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飞箱2

2006-02-28 00:00

  The Flying Trunk<2>

  Hans Christian Andersen(1838)

  “'Yes, of course,' said the matches, 'let us talk about those who are the highest born.' ”'No, I don't like to be always talking of what we are,' remarked the saucepan; 'let us think of some other amusement; I will begin. We will tell something that has happened to ourselves; that will be very easy, and interesting as well. On the Baltic Sea, near the Danish shore'—

  “'What a pretty commencement!' said the plates; 'we shall all like that story, I am sure.'”'Yes; well in my youth, I lived in a quiet family, where the furniture was polished, the floors scoured, and clean curtains put up every fortnight,' “'What an interesting way you have of relating a story,' said the carpet-broom; 'it is easy to perceive that you have been a great deal in women's society, there is something so pure runs through what you say.'”'That is quite true,' said the water-bucket; and he made a spring with joy, and splashed some water on the floor.

  “Then the saucepan went on with his story, and the end was as good as the beginning. ”The plates rattled with pleasure, and the carpet-broom brought some green parsley out of the dust-hole and crowned the saucepan, for he knew it would vex the others; and he thought, 'If I crown him to-day he will crown me to-morrow.'

  “'Now, let us have a dance,' said the fire-tongs; and then how they danced and stuck up one leg in the air. The chair-cushion in the corner burst with laughter when she saw it. ”'Shall I be crowned now?' asked the fire-tongs; so the broom found another wreath for the tongs. “'They were only common people after all,' thought the matches. The tea-urn was now asked to sing, but she said she had a cold, and could not sing without boiling heat. They all thought this was affectation, and because she did not wish to sing excepting in the parlor, when on the table with the grand people.

  “In the window sat an old quill-pen, with which the maid generally wrote. There was nothing remarkable about the pen, excepting that it had been dipped too deeply in the ink, but it was proud of that. ”'If the tea-urn won't sing,' said the pen, 'she can leave it alone; there is a nightingale in a cage who can sing; she has not been taught much, certainly, but we need not say anything this evening about that.'

  “'I think it highly improper,' said the tea-kettle, who was kitchen singer, and half-brother to the tea-urn, 'that a rich foreign bird should be listened to here. Is it patriotic? Let the market-basket decide what is right.'

  “'I certainly am vexed,' said the basket; 'inwardly vexed, more than any one can imagine. Are we spending the evening properly? Would it not be more sensible to put the house in order? If each were in his own place I would lead a game; this would be quite another thing.'

  “'Let us act a play,' said they all. At the same moment the door opened, and the maid came in. Then not one stirred; they all remained quite still; yet, at the same time, there was not a single pot amongst them who had not a high opinion of himself, and of what he could do if he chose. ”'Yes, if we had chosen,' they each thought, 'we might have spent a very pleasant evening.'

  “The maid took the matches and lighted them; dear me, how they sputtered and blazed up! ”'Now then,' they thought, 'every one will see that we are the first. How we shine; what a light we give!' Even while they spoke their light went out.

  “What a capital story,” said the queen, “I feel as if I were really in the kitchen, and could see the matches; yes, you shall marry our daughter.” “Certainly,” said the king, “thou salt have our daughter.” The king said thou to him because he was going to be one of the family. The wedding-day was fixed, and, on the evening before, the whole city was illuminated. Cakes and sweetmeats were thrown among the people. The street boys stood on tiptoe and shouted “hurrah,” and whistled between their fingers; altogether it was a very splendid affair.

  “I will give them another treat,” said the merchant's son. So he went and bought rockets and crackers, and all sorts of fire-works that could be thought of, packed them in his trunk, and flew up with it into the air. What a whizzing and popping they made as they went off! The Turks, when they saw such a sight in the air, jumped so high that their slippers flew about their ears. It was easy to believe after this that the princess was really going to marry a Turkish angel.

  As soon as the merchant's son had come down in his flying trunk to the wood after the fireworks, he thought, “I will go back into the town now, and hear what they think of the entertainment.” It was very natural that he should wish to know. And what strange things people did say, to be sure! every one whom he questioned had a different tale to tell, though they all thought it very beautiful.

  “I saw the Turkish angel myself,” said one; “he had eyes like glittering stars, and a head like foaming water.” “He flew in a mantle of fire,” cried another, “and lovely little cherubs peeped out from the folds.”

  He heard many more fine things about himself, and that the next day he was to be married. After this he went back to the forest to rest himself in his trunk. It had disappeared! A spark from the fireworks which remained had set it on fire; it was burnt to ashes! So the merchant's son could not fly any more, nor go to meet his bride. She stood all day on the roof waiting for him, and most likely she is waiting there still; while he wanders through the world telling fairy tales, but none of them so amusing as the one he related about the matches.

  I. Reference Version (参考译文)

  “对,我们还是来研究一下谁是最高贵的吧?”柴火说。“不,我不喜欢谈论我自己!”罐子说。“我们还是来开一个晚会吧!我来开始。我来讲一个大家经历过的故事,这样大家就可以欣赏它——这是很愉快的。在波罗的海边,在丹麦的山毛榉树林边——”

  “这是一个很美丽的开端!”所有的盘子一起说。“这的确是我所喜欢的故事!”“是的,我就在那儿一个安静的家庭里度过我的童年。家具都擦得很亮,地板洗得很干净,窗帘每半月换一次。”“你讲故事的方式真有趣!”鸡毛帚说。“人们一听就知道,这是一个女人在讲故事。整个故事中充满了一种清洁的味道。”“是的,人们可以感觉到这一点”水罐子说。她一时高兴,就跳了一下,把水洒了一地板。

  罐子继续讲故事。故事的结尾跟开头一样好。所有的盘子都快乐得闹起来。鸡毛帚从一个沙洞里带来一根绿芹菜,把它当做一个花冠戴在罐子头上。他知道这会使别人讨厌。“我今天为她戴上花冠,”他想,“她明天也就会为我戴上花冠的。”

  “现在我要跳舞了,”火钳说,于是就跳起来。天啦!这婆娘居然也能翘起一只腿来!墙角里的那个旧椅套子也裂开来看它跳舞。“我也能戴上花冠吗?”火钳说。果然不错,她得到了一个花冠。“这是一群乌合之众!”柴火想。现在茶壶开始唱起歌来。但是她说她伤了风,除非她在沸腾,否则就不能唱。但这不过是装模作样罢了:她除非在主人面前,站在桌子上,她是不愿意唱的。

  老鹅毛笔坐在桌子边——女佣人常常用它来写字:这支笔并没有什么了不起的地方,他只是常被深插在墨水瓶之中,但他对于这点却感到非常骄傲。“如果茶壶不愿意唱,”他说,“那么就去她的吧!外边挂着的笼子里有一只夜莺——他唱得蛮好,他没有受过任何教育,不过我们今晚可以不提这件事情。”“我觉得,”茶壶说——“他是厨房的歌手,同时也是茶壶的异母兄弟——我们要听这样一只外国鸟唱歌是非常不对的。这算是爱国吗?让上街的菜篮来评判一下吧?”

  “我有点烦恼,”菜篮说。“谁也想象不到我内心里是多么烦恼!这能算得上是晚上的消遣吗?把我们这个家整顿整顿一下岂不是更好吗?请大家各归原位,让我来布置整个的游戏吧。这样,事情才会改变!”“是的,我们来闹一下吧!”大家齐声说。

  正在这时候,门开了。女佣人走进来了,大家都静静地站着不动,谁也不敢说半句话。不过在他们当中,没有哪一只壶不是满以为自己有一套办法,自己是多么高贵。“只要我愿意,”每一位都是这样想,“这一晚可以变得很愉快!”

  女佣人拿起柴火,点起一把火。天啦!火烧得多么响!多么亮啊!“现在每个人都可以看到,”他们想,“我们是头等人物。我们照得多么亮!我们的光是多么大啊!”——于是他们就都烧完了。

  “这是一个出色的故事!”王后说。“我觉得自己好像就在厨房里,跟柴火在一道。是的,我们可以把女儿嫁给你了。”“是的,当然!”国王说,“你在星期一就跟我们的女儿结婚吧。”他们用“你”来称呼他,因为他现在是属于他们一家的了。(注:按照外国人的习惯,对于亲近的人用“你”而不是用“您”来称呼。)

  举行婚礼的日子已经确定了。在结婚的头天晚上,全城都大放光明。饼干和点心都随便在街上散发给群众。小孩子用脚尖站着,高声喊“万岁!”同时用手指吹起口哨来。真是非常热闹。“是的,我也应该让大家快乐一下才对!”商人的儿子想。因此他买了些焰火和炮竹,以及种种可以想象得到的鞭炮。他把这些东西装进箱子里,于是向空中飞去。“啪!”放得多好!放得多响啊!所有的土耳奇人一听见就跳起来,弄得他们的拖鞋都飞到耳朵旁边去了。他们从来没有看见过这样的火球。他们现在知道了,要跟公主结婚的人就是土耳奇的神。

  商人的儿子坐着飞箱又落到森林里去,他马上想,“我现在要到城里去一趟,看看这究竟产生了什么效果。”他有这样一个愿望,当然也是很自然的。嗨,老百姓讲的话才多哩!他所问到的每一个人都有自己的一套故事。不过大家都觉得那是很美的。

  “我亲眼看到那位土耳奇的神,”一个说:“他的眼睛像一对发光的星星,他的胡须像起泡沫的水!”“他穿着一件火外套飞行,”另外一个说:“许多最美丽的天使藏在他的衣褶里向外窥望。”

  是的,他所听到的都是最美妙的传说。在第二天他就要结婚了。他现在回到森林里来,想坐进他的箱子里去。不过箱子到哪儿去了呢?箱子被烧掉了。焰火的一颗火星落下来,点起了一把火。箱子已经化成灰烬了。他再也飞不起来了。也没有办法到他的新娘子那儿去。她在屋顶上等待了一整天。她现在还在那儿等待着哩。而他呢,他在这个茫茫的世界里跑来跑去讲儿童故事;不过这些故事再也不像他所讲的那个“柴火的故事”一样有趣。

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