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英语美文精华必背(音频):河之歌

2016-03-30    来源:小e英语    【      美国外教 在线口语培训
The Song of the River
河之歌
 
You hear it all along the river. You hear it, loud and strong, from the rowers as they urge the junk with its high stem, the mast lashed alongside, down the swift running stream. You hear it from the trackers, a more breathless chant, as they pull desperately against the current, half a dozen of them perhaps if they are taking up a sampan, a couple of hundred if they are hauling a splendid junk, its square sail set, over a rapid. On the junk a man stands amidships beating a drum incessantly to guide their efforts, and they pull with all their strength, like men possessed, bent double; and sometimes in the extremity of their travail they crawl on the ground, on all fours, like the beasts of the field. They strain, strain fiercely, against the pitiless might of the stream. The leader goes up and down the line and when he sees one who is not putting all his will into the task he brings down his split bamboo on the naked back. Each one must do his utmost or the labour of all is vain. And still they sing a vehement, eager chant, the chant of the turbulent waters. I do not know how words can describe what there is in it of effort. It serves to express the straining heart, the breaking muscles, and at the same time the indomitable spirit of man which overcomes the pitiless force of nature. Though the rope may part and the great junk swing back, in the end the rapid will be passed; and at the close of the weary day there is the hearty meal...
沿着整条河,都能够听见歌声,洪亮而有力度。船夫们划着木船顺流而下,船尾翘得高高的,船边绑着桅杆。这也许是急促些的号子吧。纤夫们拼命地拉着纤逆流而上,如果拉的是小木船,也许就只有五六个人,如果拉的是过急滩、扬着横帆的大船,就要二百多人了。一个壮汉站在船中央,不停地击鼓助威,指引着他们加紧干活。于是,他们用尽全身的力量,着了魔似的,俯身探地,有时用尽力了,就全身趴在地上匍匐前进,像是田地里劳动的牲畜。他们用力,拼命用力,对抗着流水无情的阻挡之力。领头的在纤绳前后不停奔走,看到有人没有竭尽全力,就用竹板打他的光背。每个人都必须竭尽全力,否则就要前功尽弃。就这样,他们仍旧唱着激昂而炙烈的号子,那汹涌澎湃的河水号子。我不知道用怎样的词语才能描写出这其中的拼搏,它体现出了紧绷的弦,几乎要断裂的筋肉,同时也体现了人类以顽强的精神克服这无情的自然力。虽然绳子可能扯断,大船可能倒退,但终能渡过激流。在筋疲力尽的一天结束之后,可以痛快地吃上一顿饱饭……
 

But the most agonizing song is the song of the coolies who bring the great bales from the junk up the steep steps to the town wall. Up and down they go, endlessly, and endless as their toil rises their rhythmic cry. He, aw,ah,on. They are barefoot and naked to the waist. The sweat pours down their faces and their song is a groan of pain. It is a sigh of despair. It is heart rending. It is hardly human. It is the cry of souls in infinite distress, only just musical, and that last note is the ultimate sob of humanity. Life is too hard, too cruel, and this is the final despairing protest. That is the song of the river.
然而最让人苦闷的歌是苦力的歌,他们背着从船上卸下的大包,沿着陡坡爬上城墙。他们不停地来回上下,和着没有尽头的劳动,响起有节奏的喊声:嗨,呦,嗨,呦。他们赤脚裸背,脸上的汗水不断地向下流。他们的歌是痛苦的呻吟,失望的叹息,让人们听起来心碎不已,难以相信是人的声音。这是在无尽的悲凉中呼喊的灵魂,只不过配上了有节奏的音乐,那终曲简直就是人性最终的低泣。生活如此艰难、如此残酷,这喊声正是最后绝望的抗议,这就是河之歌! 


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