously turn my eyes towards the green-uniformed postgirls riding green-coloured bikes,wondering which of them was the one whose familiar voice I had heard calling every day.These girls were equally beautiful!When I was young,I once entered a hospital in Kunming,capital of Yunnan Province,to undergo an operation for eye trouble.With both eyes bandaged,I left myself entirely in the care of a nurse.Every morning and evening,I would hear her calling me in a clear,soft voice,“Let’s take your temperature!”Gradually I became familiar with the voice.I felt grateful and well disposed towards it.In short,I fell in love with her on the sly though I didn’t even know what she looked like.The day when I had my eye bandage removed after recovery,I was eager to find out from among the many nurses the one who had attended to me,but in vain because leaving in a flurry,I failed to hear her voice again.Nevertheless,I’ve since held all white-robed nurses in high esteem.O white-robed nurses,how beautiful is the spotlessly white colour!O green-uniformed postmen and postwomen,how beautiful is the green colour signifying peace!

One snowy afternoon,when I was doing painting,I heard the familiar voice of a girl calling at a distance from the front courtyard,“Wu Guanzhong,your seal,please—!”Yes,that was the postgirl!I put down the painting brush and hurried to the front courtyard through the passageway between the makeshift shacks.Arriving at the gate,I saw hanging on the postgirl’s green bike a big postbag bulging with mail.Of course that was the last thing for her to leave behind under any circumstances.I immediately realized why,instead of going to the rearmost courtyard to deliver the letter to me in person,she had had to call me from afar at the top of her voice like a shepherdess on the grassland.It was cold and she was dressed in a cumbersome cotton-padded jacket,which was so big that she could no longer wear the green uniform over it.The big scarf round her neck concealed half of her face so that I was unable to see what she really looked like.Not knowing that I was eager to talk a few words to her,she quickly mounted her bike and left.Against the blinding white snow,both rider and bike looked especially dark.Her quickly receding figure brought to mind a raven on the wing,or rather a magpie!

《绿衣姑娘》是著名画家兼散文家吴冠中写于1981年5月的一篇热情颂扬邮递员的佳作。邮递员风里来雨里去,日复一日为人们“送来了未知的情况和消息,有情和无情的真实”。作者敬爱他们,觉得“那些穿着绿色制服的邮递员姑娘”的喊声是“音乐”,她们个个“都一样的美”。

注释

(1) “绿衣姑娘”指“邮递员姑娘”,本可译为The Postgirl,现直译为The Green-Uniformed Girl,是为了保留原文的形象,读起来较生动。

(2)“文士雅集”意即“文人聚会”,译为literati enjoying a get-together,其中literati意同men of letters。

(3)“梁园日暮”可按“破败的王室园囿”译为a run-down royal palace(或garden)。

(4)“磨剪刀的叫唤声”译为the cries of itinerant knife sharpeners。由于磨刀者大多穿街走巷,从事流动职业,故必须在译文中加上itinerant(流动的)一词,才能充分表达原意。

(5)“这些混杂的声音不时搅乱我的构思”可译为The mixed noises often disturbed me in my work或The mixed noises often disturbed me while I was absorbed in thinking。

(6)“有情和无情的真实”意即“或好或坏的实际情况”,故译the real state of affairs,pleasant or unpleasant。

(7)“墙外胡同里”译为from the small lane back of my house,其中back of和at the back of同义。

(8)“爱这声音”应按“对此有好感”的意思译为I felt well disposed towards it,比I loved it确切。

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