A selection from Night Flights III, a collection of short stories by Rodney Chang (2013)

              

                 Makapu Bystander

              玛卡普守望者

By Rodney E.J. Chang

作者:罗德尼·  

 

 

                Hawaiian legend is that Pele, the goddess of Volcanoes, centuries ago, inhabited Oahu, spending time close to the sea at Makapu cliffs.  These are black lava cliffs that tower over the sea, deep blue in the area.  Lore is that Pele used to sit in a lava formation that fronted a magnificent view of the ocean.  Makapu, storytellers claim, was the last spot that Pele lived before moving permanently to the Big Island.  As the islands' goddess of volcanoes, the action was no longer on Oahu.  All its craters were extinct.  It was time for Pele to move on to the the youngest island, still emerging on its borders from lava flow that rose inside rock formations that began at the floor of the ocean. 

夏威夷的传说中,火山女神贝利,几个世纪前,居住在瓦胡岛,很多时候都在靠近大海的玛卡普悬崖。这些都是高耸于这片蔚蓝色海域的黑色的熔岩峭壁。洛尔是贝利用来坐着观赏大海壮丽景色的火山熔岩。讲故事的人说玛卡普是贝利永久迁移到大岛前的最后一个居住地。由于该岛的火山女神,不再在瓦胡岛上生活。它的所有火山口都已经灭绝。是应该让贝利移居到了新兴的岛屿的时候了,这些岛屿仍然在始于海底的涨岩层内部的熔岩流边界不断出现。

                 But before hopping islands, legend tells of Pele climbing one last time to sit on “her” lava mound that was shaped into her chair.  To the goddess it was more than just a chair with the best view (and facing eastward, towards the new erupting island); it was her temporary throne. 

但在换岛之前,传说贝利最后一次爬上了一个,坐在被塑造成她的椅子的她的“熔岩丘”上。对于女神来说,它不仅仅是一个具有最佳视野(面向东方,朝向新的喷发岛)的椅子,而且那是她的临时宝座。

               As a farewell to this island, the goddess made her way up by foot to the formation for a last time, only to find a night fisherman sitting in it!  There it was convenient, with the help of his lit torch, to prepare his fishing gear before hiking further closer to the cliff's edge to fish.

作为对这个岛的告别,女神最后一次一路步行到了这里,却发现一个夜钓渔夫坐在上面!那里是个很方便的地方,在点燃的火炬的帮助下,他在进一步走到靠近悬崖边钓鱼前,正在准备他的渔具。

                 The dark complexion, white-haired Hawaiian man felt a chill engulf his body.  He shivered, thinking the sensation to be all so strange since it was a windless and balmy summer evening.  Then his goose pimples due to the frigidity instantly disappeared and was replaced with the smell of plumeria blossoms.  Where, he thought, was the fragrance coming from?  There were no such trees growing on this barren area of the lava cliff.

 那个皮肤黝黑,满头白发的夏威夷人感到一阵寒意在吞噬他的身体。他颤抖着,这种感觉是那么的完全陌生,因为这是一个无风和温暖的夏夜。然后他由于寒冷而产生的鸡皮疙瘩瞬间消失,取而代之的是盛开的缅栀花的香味。这时,他想,这些香味来自何处?这块熔岩峭壁的不毛之地是没有这种树木生长的。

                Keliho, still seated in the lava chair, did not have look up and around.  He momentarily shuddered when, in this place of barren rocky cliffs and isolation, he felt a human hand on his shoulder.

          科利霍 ,仍然坐在熔岩椅子上,没有左顾右盼。当他感觉到在这个贫瘠和与世隔绝的岩石峭壁,一个人的手放在他的肩上的时候,他激灵灵打了一个寒颤。

            

                Panic dissipated as quickly as it had arrived when he turned and saw the face of a beautiful maiden.  Now he knew where the flowery aroma was coming from.  The shapely lass had a reef of fresh white plumeria on her head.  The band of petals that acrossed her forehead seemed to glow..  Maybe, thought the fisherman, it was the harsh light of his torch fueled with fish oil, or his failing old eyes.  The intruder was the first to speak.

当他转过身来,看到一个美丽的少女脸庞,恐慌转瞬即逝。现在他知道花香是来自何方了。匀称的姑娘头上戴着有新鲜的白色缅栀花。花瓣越过她的额头似乎在生长…渔夫想到,也许是燃烧着鱼油的火炬的光芒太刺眼,抑或是他老眼昏花。陌生人是第一个说话了。

               “About to go fishing, are you?” she said, in a soothing, kindly voice.

“您是想要钓鱼吗?”她用一种平静,和蔼的音调说道。

               “Yes, I'm just about ready to head out.  As you can see, I'm just about finished with tying squid tentacles to my fishhooks.” Long ago, the hooks were carved out of fish bones.

“是的,我正要准备出发。正如你所看到的,我刚刚把鱿鱼的触角绑到我的鱼钩上。 “很久以前,鱼钩是用鱼骨头雕刻出来的”

               “You have the wrong bait for this particular night.”

“在这个特别的夜晚,您用错了鱼饵。”

               “How can you say that?  I've been coming here for decades; I know the area well....  And you're so young...and a woman.”

“你怎么能这么说?我来这儿已经几十年了;我知道这块地方很不错…并且你这么年轻…还是个女人。”

                Hearing this remark, suddenly the woman voice sounded gruffer, older, and more assertive.

 听到这句话,女人的声音突然听起来更加粗哑 、更成熟并且更加自信。

                “Suit yourself.  And where do you plan to try and catch fish on this full moon night?”

 “随您便。在这个月圆之夜,您打算在哪里尝试和捕鱼?”

                Extending an arm and pointing, the fisherman said, “To the right, about  a half hour's walk along the ledges.”

伸出一只手臂并且指着远处,渔夫说,“就在右边,沿着暗礁步行半个小时。”

                “There's nothing swimming there tonight.”

“今晚那里什么鱼都没有。”

               “How would you know?”

“你怎么知道的?”

               “Because I am a woman and so young?” said the stranger, ridiculing the old man's past comment.

“因为我是个女人而且那么年轻?”陌生人说到,嘲笑老人之前的评论。

               “Well, no,” answered the veteran fisherman of the area.  “But because you don't look like a fisherman and I've never seen you around this area, let alone at night when the fish do bite.”

“哦,不可能,”这个老渔夫回答道。“但是因为你看起来不像一个渔夫,而且我从来没有在这附近见过你,更不必说在晚上鱼咬钩的时候”

                “OK, have it your way.  It's a long night.  When you realize you have been wasting your time, go the other way, or left from this spot in which you are sitting.”

“好吧,按您的想法做吧。这是个漫长的夜晚。当您意识到正在浪费时间,试试别的方式,或者离开您正在坐着的这个位置。”

                Keliho, the life-long angler, didn't know what to say.

科利霍这个年迈的垂钓者,无言以对。

                “But be assured you still won't catch anything by following my directions, unless you change your bait to a big piece of raw aku.”  She could smell the strong odor of the fish from within his matted bag.  So she knew he had some.

      “不过放心,您按照我的指导还是不会捉到任何东西,除非您把诱饵改为一大块生鲔鱼。 ”她应该可以从他凌乱的袋子里闻到鲔鱼的难闻气味。所以她知道他带了一些。

                Before the old man could refute her advice, the woman suddenly disappeared.  He heard her last words, like from a distant voice up in the sky.

在老人可以反驳她的建议之前,这个女人突然消失了。他听到了她最后的话,就仿佛是从遥远的天际传来。

                “And you dare to have sat on this sacred throne of rock.  Such an act is disrespectful and cannot be forgiven.”

“你竟敢坐在这个神圣的岩石宝座上。这种行为是大不敬并且不能被宽恕的。”

                The fisherman was ready to go and fish.  Maybe, he thought, he shouldn't have drank so much kava before heading out to fish.  Maybe the appearance of this woman, he reasoned, was a hypnotic narcotic affect from the native drink.  He had drunk more than the usual before heading out this night.  He dismissed the thought of the woman and went about the busy for which he had come.  The fisher went in the direction that he had planned,  and used the squid bait that he had already attached to his hook. 

渔夫准备好了,就出发去钓鱼了。可能,他觉得,他不应该在去钓鱼之前喝那么多卡瓦酒。今天晚上出发之前他就已经喝过量了。他丢掉了女人的想法忙着出发了。渔夫朝着自己计划的方向前进,并且用上了他已经挂上钩的章鱼诱饵。

                After an hour at different spots in the area, the fisherman did not feel a single nimble.  So then he decided to venture to the other location where the woman had suggested.  I was going to try there next anyway, he convinced himself.

在这个区域的不同地点忙活了一个小时之后,渔夫一无所获。于是他决定到那个女人所建议的其它地方去碰碰运气。不管怎么样,我接下来都要去试试,他说服自己道。

                 After half and hour in the new spot, still nothing took the bait.  In the bright moon light he could see the surface of the sea with rolls of waves splashing in at the base of the cliff below.   I might as well switch to the aku bait, he next thought.  That's why I bought something else in case the squid failed to attract the fish.

在新地方半个小时后,仍然无鱼上钩。明亮的月光下,他可以看到悬崖下的海面波光粼粼。我可能应该换成鲔鱼做鱼饵,他接下来想到。那就是为什么在章鱼饵不管用的时候我买了一些其它的鱼饵。

                On the first dunk with the changed baited hook, the pole bent mightily. 

在换完鱼饵第一次下钩之后,鱼竿开始强烈的弯曲了。

                It worked!  And whatever is on the hook is huge!  In fact, so huge that he heard his long bamboo pole start to crack.  Keliho was old but a strong man.  Without thinking, he wrapped the line around one hand and started to pull with the other.  He went closer to the edge to get ready to haul the prize in and to catch a glimpse of the mighty fish.

真的管用了!不管怎么说,钩子上可是个大家伙!真的那么大,他都能听到他的长竹竿开始断裂的声音了。科利霍虽老,但是却很强壮。想也没想,他一只手开始缠线,另一只手则开始拉。他站在了岸边上,准备拉上奖品来,眼睛撇向了这条大鱼。

                The silvery streak of the side of the fish as it maneuvered to attempt an escape shone brightly in the moonlight.

鱼在试图逃跑的时候,侧面的银色条纹在明亮的月光下熠熠生辉。

 

                Wow!  That's the largest ulua (jackfish) I've ever seen in my life.  I just have to catch it!

哇!那是条我一生中所见过的最大的乌鲁亚(狗鱼)。我一定要捉住它!

                The monster was pulling hard but Keliho was determined to win.  He got greedy, moving way too close to the ledge to get into the best position to guide the fish closer.  Suddenly the fish dived forcefully, exerting such strength that it caused Keliho to slip, lose his balance, and fall over the ledge – right into the dark and turbulent sea below.

这条怪物在拼命的拽,但是科利霍志在必得。他开始变的贪婪,离岸边更近一步来获得最佳位置,以便把鱼拖的更近。突然,鱼有力的潜入水中,力量如此之大,以至于科利霍开始打滑,失去平衡,摔出了岸边—正朝着下面黑暗和波涛汹涌的大海而去。

                 The fish kept diving, taking the fisherman down with him as his arm was entangled with the line.  Keliho gasped for air, swallowing more water. 

鱼继续下潜,把渔夫也一起拖进了水里,因为他的胳膊被鱼线缠住了。科利霍想要喘气,但却喝了更多的水。

                 His eyes widened when he saw that further down, the fish had stopped next to the woman that he had met earlier in the evening.  It was her alright, but now her eyes were as bright as glowing balls of hot coal.

当他进一步下沉的时候,他的眼睛大睁着,鱼停在了他当晚早些时候遇到的女人旁边。这正是她,但是现在她的眼睛就像燃烧的煤炭一样明亮。

                 Before he lost consciousness, he mentally heard her say, 

                 “Hmm, this aku is fresh.  Thank you for delivering this snack to me.  I don't particularly care for squid.”

在他昏过去之前,他内心听到她说,“嗯,这条鲔鱼很新鲜。谢谢你给我带来的小吃。我并不是特别在意章鱼。”

    

 

 

 

 

 

       

              

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