讀原野長宵 (今日世界 1964再版) 為什麼要這樣翻譯My Antonia 此書我在40年前台中USIS 沒借讀湯新楣的翻譯還不錯引言特好"里"等不一致
LAST summer I happened to be crossing the plains of Iowa in a season
of intense heat, and it was my good fortune to have for a traveling
companion James Quayle Burden—Jim Burden, as we still call him in the
West. He and I are old friends—we grew up together in the same Nebraska
town—and we had much to say to each other. While the train flashed
through never-ending miles of ripe wheat, by country towns and
bright-flowered pastures and oak groves wilting in the sun, we sat in
the observation car, where the woodwork was hot to the touch and red
dust lay deep over everything. The dust and heat, the burning wind,
reminded us of many things. We were talking about what it is like to
spend one's childhood in little towns like these, buried in wheat and
corn, under stimulating extremes of climate: burning summers when the
world lies green and billowy beneath a brilliant sky, when one is fairly
stifled in vegetation, in the color and smell of strong weeds and heavy
harvests; blustery winters with little snow, when the whole country is
stripped bare and gray as sheet-iron. We agreed that no one who had not
grown up in a little prairie town could know anything about it. It was a
kind of freemasonry, we said.
When Jim was still an obscure young lawyer, struggling to make his way
in New York, his career was suddenly advanced by a brilliant marriage.
Genevieve Whitney was the only daughter of a distinguished man. Her
marriage with young Burden was the subject of sharp comment at the time.
It was said she had been brutally jilted by her cousin, Rutland Whitney,
and that she married this unknown man from the West out of bravado. She
was a restless, headstrong girl, even then, who liked to astonish
her friends. Later, when I knew her, she was always doing something
unexpected. She gave one of her town houses for a Suffrage headquarters,
produced one of her own plays at the Princess Theater, was arrested
for picketing during a garment-makers' strike, etc.