主题:Andrew Marr:我们英国人——英国诗歌文学简史 -- 万年看客

2020-03-03 01:48:36万年看客
革命4

苏格兰的爱国者们肯定会主张英伦三岛上再没有像彭斯这样的诗人,这话说得固然不错。但是在英国的南端还有另一位诗人风格与彭斯非常相似,而且同样密切关注农村生活的现实,同样关注细节,同样抱有深厚的同情心。约翰.克莱尔是北汉普顿郡一位农夫的儿子,彭斯去世那年他只有三岁。但是彭斯在埃尔郡的务农生活总体而言还算安稳,而克莱尔却亲眼见证了圈地运动的后果。就在他的眼前,英格兰东部千百年来郁郁葱葱的森林与鱼鳞状片片拼合的小块耕地被圈地运动扫荡一空,留下了一片方正死板的粮食工厂。彭斯与克莱尔生前都没能真正体验过工业化生活或者新兴城市化生活,尽管彭斯大半辈子都待在文化气息浓厚的爱丁堡肮脏老城区,而克莱尔则在临终前几年被关进了北汉普顿郡的精神病院。因此从这一层上来说两人都是工业革命的边线旁观者。克莱尔并不像彭斯那样激进,但是他对于农业革命后果的悲叹使得他成为了当代环保主义者与生态主义者们的主保圣人。环保活动家乔治.蒙比奥特甚至主张要将克莱尔的诞辰7月13日确立为“克莱尔日”,部分原因在于他的《夜莺巢》(The Nightingale's Nest)一诗实在写得太好了。这是一首事无巨细的长诗,不过事无巨细正是关键所在。除非某人很清楚究竟失去了什么,否则就不要大言不惭地鼓吹进步的必然代价。而要想知道自己失去了什么,就必须仔细观察:

Up this green woodland-ride let’s softly rove,

And list the nightingale - she dwells just here.

Hush ! let the wood-gate softly clap, for fear

The noise might drive her from her home of love;

For here I’ve heard her many a merry year -

At morn, at eve, nay, all the live-long day,

As though she lived on song. This very spot,

Just where that old-man’s-beard all wildly trails

Rude arbours o’er the road, and stops the way -

And where that child its blue-bell flowers hath got,

Laughing and creeping through the mossy rails -

There have I hunted like a very boy,

Creeping on hands and knees through matted thorn

To find her nest, and see her feed her young.

And vainly did I many hours employ:

All seemed as hidden as a thought unborn.

And where those crimping fern-leaves ramp among

The hazel’s under boughs, I’ve nestled down,

And watched her while she sung; and her renown

Hath made me marvel that so famed a bird

Should have no better dress than russet brown.

Her wings would tremble in her ecstasy,

And feathers stand on end, as ’twere with joy,

And mouth wide open to release her heart

Of its out-sobbing songs. The happiest part

Of summer’s fame she shared, for so to me

Did happy fancies shapen her employ;

But if I touched a bush, or scarcely stirred,

All in a moment stopt. I watched in vain:

The timid bird had left the hazel bush,

And at a distance hid to sing again.

Lost in a wilderness of listening leaves,

Rich Ecstasy would pour its luscious strain,

Till envy spurred the emulating thrush

To start less wild and scarce inferior songs;

For while of half the year Care him bereaves,

To damp the ardour of his speckled breast;

The nightingale to summer’s life belongs,

And naked trees, and winter’s nipping wrongs,

Are strangers to her music and her rest.

Her joys are evergreen, her world is wide -

Hark! there she is as usual - let’s be hush -

For in this black-thorn clump, if rightly guest,

Her curious house is hidden. Part aside

These hazel branches in a gentle way,

And stoop right cautious ’neath the rustling boughs,

For we will have another search to day,

And hunt this fern-strewn thorn-clump round and round;

And where this reeded wood-grass idly bows,

We’ll wade right through, it is a likely nook:

In such like spots, and often on the ground,

They’ll build, where rude boys never think to look -

Aye, as I live ! her secret nest is here,

Upon this white-thorn stump ! I’ve searched about

For hours in vain. There! put that bramble by -

Nay, trample on its branches and get near.

How subtle is the bird ! she started out,

And raised a plaintive note of danger nigh,

Ere we were past the brambles; and now, near

Her nest, she sudden stops - as choking fear,

That might betray her home. So even now

We’ll leave it as we found it: safety’s guard

Of pathless solitudes shall keep it still.

See there! she’s sitting on the old oak bough,

Mute in her fears; our presence doth retard

Her joys, and doubt turns every rapture chill.

Sing on, sweet bird! may no worse hap befall

Thy visions, than the fear that now deceives.

We will not plunder music of its dower,

Nor turn this spot of happiness to thrall;

For melody seems hid in every flower,

That blossoms near thy home. These harebells all

Seem bowing with the beautiful in song;

And gaping cuckoo-flower, with spotted leaves,

Seems blushing of the singing it has heard.

How curious is the nest; no other bird

Uses such loose materials, or weaves

Its dwelling in such spots: dead oaken leaves

Are placed without, and velvet moss within,

And little scraps of grass, and, scant and spare,

What scarcely seem materials, down and hair;

For from men’s haunts she nothing seems to win.

Yet Nature is the builder, and contrives

Homes for her children’s comfort, even here;

Where Solitude’s disciples spend their lives

Unseen, save when a wanderer passes near

That loves such pleasant places. Deep adown,

The nest is made a hermit’s mossy cell.

Snug lie her curious eggs in number five,

Of deadened green, or rather olive brown;

And the old prickly thorn-bush guards them well.

So here we’ll leave them, still unknown to wrong,

As the old woodland’s legacy of song.

在翠绿的林地里,让我们轻柔地漫游,

倾听夜莺之声——她就住在这里

安静!要轻轻开启森林之门,以免

声音太大,吓得她逃离爱巢;

在这里我一年到头都能听见她的欢唱,

在清晨,在黄昏,一天到晚,

简直就像为了歌唱而生。就在此地,

枝头松萝在此恣意生长,

粗鲁地漫过路径,挡住去路——

孩子们在这里摘取蓝铃花,

在青苔小径上大笑着捉迷藏——

小时候我曾在这里打猎,

手脚并用地钻过荆棘丛,

找寻她的巢窠,看她喂养后代。

为此我曾徒劳耗费了多少时光

一切都像尚未成型的思想那样隐秘。

在榛树的低枝以下,在皱褶的蕨叶

层层掩映之处,我曾俯身蜷缩,

观看她放声歌唱,并且心中疑惑,

如此闻名的鸟儿为何只穿一身土黄?

她唱得痴迷时两翼颤抖,

翎羽直竖,似乎喜不自禁,

嘴巴大张,似乎要用婉转歌声

放飞她的心。夏日里

最欢乐的时光必然有她,

她为我塑造了多少快乐幻想;

可若是我碰到草丛,或者动作略大

一切都会戛然而止。我只得眼睁睁看着

胆怯的鸟儿逃离了榛树从,

落脚在远处藏好,这才再度开腔。

无处寻觅,唯有无数叶片倾听,

丰盛的喜乐从华美的曲调中倾泻而出,

直到一旁的画眉出于嫉妒而开腔

唱起了略显局促却几乎同样优美的歌声;

他每年有一半时光要操心生活,

遍布斑点的胸中热情遭到压制,

可是夜莺却专属于夏天,

光秃的枝干,寒冬的诸般过错

全都与她的音乐与生活无关。

她的喜乐常翠,她的世界宽广——

听吧!她又像平常一样——都别做声——

在黑刺李从中,若是仔细寻访,

就能看到她那隐秘的居所。

轻轻拨开榛树的枝丫,

小心蹲在在沙沙作响的树冠之下,

我们今天要再次搜索,

一遍遍寻找蕨叶编织的荆棘团。

在芦苇般的长草随意弯腰之处,

我们要趟过去,寻找隐秘角落:

在这样的地点,通常她们会在地面上

搭建鸟巢,傻小子们绝想不到在此寻找——

哈!看啊!她的隐秘小窝就在这里,

在山楂树的树桩上!我苦苦地

寻找了好几个钟头。就在这儿!拨开这从荆棘——

不行,还是踩着它的荆条凑过去更妥当。

多么精细的鸟儿!我们还没

穿过荆棘之前,她开口歌唱

调门清亮,高得吓人。现在我们靠近了

她的窝,她突然闭了口——恰似被恐惧噎住,

唯恐歌声暴露家园所在。所以现在

我们要折返回去,不再打扰她:

无路可通的孤寂是她的保安,我们不便打搅。

看!她端坐在苍劲的橡树枝头

因为恐惧而缄口不语;我们的现身压制了

她的欢乐,怀疑冷却了所有的喜悦。

接着唱吧,甜美的鸟儿!愿你的视野里

见不到比起现在欺骗你的恐惧更糟的不幸。

我们不会洗劫音乐的主人,

也不会将这欢乐之所化为囚笼;

因为旋律似乎潜藏在你家周围的

每一朵盛开鲜花当中。遍地风信子

都随着美丽的歌声俯仰身姿。

盛放的杜鹃花,摇曳着斑驳的叶子,

似乎被歌声羞得满脸通红。

多么神奇的巢窠;没有其他飞鸟

会使用如此松软的材质,或者选择

这样的地点筑巢;枯干的橡树叶

充当外层,内层是天鹅绒一般的苔藓

与草叶碎片。还有零星散布的

粗细兽毛,看似不像建筑材料。

这鸟巢相比人类的居所似乎一无所长。

然而自然才是巧匠,努力为了

她的子女营造舒适的家,即便在这里。

孤寂的门徒在这里不受打扰地

消磨时光,除非有漫游之人

因为喜爱景色而靠近。在更深处,

这苔藓的巢窠恰似隐士的小屋。

五枚精巧的鸟蛋妥帖安放,

蛋壳是暗绿色或者说橄榄棕色;

遍布尖刺的荆棘丛拱卫着它们;

莫要再打扰它们了,它们尚不知世间险恶,

这就是古老树林的遗赠之歌。

这就是圈地运动所毁灭的世界。这就是英国为了工业化与人口增长而付出的代价。约翰.克莱尔——酗酒与间歇发作的精神病令他原本就艰难的生活更加雪上加霜——倒是要看看哪位读者胆敢忘却这一切。

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