20140718【佳译品尝】居在龟湾(曹明伦 译)

汪德均 (老顽童) 译坛新宠
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发表于:2014-07-18 08:12 [只看楼主] [划词开启]

            第三届“《英语世界》杯”翻译大赛参考译文 


2012-9-24 17:52| 发布者: sisu04| 查看: 914| 评论: 0|来自: 《英语世界》博客
 


          居在龟湾(曹明伦 译)
   
           〔美〕E.B.怀特1
   
   
   
   蚊虫随夜暖而至,我们的卧室成了它们的星空剧场。我整夜忽起忽卧,挥毛巾驱赶蚊虫,为让毛巾有威力,我还将一端浸湿。由于彻夜未眠,今晨我感到头晕,像是喝醉了酒,而这种状态颇利于写作,因命笔立言的责任感此时全被抛在了脑后。昨晚妻子拿来一大块纱网,我俩跪下来给壁炉口蒙上了面纱,使壁炉看上去像个新娘。(我们对蚊虫的来路有多种推测,包括猜它们是顺壁炉烟囱而下。)我曾从第三大道那家五金店买回几个活动纱窗,将其安装在各个窗口,但这幢楼的窗框很旧,而且不规则,结果窗框和纱窗之间便有缝隙,只要没患象皮肿2,任何蚊子都能轻易地钻进房间。(另外把下扇窗提起以亮出纱窗透风时,上下窗扇交错处甚至会有更大的缝隙,这缝隙屋里人很难想到,但蚊虫肯定都不会忽视。)我还买了台老掉牙的窗式空调,只花了25美金,非常便宜,而且我很喜欢。它只能削掉出风口边的热气,对室内温度几乎不起调节作用,但它发出的巨大噪声使人想起乘地铁的情景,因此我可以关掉灯,闭上眼,持巾待挥,被叮上第一口时便想象自己正在挤地铁,被生气的女孩用饰针刺扎。
   
  对龟湾蚊虫的来路,我还有一种想法:它们是从空调进风口吹入卧室的,就像鹰借暖流扶摇而上,蚊虫乘冷风飘然而入。这想法虽然离谱,但一个人要消磨无法入眠的时辰,总得有那么点想法。我曾想买一种老式的喷雾杀虫剂,为此去商店,问伙计要飞牌喷雾枪和喷雾油3,他用怪怪的目光打量我,仿佛想知道我这些年都待在哪里。“我们有比飞牌厉害得多的玩意儿。”说着他拿出一罐药剂,该药剂含有氯丹和另外几种不宜明说的化学成分。我告诉他说,我对氯丹过敏,不能用那玩意儿。“会直接伤肝的。”我一边说一边狠狠瞪了他一眼。
   
  早晨是这房间里最惬意的时分。终于精疲力竭,餍足的蚊子歇在墙头和天花板上安睡,以消困解乏。屋里是乱糟糟一堆床单枕毯和随手丢下的衣袍,窗前有叶片蓬茸的蔓藤过滤明晃晃的日光。像蚊子一样,空调也终于安静下来。到日头当空的正午,从第三大道会传来狂躁诱发者——美洲蝉的噪鸣。花园里会有麻雀唧唧啾啾——那是它们随性的二度求偶4,一种压抑的激情,与酷暑谐和;夏日之恋,悠然而恹然。失去这套公寓,我会怀念它的;今年秋天我们就要搬走,搬回牧场5去定居。我每每试图简化生活,烧掉用不着的书,卖掉不常坐的椅子,丢掉积累的杂物。不过我已经注意到,从长远来看,我这些净化措施——这些我妻子出于谨慎和宽容而听之任之的净化措施——通常都使得生活更加复杂,想必这次也会重蹈覆辙,因为我不信自己会安于这种状态,作为一匹老马,想来我将迈出的第一步就是着手改善那座牧场。我甚至还会参加一个牧场改良协会。在上次试图用火净化自己6的过程中,我设法弄了个动物园7,而且维持至今,我还在大桶大桶地为动物拎水,有时我觉得干这活儿已力不从心。 
                                   
  
   
   
  Notes注释:
   
   
   
  1、E.B.怀特(1899~1985),美国作家,曾长期为著名周刊《纽约客》撰稿,以其简洁、生动、恬雅而又不失幽默的随笔著称于世,另著有儿童文学作品《精灵鼠小弟》、《夏洛的网》和《吹小号的天鹅》。
   
  2、象皮肿又称象皮病,患此病者之腿、臀等部位会因水肿而肥大。
   
  3、曾用于上世纪20年代至50年代中期的美国飞牌喷雾枪,类似我国上世纪中期广泛使用的滴滴涕(DDT)喷雾器,用时需卸下喷雾罐加注杀虫剂。
   
  4、北美高纬度地区的麻雀从3、4月份开始繁殖,每年至少可繁殖2窝。
   
  5、指怀特夫妇于1933年在缅因州汉考克县南部买下的一个濒海牧场。怀特于1938年携妻儿在牧场安家,1942年应《纽约客》召唤重返纽约,此后15年间一直往返于两地,很多时候都生活在那座牧场。
   
  6、意思是“上次试图简化自己的生活”(指1938年至1942年曾在缅因牧场安家定居),“用火净化”一语双关,一指上文“烧书”,二是借用福音版《圣经》措辞“is药
  purified by fire”[见Good News Bible/Today’s English Version (Zechariah 13:9) ]。
   
  7、“动物园”指缅因牧场的禽畜养殖场。

附录:


At Turtle Bay

By E. B. White


Mosquitoes have arrived with the warm nights, and our bedchamber is their theater under the stars. I have been up and down all night, swinging at them with a face towel dampened at one end to give it authority. This morning I suffer from the lightheadedness that comes from no sleep—a sort of drunkenness, very good for writing because all sense of responsibility for what the words say is gone. Yesterday evening my wife showed up with a few yards of netting, and together we knelt and covered the fireplace with an illusion veil. It looks like a bride. (One of our many theories is that mosquitoes come down chimneys.) I bought a couple of adjustable screens at the hardware store on Third Avenue and they are in place in the windows; but the window sashes in this building are so old and irregular that any mosquito except one suffering from elephantiasis has no difficulty walking into the room through the space between sash and screen. (And then there is the even larger opening between upper sash and lower sash when the lower sash is raised to receive the screen—a space that hardly ever occurs to an apartment dweller but must occur to all mosquitoes.) I also bought a very old air-conditioning machine for twenty-five dollars, a great bargain, and I like this machine. It has almost no effect on the atmosphere of the room, merely chipping the edge off the heat, and it makes a loud grinding noise reminiscent of the subway, so that I can snap off the lights, close my eyes, holding the damp towel at the ready, and imagine, with the first stab, that I am riding in the underground and being pricked by pins wielded by angry girls.

Another theory of mine about the Turtle Bay mosquito is that he is swept into one’s bedroom through the air conditioner, riding the cool indraft as an eagle rides a warm updraft. It is a feeble theory, but a man has to entertain theories if he is to while away the hours of sleeplessness. I wanted to buy some old-fashioned bug spray, and went to the store for that purpose, but when I asked the clerk for a Flit gun and some Flit, he gave me a queer look, as though wondering where I had been keeping myself all these years. “We got something a lot stronger than that,” he said, producing a can of stuff that contained chlordane and several other unmentionable chemicals. I told him I couldn’t use it because I was hypersensitive to chlordane. “Gets me right in the liver,” I said, throwing a wild glance at him.

The mornings are the pleasantest times in the apartment, exhaustion having set in, the sated mosquitoes at rest on ceiling and walls, sleeping it off, the room a swirl of tortured bedclothes and abandoned garments, the vines in their full leafiness filtering the hard light of day, the air conditioner silent at last, like the mosquitoes. From Third Avenue comes the sound of the mad builders—American cicadas, out in the noonday sun. In the garden the sparrow chants—a desultory second courtship, a subdued passion, in keeping with the great heat, love in summertime, relaxed and languorous. I shall miss this apartment when it is gone; we are quitting it come fall, to turn ourselves out to pasture. Every so often I make an attempt to simplify my life, burning my books behind me, selling the occasional chair, discarding the accumulated miscellany. I have noticed, though, that these purifications of mine—to which my wife submits with cautious grace—have usually led to even greater complexity in the long pull, and I have no doubt this one will, too, for I don’t trust myself in a situation of this sort and suspect that my first act as an old horse will be to set to work improving the pasture. I may even join a pasture-improvement society. The last time I tried to purify myself by fire, I managed to acquire a zoo in the process and am still supporting it and carrying heavy pails of water to the animals, a task that is sometimes beyond my strength.


 (选自 An E. B. White Reader, pp. 198~200, New York Harper & Row, 1966


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最后编辑于:2014-10-30 19:38
分类: 英语
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