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一篇爱情故事的两个版本比较――Appointment with Love和 A Valentine Story  

2010-02-26 07:07:56|  分类: 翻译写作 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

  下载LOFTER 我的照片书  |
 

1. Appointment with Love (By Sulamith Ish-Kishor)

(该题目具体而紧扣故事,以“ A Valentine Story”为题则空泛,无特色)

  Six minutes to six, said the great round clock over the information booth, in Grand Central Station. The tall young army lieutenant who had just come from the direction of the tracks lifted his sunburned face, and his eyes narrowed to note the exact time. His heart was pounding with a beat that shocked him because he could not control it. In six minutes, he would see the woman who had filled such a special place in his life for the past thirteen months, the woman he had never seen, yet whose written words had been with him and sustained him unfailingly.

(“六点差六分”也很具体,然而从全文看,这个具体没有必要,尽管能表达他“分分秒秒”等待。钟表的“圆形”与脸膛的“日晒”也都没必要,只是加重了句子的负担。这段远没有 A Valentine Story简洁。)

  He placed himself as close as he could to the information booth, just beyond the ring of people around the clerks. ...

Lieutenant Blandford remembered one night in particular, the worst of the fighting, when his plane had been caught in the midst of a pack of Zeros. He had seen the grinning face of one of the Japanese pilots.

(过渡有些突兀,即他此时想起了“战斗”是为何?敌机也不必具体到哪种型号。即使要引出下文的谈论恐惧来信,恐惧也不必过于具体。)

  In one of his letters, he had confessed to her that he often felt fear, and only a few days before this battle, he had received her answer: "Of course you fear...all brave men do. Didn't King David know fear? That's why he wrote the Twenty-third Psalm. Next time you doubt yourself, I want you to hear my voice reciting to you: Yea, though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil, for Thou art with me." And he had remembered; he had heard her imagined voice, and it had renewed his strength and skill.

  Now he was going to hear her real voice. Four minutes to six. His face grew sharp.

  Under the immense, starred roof, people were walking fast, like threads of color being woven into a gray web. A girl passed close to him, and Lieutenant Blandford started. She was wearing a red flower in her suit lapel, but it was a crimson sweet pea, not the little red rose they had agreed upon. Besides, this girl was too young, about eighteen, whereas Hollis Meynell had frankly told him she was thirty. "Well, what of it?" he had answered. "I'm thirty-two." He was twenty-nine.(从主题看,这一段似可删去。)

  His mind went back to that book--the book the Lord Himself must have put into his hands out of the hundreds of Army library books sent to the Florida training camp. Of Human Bondage《人性枷锁》, it was; and throughout the book were notes in a woman's writing. He had always hated that writingin habit, but these remarks were different. He had never believed that a woman could see into a man's heart so tenderly, so understandingly. Her name was on the bookplate: Hollis Meynell. He had got hold of a New York City telephone book and found her address. He had written; she had answered. Next day he had left Florida, but they had gone on writing.

  For thirteen months, she had faithfully replied, and more than replied. When his letters did not arrive, she wrote anyway, and now he believed he loved her, and she loved him.

But she had refused every time he asked her to send him her photograph. That seemed rather bad, of course. But she had explained: "If your feeling for me has any reality, any honest basis, what I look like won't matter. Suppose I'm beautiful, I'd always be haunted by the feeling that you had been taking a chance on just that, and that kind of love would disgust me. Suppose I'm plain (and you must admit that this is more likely), then I'd always fear that you were only going on writing to me because you were lonely and had no one else. No, don't ask for my picture. When you come to New York, you shall see me and then you shall make your decision. Remember, both of us are free to stop or to go on after that--whichever we choose. ..."

(这里解释她为何拒绝寄像片,详细似乎是有必要的。有版本简化为一句“She felt that if he really cared, it wouldn't matter what she looked like.”可对比一下哪个好。)

  One minute to six ... he pulled hard on a cigarette.

  Then Lieutenant Blandford's heart leaped higher than his plane had ever done.

 A Valentine Story版本在此处文章用一句“I'll let Mr. Blanchard tell you what happened:”就从第三人称换成了第一人称。以第一人称来讲述中尉眼中的Meynell,讲述自己的内心细腻的感受是非常合适的。)

  A young woman was coming toward him. Her figure was long and slim; her blond hair lay back in curls from her delicate ears. Her eyes were blue as flowers. Her lips and chin had a gentle firmness. In her pale green suit, she was like springtime come alive.

He started toward her, entirely forgetting to notice that she was wearing no rose, and as he moved, an interesting smile curved her lips.

(戴玫瑰花作标识,上文竟没有铺垫--我原来的这话不准确。应该说有铺垫,在我认为可删去的那段里,“not the little red rose they had agreed upon”。只是放的位置没有A Valentine Story版本那么突出: “You'll recognize me,” she wrote, “by the red rose I'll be wearing on my lapel.”

  "Going my way, soldier?" she murmured.

  Uncontrollably, he made one step closer to her. Then he saw Hollis Meynell.

She was standing almost directly behind the girl, a woman well past forty, her graying hair tucked under a worn hat. She was more than plump圆胖的; her thick-ankled feet were thrust into low-heeled shoes. But she wore a red rose in the brown lapel of her coat.

(这里加上这句解说是必要的,方便了读者理解“为什么中尉很确定她就是Hollis Meynell”。没有这句,文章虽含蓄,但读者就要一直疑惑,直到最后一段“she begged me to wear this rose on my coat”处才醒悟。似乎没有保持悬念的必要。)

  The girl in the green suit was walking quickly away.

  Blandford felt as though he were being split in two, so keen was his desire to follow the girl, yet so deep was his longing for the woman whose spirit had truly accompanied and upheld his own; and there she stood. Her pale, plump face was gentle and sensible; he could see that now. Her gray eyes had a warm, kindly twinkle.

Lieutenant Blandford did not hesitate. His fingers gripped the small, worn, blue leather copy of Of Human Bondage which was to identify him to her. This would not be love, but it would be something precious, something perhaps even rarer than love--a friendship for which he had been and must ever be grateful. ...

A Valentine Story版本中,并没有提到书的名字。具体详细到何种程度最恰当?)

  He stood straight, saluted and held the book out toward the woman, although even while he spoke he felt choked by the bitterness of his disappointment.

  "I'm Lieutenant John Blandford, and you--you are Miss Meynell. I'm so glad you could meet me. May--may I take you to dinner?"

(这里两处重复“you--you”和May--may”较形象地写出了上文的“felt choked”)

  The woman's face broadened into a tolerant smile. "I don't know what this is all about, son, "she answered. "That young lady in the green suit, who just went by, she begged me to wear this rose on my coat. And she said that if you asked me to go out with you, I should tell you that she's waiting for you in that big restaurant across the street. She said it was some kind of a test. I've got two boys with Uncle Sam myself, so I didn't mind to oblige的忙 you." 

(结尾处加上这么一句解释,实属多余,它削弱了结尾的力量。 A Valentine Story加上两句总结,既使结尾不突然,又使全文完整。使文章思想高度得到了提升。

从文章结构,段落过度以及结尾等看, A Valentine Story版本更出色应该是很明显的。

(译文)纽约中央火车站询问台上方的大圆钟指着五点五十四分。一位身材修长的陆军中尉刚从铁轨的方向走过来,他抬起晒黑的脸,并瞇起眼睛注意确切的时刻。他的心狂跳不已,让他自己惊异,因为他控制不了自己(的心跳)。再过六分钟,他即将见到的女人过去十三个月来在他的生命中占了如此特殊的地位,他从未见过她,但她书写的文字伴随着他,始终如一地支持着他。    

  他站得尽可能靠近服务台,就在包围着柜台人员的人群之外。…… 

  布兰佛德中尉特别记起一个晚上,在战况最险峻时,他的飞机陷入一群日本零式战斗机之中。他甚至见到了其中一个日本飞行员狞笑的面孔。    

  在寄给她的信中,他向她承认他经常感到害怕,而这一次战役的数天前,他接到她的回信:「当然你会害怕,所有的勇者都会。大卫王难道不知道害怕吗?这就是为什么他写下了诗篇第二十三篇。下次当你心中有疑虑时,我希望你听到我的声音向你朗诵:『我虽然行过死亡的幽谷,也不怕遭害,因为你与我同在。』而他的确记得;他仿佛听到她的声音,而这声音恢复了他的力量和技术。    

  现在他即将听到她真正的声音。差四分六点。他的表情变得机警留意。

  在巨大,满布星斗的屋顶下,穿着各种顏色衣着的行人在灰暗的大厅中往来穿梭,好像彩色的丝线编织入灰色的网中。一个女孩靠近他走过,布兰佛德中尉吃惊地动了一下。在她外套的翻领上别了一朵红色的花,但它是深红色的香豌豆花,而非他们所约定的小红玫瑰。此外,这女孩太年轻了,大约十八岁,而荷莉丝?梅奈尔曾坦白地告诉他她已叁十岁。「嗯,那又怎么?」他回答道:「我叁十二岁了。」实际上他二十九岁。    

  他回想起那本书--那必定是上帝从陆军图书馆运至佛罗里达州训练营的数百本图书中挑选出来并亲自交给他的一本书。它是《人性枷锁》;而整本书中有女人的笔迹所写的注解。他一向很讨厌那种在书上写眉批的习惯,但这些注解不同。他从未想到一个女人能如此温柔又善解人意地透视男人的心。她的名字在藏书票上:荷莉丝?梅奈尔。他找到了一本纽约的电话簿,得知她的住址。他写信给她;她也回信了。不久,他被遣送海外,但他们继续书信往返。    

  有十三个月之久,她忠实地回信,同时不只是回信。当他的信没有寄到,她仍主动去信;现在他相信他爱她,而她也爱他。

  但是她拒绝了所有请她寄相片给他的恳求。当然,这似乎很糟。但她解释道:「如果你对我的感情是真的、是诚实的,那我长得什么样子都无所谓。假设我长得漂亮,我会永远耿耿于怀,觉得你就是碰碰运气,认为我可能长得不错,而那样(注重外表)的爱情会让我觉得厌恶。假设我长得很普通(而你得承认这个可能性更大),那我会一直疑虑你继续写信给我只是因为你寂寞又没有任何其他的对象。不,不要要我的相片。当你到纽约,你可以来看我,然后做决定。记住,见面之后,我们彼此都可自由决定要停止或继续交往--不管我们选择何者……。」    

  六点差一分他用力吸了一口烟。

  这时布兰佛德中尉的心跳得比他的飞机还高。

  一位年轻女士向他走来。她的身材修长纤细;她的金发从她细致的耳朵卷曲地垂下来。她的眼睛蓝的像花朵。她的唇与颚温柔而坚毅。穿着粉绿色的套装,她好像春天的化身。    

  他走向她,完全忘了注意她没有佩戴红玫瑰;当他移动时,她的嘴唇微微卷曲形成一个挑逗的微笑。

  「跟我同路吗,阿兵哥?」她低语。

  无法控制地,他又向她走近了一步。这时他看到了荷莉丝?梅奈尔。

  她几乎就站在女孩的后面,一个四十好几的妇人,她的灰发塞进一顶破旧的帽子内。她相当胖;丰满多肉的脚挤进低跟的鞋子内。但她外套皱皱的棕色翻领上戴了一朵红玫瑰。    

  穿着绿色套装的女孩很快地走掉了。

  布兰佛德感觉他被撕裂成两半,他想要跟随女孩的欲望如此之强,但他对这位妇人的精神曾真正陪伴并支持他的渴望却又如此之深;而她就站在那裡。她平淡、丰满的面容是温柔而明智的;他可以看出这点。她灰色的眼睛散发出温暖、亲切的光辉。    

  布兰佛德中尉没有犹豫。他的手指抓住小而破旧,蓝皮封面的《人性枷锁》,这是用来让她辨认他的。这不会是爱,但它会是某种宝贵的,也许比爱更难得的一种友谊--他曾为此也必永远会为此而心怀感激的。    

  他向这位女士立正,敬礼并把书拿出来,尽管当他说话时他感觉因失望的苦涩而结巴。

  「我是约翰?布兰佛德中尉,而你--你是梅奈尔小姐。我很高与你能来见我。我可以--我可以请你吃晚餐吗?」

这位女士的脸展开一个宽容的微笑。「我不知道这是怎么一回事,孩子,」她回答:「那位刚刚走过,穿着绿色套装的年轻女士,她央求我把这朵玫瑰戴在我的外套上。她说如果你要求我跟你一道出去,我应当告诉你她正在对街的大饭店等你。她说这是某种考验。我自己就有两个儿子在美国政府做事,因此不介意帮你们这个忙。

 2.  A Valentine Story (Doug Bell)

John Blanchard stood up from the bench, straightened his Army uniform, and studied the crowd of people making their way through Grand Central Station.

      He looked for the girl whose heart he knew, but whose face he didn't, the girl with the rose. His interest in her had begun twelve months before in a Florida library. Taking a book off the shelf he soon found himself absorbed, not by the words of the book, but by the notes penciled in the margin. The soft handwriting reflected a thoughtful soul and insightful mind.

     In the front of the book, he discovered the previous owner 's name, Miss Hollis Maynell. With time and effort he located her address. She lived in New York City. He wrote her a letter introducing himself and inviting her to correspond. The next day he was shipped overseas for service in World War II.

     During the next year the two grew to know each other through the mail. Each letter was a seed falling on a fertile heart. A romance was budding. Blanchard requested a photograph, but she refused. She explained:" If your feeling for me has any reality, any honest basis, what I look like won't matter. Suppose I 'm beautiful. I 'd always be haunted by the feeling that you had been taking a chance on just that, and that kind of love would disgust me. Suppose I 'm plain (and you must admit that this is more likely). Then I 'd always fear that you were going on writing to me only because you were lonely and had no one else. No, don't ask for my picture. When you come to New York, you shall see me and then you shall make your decision. Remember, both of us are free to stop or to go on after that—whichever we choose … "

     When the day finally came for him to return from Europe, they scheduled their first meeting—7: 00 p.m. at Grand Central Station, New York.

     “You'll recognize me,” she wrote, “by the red rose I'll be wearing on my lapel.” So, at 7: 00 p.m. he was in the station looking for a girl who had filled such a special place in his life for the past 12 months, a girl he had never seen, yet whose written words had been with him and sustained him unfailingly.  

     I'll let Mr. Blanchard tell you what happened:

     A young woman was coming toward me, her figure long and slimHer golden hair lay back in curls from her delicate  ears; her eyes were blue as flowers. Her lips and chin had a gentle firmness, and in her pale green suit she was like springtime come alive.

     I started toward her, entirely forgetting to notice that she was not wearing a rose.

     As I moved, a small, provocative smile curved her lips. “Going my way, sailor?" she murmured. Almost uncontrollably I made one step closer to her, and then I saw Hollis Maynell. She was standing almost directly behind the girl. A woman well past 40, she had graying hair pinned up under a worn hat.  She was more than a little overweight, her thick-ankled feet thrust into low-heeled shoes.

    The girl in the green suit was walking quickly away. I felt as though I was split in two, so keen was my desire to follow her, and yet so deep was my longing for the woman whose spirit had truly companioned me and upheld my own.

   And there she stood. Her pale, round face was gentle and sensible , her gray eyes had a warm and kindly glow . I did not hesitate .

   My fingers gripped the small worn blue leather copy of the book that was to identify me to her. This would not be love, but it would be something precious, something perhaps even better than love, a friendship for which I had been and must ever be grateful .

   I squared my shoulders and saluted and held out the book to the woman, even though while I spoke I felt choked by the bitterness of my disappointment. “I 'm Lieutenant John Blanchard, and you must be Miss Maynell. I am so glad you could meet me; may I take you to dinner?”

   The woman 's face broadened into a smile. “I don't know what this is about, son,” she answered, “but the young lady in the green suit who just went by, she begged me to wear this rose on my coat. And she said if you were to ask me out to dinner, I should go and tell you that she is waiting for you in the big restaurant across the street. She said it was some kind of test!”

   It's not difficult to understand and admire Miss Maynell 's wisdom. The true nature of a heart is seen in its response to the unattractive.

   “Tell me whom you love," Houssaye wrote, “and I will tell you who you are.”  

(译文)爱情故事(A VALENTINE STORY) --道格·贝尔

约翰·布兰查德从长凳上站起身来,整了整军装,留意着格兰德中央车站进出的人群。、

    他在寻找一位姑娘,一位佩带玫瑰的姑娘。他知其心,但不知其貌。十二个月前,在佛罗里达州的一个图书馆,他对她产生了兴趣。他从书架上取下——本书,很快便被吸引住了,不是被书的内容,而是被铅笔写的眉批。柔和的笔迹显示出其人多思善虑的心灵和富有洞察力的头脑。

    在书的前页,他找到了前一位拥有人的姓名,霍利斯·梅奈尔小姐。他花了一番工夫和努力,找到了她的地址。她住在纽约市。他给她写了一封信介绍自己,并请她回复。第二天他被运往海外,参加第二次世界大战。

    在接下来的一年当中,两人通过信件来往增进了了解。每—封信都如一颗种子撒入肥沃的心灵之土。浪漫的爱情之花就要绽开。布兰查德提出要一张照片,可她拒绝了。她解释道:“如果你对我的感情是真实的,是诚心诚意的,那我的相貌如何并不重要。设想我美丽动人。我将会一直深感不安,惟恐你只是因为我的容貌就贸然与我相爱,而这种爱情令我憎恶。设想本人相貌平平 ( 你得承认,这种可能性更大 ) 。那我一直会担心,你和我保持通信仅仅是出于孤独寂寞,无人交谈。不,别索要照片。等你到了纽约,你会见到我,到时你可再作定夺。且记,见面后我俩都可以自由决定中止关系或继续交往——无论你怎么选择 … ”

    他从欧洲回国的日子终于到了。他们安排了两人的第一次见面——晚上七点,纽约格兰德中央车站。

   “你会认出我的,”她写道,“我会在衣襟上戴——朵红玫瑰。”于是,晚上七点,他候在车站,寻找—位过去—年里在自己生活中占据了如此特殊地位的姑娘,一位素未谋面,但其文字伴随着他、始终支撑着他精神的姑娘。

    且让布兰查德先生告诉你接下来发生的事吧:

    —位年轻的姑娘向我走来,她身材颀长纤细。一头卷曲的金发披在秀美的耳后;眼睛碧蓝,如花似玉。她的双唇和下颌线条柔和,却又柔中见刚,她身穿浅绿色套装,犹如春天一般生气盎然。

    我朝她走去,完全忘了去看她有没有戴玫瑰花。

   我走过去时,她双唇绽开撩人的微笑。“和我同路吗,水兵 ? ”她小声问道。我情不自禁,再向她走近一步。可就在这时,我看到了霍利斯·梅奈尔。她差不多就站在姑娘的正后面,早已年过四十,灰白的头发用卡子向上别着,头上带着一顶旧帽子。

    她体态臃肿,粗圆的脚髁上套着一双低跟鞋。

    穿着绿色套装的姑娘快步走开了。我觉得自己好像被分成了两半,——方面热切地想去追赶她,但另一方面我又渴望那一位以其心灵真诚陪伴我并成为我的精神支柱的女人。

    她站在那儿,苍白的圆脸显得温柔理智,灰色的眼睛透出热情善良。我没有迟疑。

    我手里紧握着那本小小的让她辨认我的蓝色羊皮面旧书。这不会是爱情,但将是某种珍贵的、或许比爱情更美妙的东西,一种我曾经感激,并将永远感激的友情。

    我挺胸站立,敬了个礼,并举起手中的书好让那位女士看。不过在我开口说话的时候,失望的痛苦几乎使我哽咽。“我是约翰·布兰查德中尉,想必您就是梅奈尔小姐。很高兴您来见我。可否请您赏光吃饭 ? ”

    妇女的脸上绽开了笑容。“我不知道是怎么回事,孩子,”她回答说,“可是刚才走过去的那位穿绿色套装的姑娘,她央求我把这支玫瑰插在衣服上。她还说,要是你请我吃饭的话,我就告诉你,她就在街对面那个大饭店里等你。她说这是一种考验 ! ”

    梅奈尔小姐的智慧不难理解,也令人称奇。心灵的本质是从其对不美的事物的态度中反映出来的。

    “告诉我你所爱者是谁,”何赛写道,“我就知道你是什么样的人。”
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