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可怜的梭罗——读《瓦尔登湖》翻译(139)  

2013-02-25 15:07:47|  分类: 《瓦尔登湖》 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Why should we live with such hurry and waste of life? We are determined to be starved before we are hungry. Men say that a stitch in time saves nine, and so they take a thousand stitches today to save nine tomorrow. As for work, we haven't any of any consequence. We have the Saint Vitus' dance, and cannot possibly keep our heads still. If I should only give a few pulls at the parish bell-rope, as for a fire, that is, without setting the bell, there is hardly a man on his farm in the outskirts of Concord, notwithstanding that press of engagements which was his excuse so many times this morning, nor a boy, nor a woman, I might almost say, but would forsake all and follow that sound, not mainly to save property from the flames, but, if we will confess the truth, much more to see it burn, since burn it must, and we, be it known, did not set it on fire -- or to see it put out, and have a hand in it, if that is done as handsomely; yes, even if it were the parish church itself. Hardly a man takes a half-hour's nap after dinner, but when he wakes he holds up his head and asks, "What's the news?" as if the rest of mankind had stood his sentinels. Some give directions to be waked every half-hour, doubtless for no other purpose; and then, to pay for it, they tell what they have dreamed. After a night's sleep the news is as indispensable as the breakfast. "Pray tell me anything new that has happened to a man anywhere on this globe" -- and he reads it over his coffee and rolls, that a man has had his eyes gouged out this morning on the Wachito River; never dreaming the while that he lives in the dark unfathomed mammoth cave of this world, and has but the rudiment of an eye himself.

(徐迟译)为什么我们应该生活得这样匆忙,这样浪费生命呢?我们下了决心,要在饥饿以前就饿死。人们时常说,及时缝一针,将来可以少缝九针,所以现在他们缝了一千针,只是为了明天少缝九千针。说到工作,任何结果也没有,我们患了跳舞病,连脑袋都无法保住静止。如果在寺院的钟楼下,我刚拉了几下绳子,使钟声发出火警的信号来,钟声还没大响起来,在康科德附近的田园里的人,尽管今天早晨说了多少次他如何如何地忙,没有一个男人,或孩子,或女人,我敢说是会不放下工作而朝着那声音跑来的,主要不是要从火里救出财产来,如果我们说老实话,更多的还是来看火烧的,因为已经烧着了,而且这火,要知道,不是我们放的;或者是来看这场火是怎么被救灭的,要是不费什么劲,也还可以帮忙救救火;就是这样,即使教堂本身着了火也是这样。一个人吃了午饭,还只睡了半个小时的午觉,一醒来就抬起了头,问,“有什么新闻?”好像全人类在为他放哨。有人还下命令,每隔半小时唤醒他一次,无疑的是并不为什么特别的原因:然后,为报答人家起见,他谈了谈他的梦。睡了一夜之后,新闻之不可缺少,正如早饭一样的重要。“请告诉我发生在这个星球之上的任何地方的任何人的新闻,”——于是他一边喝咖啡,吃面包卷,一边读报纸,知道了这天早晨的瓦奇多河上,有一个人的眼睛被挖掉了;一点不在乎他自己就生活在这个世界的深不可测的大黑洞里,自己的眼睛里早就是没有瞳仁的了

1) We are determined to be starved before we are hungry. starve”饥饿的程度比“hungry”严重。梭罗说我们目的是不挨饿,而达到目的的手段竟然是“饿得要死”。为了省将来的九针,现在竟然要缝一千针。

2) a stitch in time saves nine作为谚语译作“小洞不补,大洞吃苦”自然是可以的,但在这里却不合适,因为它要为接下来的“一千针”“省九针”作铺垫,译作“一针及时省九针”就能前后呼应。

3) so they take a thousand stitches today to save nine tomorrow. 这一句的翻译很有趣。徐译“所以现在他们缝了一千针,只是为了明天少缝九千针”;戴译“所以,他们今天缝了一千针,将来可以少缝九千针”;张知遥译“所以他们今天缝了一千针,就省掉了明天的九千针”;穆紫译“因此他们缝了一千针,为的是省却明天的九千针”;王金玲译“所以他们今天缝了一千针,就是为了明天少缝九千针”。诸译者都增加了一个“千”字,可能是受前面谚语“一针及时省九针”的影响,推出“今天一千针,可省明天九千针”。其实,梭罗的意思是为了将来省九针而现在缝一针还是可以的,但这省这九针现在缝一千针却是不划算的。而王译“因而他们今天及时缝上一针,以便省下明天的九针”,竟然又把“千”字给漏掉了。

4) as for a fire, that is, without setting the bell,详注版中Jeffrey Cramery解释得很清楚:Pulling forcefully on a bell rope, hard enough to turn the bell mouth all the way upward with each pull, was known as setting the bell, or ringing high, and was the signal calling people to church. Ringing low, without setting it, sounds the bell faster and was used to give the ?re alarm.

5) The ?sh in Kentucky’s Mammoth Cave are blind and thus have only the ‘‘rudiment of an eye.’’ 在黑暗的洞穴里生活的鱼,由于长期不见光,眼睛看不到东西。梭罗说人也像鱼,不比被剜掉眼睛的好多少。“No one is so blind as those who won’t see.

6) Ken Kifer评说:梭罗认为我们做的大部分劳动都是不必要的。他一周劳动一天就能供给个人需求。(Thoreau felt that most of the work we do is unnecessary. He was able to supply his personal needs by working only about one day per week. )

(戴欢译)为什么我们应该活得如此匆匆忙忙,如此耗费生命呢?我们应当下定决心,趁我们尚未挨饿之前,就去饿死算了。人们常说,及时缝上一针,将来可少缝九针,所以,他们今天缝了一千针,将来可以少缝九千针。至于他们的工作,却是劳而无功的。我们患上了舞蹈病,不能令脑袋停止晃动。

倘若我站在教堂的钟楼下,只拉了几下钟绳,钟发出了火警信号,钟声还不太大。那些康科德镇周边田园的人们,尽管今天早上已反复说过农活如何要紧,可我敢说,每一个男人或是孩子或是女人,都会扔下手中的一切活计而循着钟声赶过来。

他们主要不是从大火中救出些财物,而是,如果我们能承认事实的话,多数人还是想来看看火灾场面的。既然已经着火了,而这火,大伙肯定知道,不是他们放的——他们跑来是想看看怎样灭火的,如果火势不大,也还可以出手帮帮忙;即便教堂失了火,他们也是这般德行。

一个人在享用了午餐之后,倒头睡了半个小时,待他睡醒之后,抬头就会问道:“有些什么新闻?”好像世上其他的人都在为他站岗放哨似的。有些人还会要求别人,每过半个小时叫醒他一次,但也没有其他特别的缘由;醒来之后,为了感谢人家,就讲述了一番梦境。安睡了一夜之后,新闻就是不可或缺的,与早餐一样重要。“请告诉我,任何人在这地球上的任何地方发生了任何怎样的新闻?”——于是他一边喝着咖啡,吃着小圆面包,一边翻阅报纸。结果他知道了,今天早晨在瓦奇多河上,有个男人的眼睛被剜掉了;然而他却做梦也没想到,此刻他就生活在这个世界上的一个深不可测的巨大黑洞中,自己早就是有眼无珠了。

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