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Zaitun 刺桐

(2010-03-03 15:31:31)
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杂谈

分类: 泉州

Zaitun

It was a sunny April afternoon. I was on my way home from school. When I walked past Chongfu Temple, I looked up involuntarily and saw some flowers. The flowers were the color of fire that reminded me of passion. I was attracted by these little beautiful flowers and stopped.clip_image001

This is the city flower of Quanzhou, my hometown. It is called Zaitun. (Their biological name is Erythrina Variegata.)

I had walked the same way from my home to school everyday since Junior 1. When it was hot, I would walk in the shade of the Zaitun trees. However, I seldom looked up to see the Zaitun trees which are so common in our local area. Never would I stop to observe them. I always walked on the road unaware of the blossoms on the trees in spring and the fallen leaves in autumn.

That day, however, I stopped. I knew that people could see the flowers only for a limited time in March and April each year. Several days later, they would be gone and we won’t see them until the spring next year. I also knew that I was leaving Quanzhou this year to study overseas. This means it might be years before I can see these flowers again in Quanzhou.

Zaitun has been the symbol of Quanzhou for more than one thousand years. The city was surrounded by Zaitun trees in ancient times. When the foreign traders saw Zaitun, they knew it was Quanzhou. Thus, Quanzhou got its nickname, Zaitun city. With the development of the seaport of Quanzhou, the city of Zaitun became famous throughout the world. Indian’s knew it. Arab’s knew it. They knew that “Zaitun” was the largest seaport in China. Zaitun said hello to them when they arrived. Zaitun said farewell to them when they left.

Zaitun saw the prosperity of this old seaport and the depression as well.

In the Ming and Qing dynasty, the foreign trade was restricted, the fortune of the city which depended on maritime trade declined. In spite of this, local people never lost heart. Many of them went to Taiwan or abroad. Some of them did business in Southeast Asia. When they had earned a lot of money, they donated funds back to Quanzhou to help build schools, hospitals and other public facilities. Unfortunately, some of them would not see Zaitun again. However, they believed in the future of Zaitun. They kept the memory alive and contributed to the prosperity that exists today.

I am leaving Zaitun city very soon.

The next day, I brought a camera and took several pictures of the lovely flowers.

I will remember them forever.

刺桐

四月的一个下午,我走在放学的路上,一切都与平常一样。当我路过崇福寺的时候,我偶然一抬头,看到几枝红花从寺院的墙里探了出来。花红似火,像一串熟透了的辣椒,能够点燃人们火热的激情。我不禁驻足观赏。

这是我们泉州的市花,叫做刺桐。

我从初一起便天天从这里路过。刺桐帮我抵挡阳光、遮蔽风雨。但是我却很少抬头仰望这些在本地随处可见的树,更不会去细细观赏它们。每天,我都是大步流星地走过,从不留意花开叶落。

但在那一刻,我停住了脚步。我知道,这些花一般只能在三四月这短暂的时间里出现。几天之内,它们就又要和大家告别了,等到明年春天才会出现。我将离开泉州出国留学,也许几年都不能亲眼见到泉州的刺桐。

clip_image003刺桐在一千多年前便是泉州的象征。五代时全城遍植刺桐,泉州因此得名“刺桐城”。作为海上丝绸之路的起点,泉州以其发达的对外贸易闻名于世。阿拉伯人、印度人经常来此经商,阿拉伯人更是将 “Zaitun”(刺桐) 作为他们对泉州的称呼。当他们谈及东方大港时,首先想到的便是刺桐港。

刺桐经历了昌盛,也经历了衰落。

明清的闭关锁国政策,不得不让繁荣的古港萧条起来。但人们并未灰心。许多人秉承着“爱拼才会赢”的信念,开发台湾,闯荡东南亚。一些人在东南亚发家致富,成为著名的华侨。在功成名就之时,他们并没有忘记刺桐。他们经常捐款回国,支援泉州的建设。在泉州,华侨捐助建设的公共设施随处可见。有的华侨自从出国后也许就再也见不到刺桐,但是刺桐永存他们心中。当刺桐重振雄风之时,他们会因此而欣慰、自豪。

我将离开刺桐城。

第二天,我带了相机留下刺桐美丽的瞬间。它们不会在我的记忆中被抹去。

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