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Tropic of Cancer[北回归线][En/Cn]

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第4节

如果没有书可看,不上课时我就上楼到学监的宿舍里找他们闲聊。他们对周围发生的一切无知得可笑,尤其对于艺术界的事情,他们差不多同学生一样无知。我好像闯进了一所没有标明出口的、私人开办的小疯人院一样,有时我在拱廊下窥探,看着孩子们大步走过去,脏兮兮的缸子里插着大块大块的面包。

Between sessions, if I had no book to read, I would go upstairs to the dormitory and chat with the pions. They were delightfully ignorant of all that was going on – especially in the world of art. Almost as ignorant as the students themselves. It was as if I had gotten into a private little madhouse with no exit signs. Sometimes I snooped around under the arcades, watching the kids marching along with huge hunks of bread stuck in their dirty mugs.

 

  我自己总是觉得饥饿难忍,因为我根本不可能赶上早饭。早饭总在早晨一个荒唐的时辰开,而那会儿睡在床上真是舒服极了。早餐是大碗大碗的发蓝的咖啡和一块块白面包,没有奶油可抹。午饭是菜豆或扁豆,撒进去一点点肉屑使它看起来开胃些。这种食物只适合给做苦工的囚犯吃、给砸石头的囚犯吃。酒也很糟糕,不是搀了水就是变了味。这些食物有热量,不过烹调不得法。据众人说,莱克诺姆先生应对此负责。这话我也不信,人家花钱雇他,目的是要他不叫我们饿死就行。他并不问我们是否有痔疮或疗疮,并不关心我们是嘴细还是嘴粗。为什么要关心?他只是受雇去用这么多克的菜肴生产这么多千瓦的能量,一切都是以马力来计算的。这全在脸色青白的办事员早晨、中午和晚上抄抄写写的厚帐本上仔细计算过,借、贷这两部分用一道红线从中间隔开。

I was always hungry myself, since it was impossible for me to go to breakfast which was handed out at some ungodly hour of the morning, just when the bed was getting toasty. Huge bowls of blue Coffee with chunks of white bread and no butter to go with it. For lunch, beans or lentils with bits of meat thrown in to make it look appetizing. Food fit for a chain gang, for rock breakers. Even the wine was lousy. Things were either diluted or bloated. There were calories, but no cuisine. M. l'Econome was responsible for it all. So they said. I don't believe that, either. He was paid to keep our heads just above the water line. He didn't ask if we were suffering from piles or carbuncles; he didn't inquire if we had delicate palates or the intestines of wolves. Why should he? He was hired at so many grams the plate to produce so many kilowatts of energy. Everything in terms of horse power. It was all carefully reckoned in the fat ledgers which the pasty faced clerks scribbled in morning, noon and night. Debit and credit, with a red line down the middle of the page.

 

  空着肚子在四合院里徘徊时我常常不由自主地觉得自己有一点儿痴狂,我有一点儿像“愚蠢的查理”那个可怜虫,只是没有奥代特•德•尚帕狄丰来跟我玩牌。有一半的日子里我得向学生讨烟抽,有时正上着课我就跟他们一起啃开了一点干儿面包。炉子总灭,所以我很快便用完了配给的木柴。要哄得管宿舍的办事员拿出一点儿木柴来是很不容易的事情,最后我对此恼火极了,便上街去捡柴,像一个阿拉伯人似的。我很惊奇,在第戎的街道上几乎捡不到能生火的柴。不过这些小小的征集木柴的远证将我带到了陌生的地域,我渐渐熟悉了据信是以一位名叫菲利贝尔•帕尔隆的已故音乐家命名的一条小街,那儿有好几家妓院。这块地方总是会叫人更快活一些,有做饭的味道、有晾出来的衣物。我偶尔也看到在妓院里闲荡的可怜的傻瓜,他们比在城镇中心见到的穷鬼还好一些,每次穿过一家百货店时我都会碰到这些穷鬼。为了取暖我常常这样穿来穿去,我估计他们也是为了达到同一目的这样做的。他们在寻找一个愿为他们买一杯咖啡的人,由于寒冷和孤独他们显得有一点儿痴呆,而当蓝色的夜幕降临时整个城市都显得有几分痴呆。你可以任选一个星期四在主要马路上散步,一直走下去也永远不会碰到一个胸襟宽大的人。六七万人—也许更多—穿着羊毛内衣,无处可去,无事可做。他们生产出一车车芥末。女子管弦乐队笨拙地奏出《快乐的寡妇》。大旅馆里提供银质服务。一座公爵的宫殿正在一块块、一点点地朽掉。树木在霜冻下发出尖厉的响声。木头鞋子不停地格登格登响。那所大学在纪念歌德的忌日,或者是诞辰日,我记不清到底是哪一个了(通常人们是纪念忌日的),总之这是一件蠢事,人人都在打哈欠、伸胳膊。

Roaming around the quadrangle with an empty belly most of the time I got to feel slightly mad. Like Charles the Silly, poor devil – only I had no Odette Champdivers with whom to play stinkfinger. Half the time I had to grub cigarettes from the students, and during the lessons sometimes I munched a bit of dry bread with them. As the fire was always going out on me I soon used up my allotment of wood. It was the devil's own time coaxing a little wood out of the ledger clerks. Finally I got so riled up about it that I would go out in the street and hunt for firewood, like an Arab. Astonishing how little firewood you could pick up in the streets of Dijon. However, these little foraging expeditions brought me into strange precincts. Got to know the little street named after a M. Philibert Papillon – a dead musician, I believe – where there was a cluster of whorehouses. It was always more cheerful hereabouts; there was the smell of cooking, and wash hanging out to dry. Once in a while I caught a glimpse of the poor half wits who lounged about inside. They were better off than the poor devils in the center of town whom I used to bump into whenever I walked through a department store. I did that frequently in order to get warm. They were doing it for the same reason, I suppose. Looking for someone to buy them a Coffee. They looked a little crazy, with the cold and the loneliness. The whole town looked a bit crazy when the blue of evening settled over it. You could walk up and down the main drive any Thursday in the week till doomsday and never meet an expansive soul. Sixty or seventy thousand people – perhaps more – wrapped in woolen underwear and nowhere to go and nothing to do. Turning out mustard by the carload. Female orchestras grinding out The Merry Widow. Silver service in the big hotels. The ducal palace rotting away, stone by stone, limb by limb. The trees screeching with frost. A ceaseless clatter of wooden shoes. The University celebrating the death of Goethe, or the birth, I don't remember which. (Usually it's the deaths that are celebrated.) Idiotic affair, anyway. Everybody yawning and stretching.

 

  从马路上一路走进四合院,我总会产生一种深切的徒劳无功的感觉。院外是一片凄凉和空虚,院里也是一片凄凉和空虚。这座城镇笼罩在一种卑下的贫乏和啃书本的浓雾中,学的全是以往的渣滓。教室分布在里院四周,很像在北方森林中见到的小屋,学究们就在这儿尽情大发宏论。黑板上写着毫无用处的胡言乱语,法兰西共和国的未来公民得花毕生时间才能忘掉这些胡话。有时在马路边的大接待室里接待家长们,那儿摆着古代英雄的半身塑像,诸如莫里哀、拉辛、柯奈、伏尔泰之流。无论何时又一个不朽的人被摆进蜡像馆后,内阁部长们总要用湿润的嘴唇提到所有这些稻草人(没有维荣的,拉伯雷的和兰波的胸像)。总之,家长们和这些衬衣里塞了东西的蜡像在这庄严肃穆的会议上碰到一起了。国家雇了这些蜡像来矫正年轻人的思想,总是这样矫正,总是用这种美化庭院的方法使思想变得更有吸引力。小孩子们偶尔也上这儿来,人们很快便会把这些小向日葵从托儿所里移植出去装饰城市的草坪。有些只是橡皮植物,只消用一件破衬衣就可以很便当地掸去上面的尘土,一到晚上他们便急急忙忙没命地逃进宿舍里去了。宿舍!这儿亮着红灯,铃像消防队的警报一样呼啸,这儿的楼梯踏板由于人们常一窝蜂涌向教室被踩出了空洞。

Coming through the high driveway into the quadrangle a sense of abysmal futility always came over me. Outside bleak and empty; inside, bleak and empty. A scummy sterility hanging over the town, a fog of book-learning. Slag and cinders of the past. Around the interior courts were ranged the classrooms, little shacks such as you might see in the North woods, where the pedagogues gave free rein to their voices. On the blackboard the futile abracadabra which the future citizens of the republic would have to spend their lives forgetting. Once in a while the parents were received in the big reception room just off the driveway, where there were busts of the heroes of antiquity, such as Molière, Racine, Corneille, Voltaire, etc., all the scarecrows whom the cabinet ministers mention with moist lips whenever an immortal is added to the waxworks. (No bust of Villon, no bust of Rabelais, no bust of Rimbaud.) Anyway, they met here in solemn conclave, the parents and the stuffed shirts whom the State hires to bend the minds of the young. Always this bending process, this landscape gardening to make the mind more attractive. And the youngsters came too, occasionally – the little sunflowers who would soon be transplanted from the nursery in order to decorate the municipal grassplots. Some of them were just rubber plants easily dusted with a torn chemise. All of them jerking away for dear life in the dormitories as soon as night came on. The dormitories! where the red lights glowed, where the bell rang like a fire alarm, where the treads were hollowed out in the scramble to reach the education cells.

 

  还有那些教师,起初几天我甚至同他们中的几个人握了手,当然在拱廊下擦身而过时也总少不了碰碰帽子相互致意。可是根本谈不到倾心交谈,也谈不到走到街角那儿一起喝上一杯。那简直是不可想象的,他们有许多人显得像是吓破了胆。总之我是属于另一阶层的,他们甚至不愿同我这种人分享一只虱子。只要一看到他们我就气不打一处来,所以一看到他们过来我就暗暗诅咒。我常常靠着一恨柱子站在那儿,嘴角上叼着一根烟,帽子扣在眼睛上,待他们走到听得见的地方我便狠狠啐一口唾沫,再抬起帽子来。我甚至懒得张口同他们打招呼,我只是从牙缝里迸出一句,“去你妈的,杰克!”说完就拉倒。

Then there were the profs! During the first few days I got so far as to shake hands with a few of them, and of course there was always the salute with the hat when we passed under the arcades. But as for a heart to heart talk, as for walking to the corner and having a drink together, nothing doing. It was simply unimaginable. Most of them looked as though they had had the shit scared out of them. Anyway, I belonged to another hierarchy. They wouldn't even share a louse with the likes of me. They made me so damned irritated, just to look at them, that I used to curse them under my breath when I saw them coming. I used to stand there, leaning against a pillar, with a cigarette in the corner of my mouth and my hat down over my eyes, and when they got within hailing distance I would let squirt a good gob and up with the hat. I didn't even bother to open my trap and bid them the time of the day. Under my breath I simply said: "Fuck you, Jack!" and let it go at that.

 

  在这儿呆了一星期后我就觉得已在这儿呆了一辈子,这就像一场可怕的恶梦,简直摆脱不了它。想着它我常常会昏睡过去。几天前我才到了这儿,当时夜幕刚降下,人们在朦胧的灯光下像老鼠一样匆匆赶回家去,树木带着宝石尖般的恶意闪闪发光,我不止一千次地想起了这一切。从火车站到这所学校一路上犹如穿越但泽走廊的一次散步,到处毛茸茸的、有裂缝,令人神经紧张。这是死人尸骨铺砌的胡同,下面埋着衣衫褴楼、歪七扭八、互相搂抱在一起的死人,还有沙丁鱼骨制成的脊骨。学校本身像是矗立在一层薄雪之上,它像一座倒置的山,其山顶直插地球中心,上帝或魔鬼在那儿总穿着一件紧身衣干活,为那个始终不过是梦中遗精的天堂磨面粉。如果太阳出来过我也不记得了,我什么也不记得了,只记得从那边结了冰的沼泽上吹过来寒冷、油腻的雾,铁道就是在那儿消失在阴郁的群山中去。距火车站不远有一条人工运河,也许它是一条天然河也不得而知,它躲在黄色的天幕下,突起的两岸边斜搭着一些小棚屋。我突然悟到周围还有一座兵营,因为我不时遇到一些来自交趾支那的黄皮肤小个子,这伙扭来扭去、脸色焦黄的小矮个儿身着袋子似的肥大军衣四处乱瞅,活像放在刨花中的干骨架。

After a week it seemed as if I had been here all my life. It was like a bloody, fucking nightmare that you can't throw off. Used to fall into a coma thinking about it. Just a few days ago I had arrived. Nightfall. People scurrying Home like rats under the foggy lights. The trees glittering with diamond pointed malice. I thought it all out, a thousand times or more. From the station to the Lycée it was like a promenade through the Danzig Corridor, all deckle edged, crannied, nerve ridden. A lane of dead bones, of crooked, cringing figures buried in shrouds. Spines made of sardine bones. The Lycée itself seemed to rise up out of a lake of thin snow, an inverted mountain that pointed down toward the center of the earth where God or the Devil works always in a straitjacket grinding grist for that paradise which is always a wet dream. If the sun ever shone I don't remember it. I remember nothing but the cold greasy fogs that blew in from the frozen marshes over yonder where the railroad tracks burrowed into the lurid hills. Down near the station was a canal, or perhaps it was a river, hidden away under a yellow sky, with little shacks pasted slap up against the rising edge of the banks. There was a barracks too somewhere, it struck me, because every now and then I met little yellow men from Cochin China – squirmy, opium faced runts peeping out of their baggy uniforms like dyed skeletons packed in excelsior.

 

  这地方见鬼的中世纪遗风极难对付、极顽强,它低声呻吟着来回摇晃,从屋檐下跳出来向你扑来,像被割断脖子的罪犯那样从滴水嘴上垂下来。我不断扭过头去看身后,一直像一只挨脏叉子扎的螃蟹那样走路。所有这些肥胖的小怪物,所有粘在圣米歇尔教堂正面墙上石板状的雕像都跟在我身后走过弯弯曲曲的小胡同、拐过街角。圣米歇尔教堂的正面到了夜间便像一本集邮簿一样打开了,使你面对着印好的纸张上的吓人景物。灯熄了,这些景物也从眼前消失,像文字一样静寂无声,这时教堂正面的墙显得非常庄严雄伟。古老、粗糙的正面墙上的每一道缝里都回荡着夜风的沉重呼啸声,冰冷、僵硬、呈花边状的碎石上洒了一层朦朦胧胧的、苦艾酒般的雾和霜的涎水。

The whole goddamned medievalism of the place was infernally ticklish and restive, rocking back and forth with low moans, jumping out at you from the eaves, hanging like broken necked criminals from the gargoyles. I kept looking back all the time, kept walking like a crab that you prong with a dirty fork. All those fat little monsters, those slablike effigies pasted on the façade of the Eglise St. Michel, they were following me down the crooked lanes and around corners. The whole façade of St. Michel seemed to open up like an album at night, leaving you face to face with the horrors of the printed page. When the lights went out and the characters faded away flat, dead as words, then it was quite magnificent, the façade; in every crevice of the old gnarled front there was the hollow chant of the nightwind and over the lacy rubble of cold stiff vestments there was a cloudy absinthe like drool of fog and frost.

 

  教堂耸立的这个地方的一切似乎都前后倒了个儿,教堂本身在几世纪以来雪的侵蚀下也一定偏离了它的地基。它坐落在埃德加—基内广场,像一头死去的骡子那样迎着风蹲着。风穿过莫奈街呼啸而来,像胡乱飘扬的白发。它绕着白色拴马桩回旋,这些桩子挡住了公共汽车和二十匹骡子拉的马车的通道。有时清晨从这个出口摇摇摆摆出来后我会同勒诺先生不期而遇,他像一个贪吃的修道士一样把自己裹在修道士的长袍里,用十六世纪的语言同我攀谈。于是我同勒诺先生并排走,这时月亮像被刺破的气球从油腻腻的天空中跃出,我亦立刻堕入了超然的王国中。勒诺先生讲话干脆利落,像杏子一样淡而无味,带着很重的勃兰登保人的口音。他常常一见到我就滔滔不绝地谈起歌德或费希特,深沉、凝重的声音在广场上顶风的角落里发出隆隆的回声,像去年的雷鸣。尤卡坦人、桑给巴尔人、火地岛人,把我从这张海绿色的猪皮下救出来吧!美国北部堆积在我周围,冰河时代的狭湾、顶端呈蓝色的脊骨、疯狂的灯光,还有淫荡的基督教圣歌像雪崩一样从意大利的埃特纳火山延伸到爱琴海。一切都像泡沫一样冻得硬硬的。思想被禁锢,四周结上了霜。从卖弄小聪明的凄凉的包裹里传出被虱子吞食的圣人发出的快窒息的嗓音。这时我在场,裹在羊毛里,包在襁褓里,带着镣铐,被人割断了脚筋,不过我没有参与此事,我一直白到骨头里,不过有一种冷的碱性成分,有桔黄色指尖的手指。无恶意,对了,不过不爱做学问,没有天主教徒的柔肠。无恶意而又无情,像在我之前驶出易北河的人一样。我眺望大海、天空,眺望不可理喻而又相距不远不近的一切。

Here, where the church stood, everything seemed turned hind side front. The church itself must have been twisted off its base by centuries of progress in the rain and snow. It lay in the Place Edgar Quinet, squat against the wind, like a dead mule. Through the Rue de la Monnaie the wind rushed like white hair streaming wild: it whirled around the white hitching posts which obstructed the free passage of omnibuses and twenty mule teams. Swinging through this exit in the early morning hours I sometimes stumbled upon Monsieur Renaud who, wrapped in his cowl like a gluttonous monk, made overtures to me in the language of the sixteenth century. Falling in step with Monsieur Renaud, the moon busting through the greasy sky like a punctured balloon, I fell immediately into the realm of the transcendental. M. Renaud had a precise speech, dry as apricots, with a heavy Brandenburger base. Used to come at me full tilt from Goethe or Fichte, with deep base notes that rumbled in the windy corners of the Place like claps of last year's thunder. Men of Yucatan, men of Zanzibar, men of Tierra del Fuego, save me from this glaucous hog rind! The North piles up about me, the glacial fjords, the blue-tipped spines, the crazy lights, the obscene Christian chant that spread like an avalanche from Etna to the Aegean. Everything frozen tight as scum, the mind locked and rimed with frost, and through the melancholy bales of chitter wit the choking gargle of louse eaten saints. White I am and wrapped in wool, swaddled, fettered, hamstrung, but in this I have no part. White to the bone, but with a cold alkali base, with saffron-tipped fingers. White, aye, but no brother of learning, no Catholic heart. White and ruthless, as the men before me who sailed out of the Elbe. I look to the sea, to the sky, to what is unintelligible and distantly near.

 

  风吹动脚下的积雪,雪花随风飘动,使人发痒、刺痛,它们发出含混的啸声,被风卷到空中又纷纷扬扬地落下,裂成碎屑洒下来。没有太阳,没有咆哮的海浪,没有拍打堤岸的滔天巨浪。寒冷的北风带着有刺的矛尖吹来,冷冰冰地、刻毒地、贪婪地,具有破坏性,使人疲软无力。街道用弯曲的肘部支撑着身子走远了,它们逃离纷乱的景物,躲开严厉的注视。它们沿着不断变幻的格子瞒珊而去,从前面绕到教堂后面,砍倒塑像,推平纪念碑,拔出树木,封住小草,从土地中吸去其芳香气味。树叶变得同水泥一样干枯,露水也无法再使它们滋润起来,月亮再也不会把它的银光洒上无精打彩的叶片。四季循环即将陷于停顿。树枯萎了。马车发出明晰的竖琴似的砰砰响声在云母般的车辙中滚动。阴惨惨的、没有骨头的第戎在顶上有积雪的山峦间的空地上沉睡。夜里没有人活着或走动,只除了朝南去、朝青玉色的地域移去的不安分的精灵,然而我没有睡,仍在游荡。我是一个游荡的鬼魂,一个被这个冷冷的屠宰场吓坏了的白人。我是谁?我在这儿做什么?我堕入了刻毒的人性的冷墙中,我是一个白色的人影,在挣扎、在沉入冰凉的湖水中去,上面压着一大堆脑壳。于是我在高纬度的冷地方住下来,白垩的阶梯染成了深蓝色。黑暗走道里的土地熟悉我的脚步,感觉到上面踩着一只脚,一只翅膀在扑动,一阵喘息,一阵颤抖。我听见学识受到嘲弄,人影在向上攀,编幅口中流出的涎水从空中滴下,落在纸板糊的翅膀上发出叮当声。我听到火车相撞、链子哗啦乱响、车头轧轧响着喷气、吸气,流水。一切都带着陈旧的气味透过清雾向我袭来,还带着黄色的宿醉、诅咒和磨难。在第戎下面,在极北地域下很深的冥冥核心中站着埃阿斯,他的双肩被缚在磨盘上,橄榄叶吱吱作响,沼泽地里的绿水因为有了哇哇叫的青蛙而充满生机。

The snow under foot scurries before the wind, blows, tickles, stings, lisps away, whirls aloft, showers, splinters, sprays down. No sun, no roar of surf, no breaker's surge. The cold north wind pointed with barbed shafts, icy, malevolent, greedy, blighting, paralyzing. The streets turn away on their crooked elbows; they break from the hurried sight, the stern glance. They hobble away down the drifting lattice work, wheeling the church hind side front, mowing down the statues, flattening the monuments, uprooting the trees, stiffening the grass, sucking the fragrance out of the earth. Leaves dull as cement: leaves no dew can bring to glisten again. No moon will ever silver their listless plight. The seasons are come to a stagnant stop, the trees blench and wither, the wagons roll in the mica ruts with slithering harplike thuds. In the hollow of the white tipped hills, lurid and boneless Dijon slumbers. No man alive and walking through the night except the restless spirits moving southward toward the sapphire grids. Yet I am up and about, a walking ghost, a white man terrorized by the cold sanity of this slaughterhouse geometry. Who am I? What am I doing here? I fall between the cold walls of human malevolence, a white figure fluttering, sinking down through the cold lake, a mountain of skulls above me. I settle down to the cold latitudes, the chalk steps washed with indigo. The earth in its dark corridors knows my step, feels a foot abroad, a wing stirring, a gasp and a shudder. I hear the learning chaffed and chuzzled, the figures mounting upward, bat slime dripping aloft and clanging with pasteboard golden wings; I hear the trains collide, the chains rattle, the locomotive chugging, snorting, sniffing, steaming and pissing. All things come to me through the clear fog with the odor of repetition, with yellow hangovers and Gadzooks and whettikins. In the dead center, far below Dijon, far below the hyperborean regions, stands God Ajax, his shoulders strapped to the mill wheel, the olives crunching, the green marsh water alive with croaking frogs.

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