歌一首 《童年旧事》

2010-06-26 17:33:45

天气: 晴朗 心情: 高兴

歌一首,附英文译本     《童年旧事》




It was year 1935, and the season was Duanwu[端午节] of Yi Hai year[乙亥年]in the lunar system. Zhiliao[知了. A species of cricket with wings, breeding in summer and making noise all-day-long in the trees.made noise in the rong tree[榕树 while white clouds folded and overlapped one another forming the shapes of pale buffaloes and grey dogs.



The rice plants were half-ripe and the farmers were half-busy. They were taking a rest in the cool shade of the rong tree, eating rou zong[肉粽, that is ma zang in Hokkien or Teochew.. Black clouds rose from the edge of the sky before long and the sound of muffled thunder came rolling from the far distance.



It seems that the school was closed for the day and I followed a companion to take a seat by the side of the fishpond. Seeing the other people eating, I thought of it and ran jumping home.



At that time, we lived in Ji Gong’s house[子江。Ji Gong, who has since passed away, was our close relative (亲人). His grandfather and my grandfather came from the same parents. We belonged to the 24th,‘CHEW ()’generation, down from the same great-grandfather.. It was of a level and steady form, with the thick-wood door installed in the middle of the frontage. One could look from the entrance right towards the back-wall.



There was a strip of paper pasted underneath the eaves to indicate the presence of swallow as goddess by the name of “Miss Seven”. There was also a place for the Heavenly Official whom we knew from an even younger age. After the main door, there was an air-well which sank a few inches and had a stone-plated bottom.



The sitting room was inside, so were the bedrooms. Drawing back towards the main door, there were two open roomswalled but without a doorlocated left and right. The one on the right was dusty where old items were stored, and on the left, it was the kitchen.



Before reaching the door, I called out to say that I was hungry and that I wanted to eat some rou zong. Mother responded from inside the house saying I would not be forgotten.



We two brothers ate together and bathed with the so-called dragon-boat water. It was then close to mid-day and dark rain-clouds gathered overhead.



Mother worshiped, finished and kept back the table. Raindrops came at that very moment, followed by heavy rain which rolled across.



The rain, lightning and thunder came crossing one another all of a sudden and rain water splashed in all directions turning the place into a blurry space. Lightning flashed like golden snakes in the sky, producing ear-breaking noise.



It seemed that a huge mountain had collapsed, shaking the earth and the human world. There were thunder drums, cloud flags, rain arrows and wind knifes, using the sky as the battlefield.



There were explosions of sounds where thunder and wing moved in a hurry. Wind caused the rain to pour down like turning a lake over[大雨倾盆而下]



The water in the air-well rose inch by inch and over-flew in a moment to flood the place around. The brick floors in the two side rooms were then covered by rainwater. We brothers took fun in running to-and-fro.



The heavy rain was over within a short while and the sky opened up again like before. Mother turned around and handed over one thing which the brothers took over with much delight and laughter.



It turned out that a duck was slaughtered for the festival and Mother blew up the duck’s airbag and tied it like a balloon which we could draw across the air-well like a vessel.



We did not have toys at home to play with during our childhood, so we did not mind that the smelly raw organ was dirty. It was a cheap thing as it would be thrown away anyhow, but the thought was excellent and there was motherly love on it. Mother has passed away for ages, yet the scene stilled lingered around instead of vanishing from our mind.



A few months passed in the same year and the cool wind turned chilly as it was then already late autumn. We placed a thick wooden stool in the air-well and lighted up the spot with a dim kerosene lamp.



We sat on low stools close by where my 5th Brother turned teacher. He taught me a short passage from a composition written in the ancient Chinese language[古文], which composition was entitled <Da Su Wu Shu[答苏武书 >a letter said to be written by Li Ling[李陵].



I was in Primary Three in that year and 5th Brother was in Primary Four. He had read that passage (as supplement补充课题

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