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英文翻譯練習:遠人《秋山行》(2)
撰文者: Wayne 發表日期: March 29, 2009 – 1:21 pm

本文看似記遊,實則描寫作者送朋友骨灰上山安置的過程,可算是生命之遊。文中寫景精采,「送葬」時的回思與哲思展現難得的包容,殊屬不易,本文獲得梁實秋散文佳作獎乃實至名歸。作者還引用英國詩人Christina Rossetti 的 Up-Hill 以及丁尼生的 Crossing the Bar,中西合壁,文白交融,極富深意。作者每節末尾都刻意與 Up-Hill 詩中每節的末尾相互應和,應驗了前人所謂:同一個敏感的靈魂在不同的軀殼裏忍受同樣的悽楚與哀痛。文學無國界之分,對死亡的體悟是歷代哲人追尋的目標。誠如作者所言:「世事難斷,何為愚痴,何為通達,恐怕也沒有定論。」此話頗值得玩味。

本文取自:遠人之《也想不幽默》,第 195 頁到 208 頁。

(版主執筆翻譯中文 / 漢學家 Professor John Balcom 校訂)

 


夜裡可有地方睡覺?
天黑下來就有旅店。
也許在黑暗中找不到?
你不會看不見。

3
But is there for the night a resting-place?
A roof for when the slow dark hours begin.
May not the darkness hide it from my face?
You cannot miss that inn.

秋色是最多變的。巔峰不過幾天。有時去得早,夏天的綠意還沒褪盡,只有少數特別性急的樹,已經通體透金,格外搶眼,不由人不一株株細看。有時候去得巧,紅橙黃紫,排闥而來,簡直目不暇接,只得借重一泓平湖,與秋山隔水對坐,在鏡上倒讀那一幅亂針密刺的錦繡。有時天高日麗,在林子裡漫步,頂上各色葉片鮮亮透明,直要溶進那深遠清澈的藍色蒼穹。有時冷雨橫斜,葉色反趨濃豔,同雨水浸成墨黑的枝幹相對,富於怪趣。而這次,可真是來遲了。

translation Autumn changes its face frequently. It remains at its peak for only a few days.  Before autumn reaches its peak, sometimes summer green does not completely fade. Only certain impatient trees have turned bright gold, each of them outshining the others to catch one’s attention. When autumn is right at its peak, the fall colors-red, orange, yellow, and purple-will jump out and keep one’s eyes fully occupied. To fully enjoy such wonderful autumn scenery, I used to observe autumn mountains across a broad and placid lake in order to enjoy their beautiful and neatly embroidered reflections in the lake’s mirror-like smoothness. Sometimes I stroll around in the woods under the bright sun and the high autumn sky. The overhead foliage of diverse colors, so fresh and transparent, seems to merge into the deep, blue, and clear expanse of sky. At other times, the autumn foliage was darkened amidst a cold drizzling rain, presenting an eerie but interesting contrast to the branches darkened and soaked with the rain. Unfortunately, we were late this time and missed the peak. 

 

樹葉已經脫落過半,那未落的,也已失去了水分,格外輕薄,在秋風裏不住地抖動。樹葉既疏,山就露出了本來的面目。遠處看不真切,只顯得比夏天蒼老,但不見圓滑,反倒更見稜角。近處更露骨,每座山都像是一整塊石頭削出來的,很像是國畫中的某一流派,只是色呈古銅,越顯遒勁。山腳經修路時的一番炸砍,林木已少,因此樹都遠遠站在高處,嚴整筆挺,像是在等人檢閱似的,其實車行如矢,誰也不會多看幾眼。心情不同,有時候植物看起來也很荒唐的。

translation Over half of the leaves had fallen from the trees. The remaining dry leaves, brittle and light, were trembling in the autumn wind. In addition, the real faces of mountains, with a spare covering of leaves, were unveiled at last. Looking in the distance, I felt that the autumn mountains looked older than they did in summer. They had lost their smoothness, but their roughness had become more conspicuous than at any other time of the year. In the short distance, every mountain seemed to have been chipped out of a single rock, which reminded me of a certain school of traditional Chinese painting. The only difference was the mountains looked relatively more vigorous due to their bronze-colored appearance. Most of the trees at the foot of the mountains had been mowed down for building the road, with only a few left. As a result, all the remaining trees were at high places far away from the road, standing straight as a ramrod and in neat formation as if waiting to be reviewed. In fact, people drove by at very high speeds, not paying any attention to them. Sometimes I feel, with a change of mind, that trees are absurd, too.

 

這條路沿著一個小山谷蜿蜒而上,我們在右,左面的峭壁隔著適當的距離,反而現出了全貌,連岩石的肌理都歷歷如繪。有隻老鷹在天上盤旋。善飛的鳥都不輕易揮動翅膀,老鷹翼展特長,飛起來只是如如不動,隨著氣流浮沈,久久不棲。這一帶老鷹不少,以前每次看見,都要想起丁尼生的那首《鷹》,特別是起句的擬聲法,恨不得那鷹就落在面前,好聽聽「牠彎曲的指爪緊摳著岩壁」的喀喀聲。可是境隨心轉,此刻想到的竟是西藏的天葬,不知以死後的肉體布施給梟獍之流的蠢物,究竟是慈悲,還是愚癡?又想到這不幸墮入畜生道的有情眾生,既無靈性可以參究佛理,不知是否還有緣轉化,更不知深信輪迴之說的炳公可曾超脫了生死流轉?

translation The road wound up along a small valley. I drove on the right side, maintaining a proper distance from the mountain cliffs. Unexpectedly, I could see the real face of the mountain, even the texture of the rocks in it. An eagle wheeled in the sky. It is said that birds good at flight seldom flap their wings while flying, which seems to be true. The eagle, while stretching it wings widely and hovering in the air current, seldom beat its wings but was able to stay in the air for a long, long time. Eagles were said to be abundant in the area. Every time I pass through the area, I think of the poem The Eagle by Alfred Tennyson. The alliteration in the first line is what I like best. I wish the eagle could land right in front of me so that I could hear clearly the crack made by its claws, the way ‘he clasps the crag with crooked hands’. However, this time my thoughts turned to ‘Sky Burials’ in Tibet, instead of the poem. I asked myself, ” Is it benevolent or stupid to give a dead man’s body to stupid birds? The birds are so unlucky to have fallen into ‘the path of the animals’ so they lack the wisdom to seek the Buddhist truth. Do they have a chance to change paths? Also, has Bingwen succeeded in transcending the process of transmigration that he firmly believed in ?”     

     
炳公過去之後的一天夜裹,我在燈下獨坐,披覽他的修學日記。他秉性內斂,語不及私,了解他並不容易。我在他身後有緣拜讀他的日記,反覺得是在同他進行一次前所未有的深談,從而認識了他由宗儒轉而學佛的思想變化。當讀到他終於得遇良師,決心以對人類的終極關懷做為一生追求的目標時寫下的「懸崖撒手,自肯承擔」兩句,不禁大為震動。這本是佛家常說的話,可是聞之於炳公,分量格外不同,字字都像擂在胸口,砰然有聲。因為後來他以實踐證明,此意既決,就生死以之,絕無反顧。

translation One night after Bingwen passed away, I sat under a lamp and read his cultivation diary. It was not easy to get to know him because he was reserved and seldom talked about himself. Reading his diary provided me with a good opportunity to engage in a deep dialogue with him that we had never had. From his notes, I came to realize why he had chosen to convert from Confucianism to Buddhism. When he finally met a master and determined to dedicate his whole life to the promotion of the welfare of mankind, he wrote the following words, ” I am willing to take full responsibility for myself, even if I jump off the cliff.” Although it was pretty common in sutras, the quote, when cited by Bingwen, was very persuasive and moving, every word hitting me heavily right in the chest. After making up his mind, Bingwen carried on regardless and demonstrated his determination by putting his words into practice, even at the expense of his life.           

 

他的病來勢極猛,由腳底向上萎縮,大約兩月失去一肢,最後及於胸腹,終於致命。像這樣眼看著自己的肉體剋日赴死,真是人間慘事,但他始終保持平靜,渾似置身事外。我覺得他真是強者,也真是忍人。有次我按捺不住,貿然問他:這麻痺之症不知和長年打坐有沒有關係?他未經思索地回答:非常可能。語氣竟是那樣平和,無怨無悔。又彷彿雖然來日無多,卻自知去處。我承他指點,也略讀佛書,認識到其中確實有大智慧,但對於神通輪迴等說法,完全扞格不入。他說這是所知障,我不能同意。但願我非他是,如今他已經暗路走盡,看見了光明的歸宿。

translation Bingwen’s illness was serious. His muscles, starting from the soles of his feet, gradually weakened, and the trend spread to the other parts quickly. One of his legs was amputated at two-month intervals. The illness finally spread to his chest and killed him. It was a tragedy for him to watch his body gradually ‘die’ in this way and to sense his approaching death. However, he faced death with perfect equanimity, seemly unconcerned about it at all. In my eyes, Bingwen was truly strong-willed and able to endure great pain, too. One day I lost control of my intense curiosity and asked him abruptly, ” Is it possible that the illness was caused by your long years of sitting in meditation?” He answered immediately, “Quite possible!” I was surprised at the way he answered me–so calmly and without any complaints or regrets. Although his days were numbered, he still had peace of mind because he knew where he would go after death. With his guidance, I learned something about Buddhism. I also believed one could find much wisdom in sutras, but I didn’t know why I was just not able to grasp the concepts of supernatural power, transmigration and the like. He told me I was ‘hindered by worldly knowledge’, which I totally disagreed with. I hope I am wrong and he is right. At the moment, Bingwen has already finished his journey in the darkness and cannot miss his home of brightness.

 

《秋山行》第一部分的譯文,請參閱:『英文翻譯練習:遠人《秋山行》(1)』。
《秋山行》第三部分的譯文,請參閱:『英文翻譯練習:遠人《秋山行》(3)』。
《秋山行》第四部分的譯文,請參閱:『英文翻譯練習:遠人《秋山行》(4)』。  

 

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