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微型马

(2007-09-15 17:18:58)
标签:

文学/原创

英国当代小说

英语译文

此马非马

诠释小人物

 

 

                        The Small Horse

                           微 型 马

                               作者:Steve Walker (England)

                               翻译:Ironox (China)

     

I thought it was a mouse at first, and wasn’t bothered. Living in a place like this, one must expect the odd mouse. True: it whinnied in the night and woke me up more than once.

最初,我以为那是只耗子,我也就没太在意。住在这种鬼地方,每个人都会期盼出现只奇特的耗子。然而,事实是:这东西在夜里的嘶声不止一次地把我从睡梦中惊醒。

I climbed out of bed, pulled back the curtains and looked through sleepy eyes at the closed warehouse over the road. I thought the whinnies came from there. True, also: it clip-clopped behind the skirting-board, just like a horse would if horses were small. But I didn’t think of that. I took it to be a heavy-footed rodent.

我爬下床,拉起窗帘,瞪着惺忪的睡眼观望靠近仓库的路面。我以为那嘶声是从那边传来的。然而,事实却是:猛烈的马蹄敲击声来自连接墙壁与地板的壁脚板。假如马有这么小的话,那东西可真像一匹马。可是,我不这么想,我觉得它应该是一种长有强壮爪子的啮齿动物。

I first saw it one Sunday tea-time----the most miserable time of the week for me, I turn off the TV to avoid the religious programs and, left with nothing to do, I become miserable: always do. I was buttering some bread when I heard horses’ noises.

我第一次看清它是在一个星期天喝下午茶的时候——一个星期里对我来讲最痛苦的时刻。并且,我为了不看那些宗教节目而关掉了电视,可又没有什么事情可做,于是我便更痛苦:情况总是这样!当我正往面包上涂抹黄油时,这时我听到了马的嘶声和喷鼻声。

I glanced, Wow! There it was, hoofing the line by the lander door. A small horse! No larger, indeed, than an underfed mouse----ribs showing, eyes popping. I watched it carefully, stood still with bread in one hand and knife with a scoop of butter on it in the other.

我扫了一眼。哇噻!那东西就在那儿,它正用蹄子敲打食品柜门边的亚麻油毡浮雕。一匹小马!微型马!真的,它绝不比一只营养不良的耗子更大——肋骨突显,眼睛暴睁。我一只手拿着面包,另一只手拿着上面还放着一勺黄油的餐刀呆呆地站在那儿目不转睛地注视着它。

Yes, it was certainly, most definitely, a horse, a small horse.

I must say, I’ve always been the same, ever since I passed twenty. I used to be a songwriter then, or thought I was, but all my songs had been turned down and I was at breaking point.

是的,一点都不错!千真万确!毋庸置疑!它就是一匹马!一匹微型马!

我必须告诉你,从我二十岁起我就一直是这样。我过去是个流行歌曲作曲家,起码我自以为自己是个作曲家;可是,我所做的所有歌曲都被拒绝演唱,于是,我不干了。

Nothing whatso-ever had gone right for me. I’d recently started my present job, and told a salesman I worked with about my problem.

“Give it up,” he jeered at me. “You’ve got a good job here. Give it up. You’ll never make it.”

就我而言,无论什么事,都没有我能干好的。我最近才开始干我现在的工作,并且我把我的苦恼告诉给一个和我一起工作的售货员。

“放弃吧,”他嘲弄地对我说:“你在这儿得到了一份儿不错的工作。拉倒吧,你永远也别想做出什么好曲子。”

What he really meant was: You’re an ordinary bloke, like me. You’ve no business thinking you’re a songwriter. People like us aren’t songwriters.

He was correct, of course. I followed his advice, but note now that ever since, it seems to me, I’ve avoided people and things that could be judged as being out of the ordinary.

其实,他真正的意思是:你和我一样,都是些凡夫俗子。你根本无权以为自己是个什么作曲家,我们这种人根本就不配当个作曲家。

没错。当然,他说的对,我听从了他的忠告,的确得注意这一点了,从现在开始吧;对于我来讲,我要尽量避免人们把我当作离经叛道的家伙或者,我的所作所为被人们认为是疯癫之举。

So what was I to do when confronted with the crisis of having a small horse infesting my flat?

I needed advice, but only knew ordinary people. I told one or two and they said; “ Come on, man----stop pulling our leg,” And they proceeded to avoid me for the next few days.

可在我住的地方,我面临着微型小马侵扰的紧急关头,我该怎么办呢?

我需要有人能指点迷津,可是我只认识些凡夫俗子。我曾经把这事跟一两个人说了,可人家说:“得了,小子——别拿我们开心了。”于是,接下来,他们竟然好几天都躲着我走。

I told Mr Ducksbury, my sales-manager. He reacted the same, then started showing me new photos of his grandchildren.

“No. No. Really. I’m serious.” I said.

“Oh, yeah. A small horse? There’s no such thing.”

“But there is---I’ve seen one.”

“Then why’s no one else ever seen one? What makes you so special?”

我又把这事告诉了我的销售负责人,Ducksbury先生。他和那几个人反应相同,不同的是,接下来,他开始拿给我看他孙子们新近拍的照片。

“真的,真的,千真万确,真不是开玩笑。”我说。

“欧?是吗?微型马?小马?哪有这种事,胡扯。”

“可,就是有啊!——我亲眼看见一匹!”

“那么怎么没有别人看见过?你小子怎么就这么特别?”

There was a young man who’d worked part-time in the packing department for a bit. I’d avoided talking to him at the time, even when I needed to check on a stock-level, because someone had said he was a painter---oils and all that.

I looked up his address in the files. It was near one of my calls---I went there that very day.

有个在包装部已经干了段时间的年轻临时工。那时,我尽可能避免跟他搭茬,即便我盘库时,我也尽可能离他远点儿,因为有人告诉我他是个画家——用油彩以及类似的其他东东画画的家伙。

我在登记册上查到了他的住址,就在我的电话号码旁边——我就在查到他住址的当天去了他那儿。

“Excuse me.”

“Yes.”

“You may remember me from Hollis’s. Can I come in for a moment?”

He let me in.

There were two naked girls seated back to back on a dais thing. He was painting them, all in orange.

“打扰一下。”

“嗯。”

“你可能在Hollis一家人那儿见过我。我可以进去待一会儿吗?”

他让我进了门。

有两个光屁股姑娘背对背坐在一个类似台子的地方。他正在画她们,全部用的橘黄色。

I was highly embarrassed. One put on a dressing-grown and went to make a pot of tea, but the other just sat there scratching herself. I never got the tea, and didn’t gabble through much of my story to the young man, either.

我马上感到很不好意思。其中一个穿上一件长外衣去沏茶,而另一个则仍然坐在那里浑身又搔又抓。我没喝到茶,当然我也没喋喋不休地把我的故事通盘说给那个年轻人。

He grew sarcastic very quickly and asked me to leave. The girls started laughing as he prodded me out. When I got back home the horse was drinking from a saucer of milk I’d left out for it.

他很快变得尖酸刻薄起来,并且请我离开,当他硬把我推出门时,那两个姑娘开始笑起来。我回到家,那微型马正低头喝我留给它的一碟牛奶。

I poured some breakfast cereal into my hand and offered it for the thing to eat. It stood thinking, but wouldn’t dare come. I got bored of crouching there, so went off to watch TV.

我在我手上倒了一些早餐吃的粮食类东西让它作为食品吃。它站在那儿琢磨,就是不敢过来。我蜷在那儿烦透了,于是我就离开它去看电视。

But I tried to get it to eat from my hand every time. I saw it and, at last, a fortnight later, mid-morning----I hadn’t bothered to go to work---it trotted up and ate contentedly from my hand.

然而,每当我看到它,我都试图让它吃我手上的东西,并且,最后,两周以后,一个不到中午,早晨又过了一半儿的时候——那时,我还没厌烦去上班——它溜溜达达地走上来从我手上心满意足地吃东西。

I was thrilled to see it close up. With my feeding, it had put some weight. What a perfect little thing it was! But, being the way I am, I couldn’t loterate its mystery, its extraordinariness. I decided to kill it, to put poison down and be rid of it.

能如此贴近地看到它,我心里一阵激动。在我的喂养下,它竟然长了肉。多完美的小东西啊!可是,即便我这样喂它,我还是不能为它的秘密存在,它的非凡而保持沉默。我决心杀了它,在喂它的食儿里下上毒药除掉它。

As soon as this thought entered my mind, the horse gave me a quick look, reared, and galloped away. I pulled off my shoe and threw it after. But my aim was bad, the horse disappeared unharmed through the hole where the plug used to be when I had the old fridge.

这念头刚在我脑海里出现,那畜生便迅速地扫了我一眼竖起了前蹄,然后便风驰电掣般地跑掉了。我脱下一只鞋向它砸过去,可是,没打中,那马毫发未损地钻进洞里,那洞是我放这台旧冰箱之前就有的裂缝。

A few nights later, I woked up scared. A dream, I thought, already forgotten----or was the horse in my bedroom?

I was suddenly petrified of it, as if it were a spider. I searched the bed sheets, looked under the furniture, checked the shirting board for cracks, new or old.

过了几个晚上,有一天我被吓醒了。是个梦,我想。可是已经记不起来梦见什么了——或许是在我卧室里的马?

我突然由于这个想法而惊慌失措起来,好象那东西是只蜘蛛。我翻起我的床单找,在家具下面找,沿着墙围子裂缝找——不管是新近裂开的,还是早先就有的。

Nothing. Once again I pulled back the curtains to look at that closed warehouse over the road.

I’d always had my suspicious about it, and this time it could be tiny lights shining behind the filthy grilled windowns at pavement level.

什么也没有。我再一次拉起窗帘向靠近仓库的路面张望。我总是怀疑它应该就在那地方。这一次,在与马路齐平的那些脏兮兮的铁格窗后我看到了微弱的光在闪烁。

I got dressed at once, put a torch in my pocket and hurried over. I stood right in front of the grilled windows----but they were too filthy; I couldn’t see anything through them.

There was an old door there, on crusty hinges. I kicked it open, two kicks. I switched on my torch and went inside. I was in a foreman’s office: cabinets, desk and such still there. A twelve-year-old calendar was on the wall.

我急忙穿起衣裳,往口袋里塞了一只手电,然后匆匆跑过去。我这会儿就站在铁格窗前——可是这些窗子真是太脏了,隔着窗子什么也看不见。那儿有扇老掉牙的门,门上的铰链锈得结了层厚厚的壳,我把门踢开,踢了两下。我打开手电进到里面,现在我站在很久以前的一间工头的办公室里——一些橱柜,一张办公桌以及原先就有的东西还都原封未动地留在这儿,墙上挂着有着十二年历史的旧挂历。

I listened. Yes---a mouse-like scratching. This was surely where my small horse had come from, and maybe, I figured, there’d be a whole herd in the warehouse somewhere.

In the light from my torch nothing had any color. I walked on battered floorboards towards the main storeroom. A tall wooden sliding door barred my way.

我站下听了听。没错——有耗子般的动静。那肯定是我见过的那匹小马弄出的响动。并且,可能,我估计,在仓库的某个地方有一大群那东西。

我手电所照之处没有任何动物的踪迹。我朝着主仓室沿着墙板壁走过去。一扇高大的木制滑板门挡住了我的去路。在门上没找到门把手,于是我推了推。然后,不管我怎么耐着性子鼓捣,就是打不开它。我给了它一脚,可它又厚又结实,仍然纹丝不动。

What else could I do? I gave up and turned to go. But after only a few steps, I heard the sliding door open behind me. I jumped in fright. Had I pressed a button without realizing it? Was there someone there? I shone my torch. It flitted across a huge ceiling, showing smashed skylights with the night above. Then I waved it around the warehouse floor.

我还能怎么办呢?于是我放弃了,转身想离开。可是就在我往回走了几步,我听到那扇滑板门在我身后打开了。我吓了一跳。难道我触动了什么机关而自己却没意识到?门里有什么东东?我举起手电照,光柱掠过宽大的天花板,天花板上的缝隙露出夜空中零碎的星光。然后,我又晃着手电在仓库地板上照。

There were horses, yes, quite a few, just like the one in my flat. But also, everywhere, as if assembled to witness some spectacular event, were people, tiny people. Thousands and thousands of them---all just as tall as a little finger. Most were naked, some wore paper hats and carried spears of broken glass. Lots of them were huddled around little fires they’d made. They stood still in my torchlight, but where my torch couldn’t catch, some were running.

哇噻!那么多马!千真万确,一点儿都不骗你,很多很多马,都和曾在我家出现的那只一个模样。并且;还有,到处都是小人,小小的人,微型人!好像他们聚集在一起来观看一个惊人的事件。他们有成千上万——都像人的小拇指一般大。大多数小人都光着屁股,也有一些头上戴着纸帽子,手里拿着碎玻璃做成的长矛。其中有许多小人乱挤在一堆堆他们点起的篝火旁。他们在我的手电光下惊呆般地傻站着,可是在我手电还不曾照到的地方,有些小人开始逃窜起来。

I’m home now, in bed with the light on. I’m going to sit up all night reading the Bible out loud.

现在我回到家里,开着灯坐在床上。我打算大声地诵读圣经,坐上一晚上,读上一晚上。

 

TRANSLATION:

March, 3, 2006

Shizuishan

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