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      一匹穿山甲(節選)
      發布時間:2022年06月01日     辛勤 譯  
      來源: 英語世界
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      一匹穿山甲(節選)

      A Pangolin (Excerpt)


      文/李青松

      譯介/辛勤*

      審訂/許景城**


      【導讀】

       

      李青松,生態文學作家,畢業于中國政法大學法律系,長期從事生態文學研究與創作。代表作品有《開國林墾部長》《遙遠的虎嘯》《萬物筆記》《茶油時代》《大地倫理》《薇甘菊:外來物種入侵中國》等。曾獲新中國六十年全國優秀中短篇報告文學獎、徐遲報告文學獎、北京文學獎、呀諾達生態文學獎?,F任中國作家協會報告文學委員會委員,曾擔任第六屆魯迅文學獎評委。

       

      李青松多年致力于生態保護工作和生態文學創作。由于工作關系,他深入基層,收集第一手資料,以敏銳的視覺、細膩的描述、幽默的語言,帶著獨特的文人情懷,將自然界的生物密碼有效地傳遞給讀者,因此他的報告文學有著無與倫比的可信性與可讀性。其作品充滿了特有的人性之美和對大自然的敬畏與尊重,意在告誡人們自然界有其固有的秩序與生存法則,人為的過度干擾不僅會打亂自然界的秩序,破壞生態平衡,而且最后人類還會自食其果。

       

      本文節選自其散文《一匹穿山甲》。該文2017年發表于《文學報》,講述了上世紀九十年代初作者第一次在中越邊境見到穿山甲的所聞所思。作者發出了一個生態文人充滿憂傷卻鏗鏘有力的吶喊,希冀讀者閱后能夠引發共鳴,深入思考人類到底在自然界中扮演何種角色,如何正確處理人與非人類動物之間的關系,以及如何構建和諧的、可持續的地球命運共同體。


      穿穿穿。遇土穿土,遇水穿水,遇山穿山。穿穿穿。它不太機靈,有些笨拙,執拗,也有一股傻勁兒和憨勁兒。


      Move, move, move. Through soil, through water, through mountains. Go, go, go. It is a bit clumsy, slightly stubborn, somewhat silly and fairly awkward.


      此物甚奇——名曰:穿山甲。


      It is a very strange thing, known as “pangolin”.


      我頭一回見到穿山甲,是在上世紀九十年代初期。廣西中越邊境一處山坳集市,蜿蜒數里。攤販出售的東西多為農產品,諸如香蕉、杧果、龍眼等水果,還有雞、鴨等活物以及農具、刀具等手工制品。一個穿著草鞋,頭戴斗笠的越南少年蹲在角落里。他的面前置一竹籠,竹籠里裝著長著甲片、身體蜷縮成一團的動物。甲片有點像剛出土的古代銅錢,黏著泥土和草屑,一片一片疊加在一起。三匹。一大兩小。其中最小的那匹,小小的眼睛正在看著我,還眨呀眨的,眼角分明流著淚滴?!业男睦锟┼庖幌?。


      The first time I saw pangolins was in the early nineties. There was a flea market in Guangxi near the China-Vietnam border, which wound its way for a few miles. Vendors mainly sold agricultural products, including fruits such as bananas, mangos, and longans, and livestock such as chickens and ducks and also crafts such as farm tools and knives. A young Vietnamese boy wearing a pair of straw sandals and a straw hat crouched in the corner. In front of him, there was a bamboo cage which held animals that were fully covered in scales and curled up into masses. Each scale was like an unearthed ancient coin, blemished by soil and grass, and mutually superimposed. There were three of these creatures—one large and two small. The smallest one stared at me, seemingly with tears shining in the corners of its tiny blinking eyes. My heart trembled.


      同行的朋友告訴我,那就是穿山甲。


      My travelling companion told me that they were pangolins.


      多少年來,穿山甲眼角流著淚滴的情景,如在眼前,揮之不去。


      Over the years, that tearful pangolin has still lingered in my memory.


      穿山甲屬于地棲性哺乳動物,體形狹長,像是舊時鄉間老榆木疙瘩做成的面相粗鄙古怪的犁杖。穿山甲四肢短粗,全身有甲片,尾巴扁平而長,如鱷尾般堅實有力。背面呢,略略隆起呈弓狀,是隨時準備發力挑起事端嗎?當然不是。它可從來不去惹是生非。它毫無兇相,更不會主動向天敵發起進攻。當遇危險時,它唯一的手段就是防御——不是彈跳,不是外展,而是內斂,收緊,蜷縮成團呢。如果是山坡,它便就勢一滾,逃之夭夭了。我忽然悟到,在所有幾何圖形中,球形或許是最便于求生的吧。


      The pangolin is a terrestrial mammal, long and narrow in shape, like an ancient glum plough made from gnarled old elm branches in the countryside. Its limbs are stubby. Its body is covered by scales. Its flat and long tail is as solid and powerful as a crocodile’s. Its back is slightly uplifted and curved: is it ready to attack at any time? Absolutely not! It is a harmless and docile creature who never goads its natural enemies. When in danger, it tends to protect itself not by jumping and stretching, but by shrivelling, contracting, and curling up into a defensive ball. If it happens to be on a hill, it can roll down and flee easily. It strikes me that among all geometric shapes, the sphere is probably of the highest survivability.


      雖說堅硬的甲片是它的防御武器,但如果說穿山甲只會防御也不全對。當穿山甲把自己蜷縮一團時,也會利用肌肉控制甲片進行切割,像嘩嘩轉動的電鋸鋸齒一樣。雄獅、豹子面對它無處下口。即便下了口,嘴巴也會被割破,鮮血淋漓。蟒蛇對它也奈何不得,乖乖繞開,該干嘛干嘛吧。


      Although the hard scales serve as the defensive weapon, it is not entirely correct to state that this creature can do nothing but defend. When a pangolin curls up, its muscles can also be employed to control the scales for cutting, like a running serrated blade. In that way, it renders lions and leopards to prey in vain. Even if they make it, their mouths will be notched and bloodied. Even pythons are hopeless against it as well: they usually avoid this type of prey, and proceed for others.


      ……

       穿山甲

      多年前,我在南方山區走動時,一些老人說,早年間,穿山甲并不是什么稀罕物,一個獵戶一個冬天能抓二十余匹,供銷社專門給藥廠收購,一匹穿山甲也就賣三五塊錢。


      Many years ago, when I was on a trip in some southern mountains, a few elders told me that in the early days, pangolins were not rare. A hunter could catch more than twenty of them in a single winter. Local supply and marketing cooperatives specifically purchased them for pharmaceutical factories. A pangolin could only sell for three to five Chinese yuan.


      2000年之前,中國野生穿山甲種群尚有相當的數量。在云南、廣東、廣西、海南諸省區的山區,山民還能見到穿山甲覓食的身影或打洞推出的新鮮土堆。此后幾年,野外穿山甲的數量謎一樣驟減。至2005年,穿山甲曾廣泛分布的一些山區,野外調查種群數量居然顯示為零。也就是說,野外觀測已經很難見到穿山甲的蹤影了。洞穴也皆舊窟,而非新跡了。


      Before 2000, there was a considerable population of wild pangolins in China. In the mountains of Yunnan, Guangdong, Guangxi, and Hainan, villagers would often see pangolins foraging or find newly created mounds due to its digging. A few years later, the pangolin plummeted dramatically in population. By 2005, in some mountainous areas where pangolins had been widely decimated, the population of this creature, as field surveys show, actually totalled zero. In other words, it has been difficult to spot any pangolin in field observation recently. The dens have been deserted and no new life is trailed.


      有人說,陶弘景是罪魁。倘若他當初不把穿山甲寫進《名醫別錄》,穿山甲的命運可能就是另一種情況了。而李時珍也罪責難赦,《本草綱目》里少寫幾段,少寫幾個字不行嗎?寫來寫去的,窮寫什么呀?啪啪!應該給說這樣話的人兩個耳光。兩個不夠,還可以再加一個。假如人類變成螞蟻,穿山甲該是多么歡喜!假如地球倒回洪荒時代,我們該是多么快樂!——假如,假如,可是從來就沒有假如的世界??!


      Some claim that Tao Hongjing is the culprit. Had he not written the pangolin into Supplementary Records of Famous Physicians, the fate of the creature would have been different. Li Shizhen is also thought to be blamed for his writing about the pangolin in The Compendium of Materia Medication. As some propose, Li should have cut those bloody depictions out. Slap! Slap! Those who hold this kind of argument should receive a couple of slaps. Oh no, two is far from enough, and more is needed. If humans turned into ants, how joyful the pangolin would be! If the Earth returned to the prehistoric era, how happy it would be!—If, if, but there has never been an “if” world!


      穿山甲,是固有的“穿”性害了自己嗎?陶弘景也好,李時珍也罷,他們的本意不是把穿山甲斬盡殺絕,而是利用其“穿”性,解除“堵”的問題。但糟糕的是,這個世界“堵”的問題越來越多。因為“堵”,造成了我們肌體內里和靈魂深處的某個地方正在發生著病變——可是,我們什么都看不見了——沒有了方向感,也沒了向內的反省和向外的審視,看不到別人,也看不到自己。我們每天處在焦慮之中,以至于深呼吸都是一種奢侈,甚至需要足夠的勇氣了。


      Pangolin, is your inherent “breaking” (“healing”) characteristic the cause of your own fate? It is noted that both Tao and Li meant not to kill off all the pangolins, but rather to make full use of its “breaking” nature to address the “blockage” issue in humanity. But unfortunately, the human world experiences more prevalent “blockage” problems that cause the pathological change somewhere deep in our physical body and soul. To this change, however, we have turned our back, losing our bearings and the ability to examine ourselves from within and without, and failing to see others and our own self. Agony is haunting us everyday so that taking a deep breath becomes a luxury, and even requires our fight with adequate courage.


      穿山甲的問題,從來就不是它自己的問題,而是我們的問題——無論如何,我們那張貪吃的嘴是擺脫不了干系的。然而,我還是要怯怯地問一句,山林里的蟻族還有那么多嗎?山林里的枯木、倒木還有那么多嗎?生物的多樣性哪里去了?——山林里到底發生了什么事情?當我們為了某個目的,而無休止地使用殺蟲劑或者農藥時,是否也滅掉了穿山甲賴以生存的食物鏈?——我要說,那些看起來溫柔的殺蟲劑和農藥,實際上都是殘忍無比的?!澳芸匆姷亩径疾皇亲疃镜?,看不見的毒才是最毒的?!?


      The pangolin problem has always been the problem not of its own, but within humanity. In any case, it is inextricably related to humanity’s gluttony. What’s more, I’m eager but timid to ask: are there still a lot of ants, and withered and fallen trees in the forest? Where on earth did biological diversity go?—What happened in the forest? For our own selfish purposes, we have utilized insecticides and pesticides endlessly. Have they also exterminated the food chain upon which pangolins rely?—I would say that the so-called “environmentally friendly” insecticides and pesticides are, in fact, extremely atrocious cruelty.—“The visible poison perhaps is not the most toxic while the invisible one is for sure the most toxic.”


      經驗的獲得總是晚了一些。當我們覺得某條經驗有用時,實際上,它已經快沒用了。即便這條經驗上升到冷面的法律層面,即便這條經驗上升到剛性的國際公約層面。


      It is often too late when a lesson is learned. When we feel that some experience is useful, in fact, it may have been useless, even if it rises to be part of code-faced laws, or rigid international convention.


      野生穿山甲在中國絕跡了嗎?我的心里咯噔一下——不會吧?又咯噔一下——也許真的呢?


      Have wild pangolins been extirpated in China? My heart’s undergoing an abrupt flip—could it be true? Another complete somersault hits my heart—Perhaps that is the reality?


      我不敢想下去了——心痛萬分。


      I cannot bear to think further—my heart is completely sunken.


      那個竹籠里穿山甲眼角流著淚滴的畫面,又浮現在眼前。哀婉而悲傷。我在屋里轉著圈圈,一時不知如何是好了。人與穿山甲到底是一種怎樣的關系呢?穿山甲雖然有那么靈巧的舌頭,卻無法告訴我。


      That pangolin in tears in the bamboo cage leaps into my mind’s eye again. Sorrowful and woeful, I walk around in the house, somewhat aimlessly and helpless, pondering: what kind of relationship is it between humans and pangolins? This type of creature, although agile and smart in tongue, is unable to tell me.


      在時間的歷程中,自然有選擇的權利,人類也有選擇的權利。但是,當一個脆弱的物種面對人類無邊的欲望時,它幾乎就沒有什么選擇的權利了。而這種選擇的權利往往只存在人類一方了。


      Over the course of time, nature has had the right to choose, so have human beings. But when a fragile species is confronted with humanity’s boundless desires, it has almost been left with no right to choose. And the right more often than not exists merely on humanity’s side.


      然而,我又分明存著一絲希望——穿山甲是那么堅韌、執拗、憨實,怎么可能說沒就沒了呢?它一定是藏匿于山林深處的某個洞穴里,躲避著我們,躲避著紛擾和喧囂,在孤獨和寂寞中熬著日月。


      However, a glimpse of hope is still carried in me—the pangolin is so tough, stubborn, and honest. How could it be gone? It must be hiding in a cave in the depths of a mountain, avoiding us and the world of hustle and bustle, and living its life in solitude.


      或許,我們是應該放棄一些固有的東西,并且應該承擔起拯救自然的使命和責任了。因為,悲觀和絕望無濟于事——“我們實現明天理想的唯一障礙,就是對今天的疑慮?!?


      Perhaps it is time for us to relinquish something innate, so called “necessity”, and to take responsibility to save our Mother Nature. Because pessimism and despair are of no avail—“The only obstacle to our ideal of tomorrow is the doubt of today.”


      穿穿穿——穿破它。


      Break, break, break—break through it.


      穿穿穿。穿破它的不是穿山甲,不是人類,而是我們那顆日益減少的慈悲之心。


      Break, break, break. Break through it. This “break-through” does not result from the pangolin or humanity itself, but comes in the wake of our dwindling compassion.


      注釋:

       

      * 譯者、金融行業從事者。畢業于中國政法大學。上世紀九十年代移居海外,現定 居加拿大多倫多。

       

      ** 詩人、譯者、學者,英國威爾士班戈大學文學批評與翻譯學博士,廣東外語外貿大學英語語言文化學院教師,闡釋學研究院兼職研究員,碩士研究生導師,英國雙盲審生態批評期刊《生態公民》(The Ecological Citizen)編委會顧問。

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