The Lesson of a Tree

The Lesson of a Tree
较难 1568

一棵树的启示

I should not take either the biggest or the most picturesque tree to illustrate it. Here is one of my favorites now before me, a fine yellow poplar, quite straight, perhaps 90 feet high, and four thick at the butt. How strong, vital, enduring! How dumbly eloquent! What suggestions of imperturbability and being, as against the human trait of mere seeming. Then the qualities, almost emotional, palpably artistic, heroic, of a tree; so innocent and harmless, yet so savage. It is, yet says nothing. How it rebukes by its tough and equable serenity all weathers, this gusty-temper’d little whiffet, man, that runs indoors at a mite of rain or snow. Science (or rather half-way science) scoffs at reminiscence of dryad and hamadryad, and of trees speaking. But, if they don’t, they do as well as most speaking, writing, poetry, sermons—or rather they do a great deal better. I should say indeed that those old dryad-reminiscences are quite as true as any, and profounder than most reminiscences we get. (“Cut this out,” as the quack mediciners say, and keep by you.) Go and sit in a grove or woods, with one or more of those voiceless companions, and read the foregoing, and think.
我不会列举最直耸云天或者最绚烂夺目的树来说明这个问题。现在我面前的是一棵我最爱的树,一棵茂盛的黄白杨,树干笔直,可能有九十英尺高,最粗的地方有四英尺宽。多么强壮,多么生机勃勃,多么坚忍不拔!多么口若悬河,而又默默无闻!这是沉着冷静、存在即真的表现,与人仅仅注重外表的性格恰恰相反。一棵树情感丰富,艺术感唾手可得,英雄气十足;天真无知,无心害人,而又冷酷无情。一棵树具备这些气质,却从不言语。树以坚强和一如既往的平静指责所有雨雪阴晴天气,大风来袭也只是轻轻摇曳,只要有一丝雨水或者一片雪花,人们就会跑进室内。科学(或者伪科学)嘲笑人们回忆森林女神和树神,嘲笑树间的轻语。但是,如果他们不介意,他们同样可以讲演,可以写作,可以吟诗,可以布道—或者他们可以做得更好。我应该说这些古老的回忆的确千真万确,比我们所作的大多数追忆更加深刻。(“把树切断”,庸医说这话的时候,你把树据为己有。)坐在小树林或者森林中,与这些默默无语的朋友相伴,回忆往事,陷入沉思。
 
One lesson from affiliating a tree—perhaps the greatest moral lesson anyhow from earth, rocks, animals, is that same lesson of inherency, of what is, without the least regard to what the looker on (the critic) supposes or says, or whether he likes or dislikes. What worse—what more general malady pervades each and all of us, our literature, education, attitude toward each other, (even toward ourselves,) than a morbid trouble about seems, (generally temporarily seems too,) and no trouble at all, or hardly any, about the sane, slow-growing, perennial, real parts of character, books, friendship, marriage—humanity’s invisible foundations and hold-together?
追溯一棵树的根源得到的启示—也许从土地、岩石、动物身上获得的最伟大的道德启示同样是内在属性,无论旁观者(评论家)如何猜想或者评论,无论他喜欢抑或厌恶,都坚守自己的初衷。更糟糕的是—我们之间常常出现的流行疾病,我们的文学、教育、待人态度(甚至待己态度)之间常常出现的问题和疾病一样看起来不会造成困难,或者根本就没有困难,只是健全的、慢慢生长的、终年存在的人性本质,书籍、友情、婚姻的本质———无形的根基,紧紧地连接在一起?

By Walter Whitman
  • 字数:309个
  • 易读度:较难
  • 来源: 2017-10-11