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貧民臨終

凌風 譯

 

輕步緩行,—低下頭,—
  恭敬肅靜把頭低下,—
沒有敲響喪鐘,
但一個不朽的靈魂,
  現在臨終。

陌生人!不問你如何偉大,
  謙卑恭敬把頭低下;
有一位在那殘破的棚—
在那簡陋的床上—
  比你更大。

在乞丐的屋頂下,
  看哪!死亡的儀式在進行。
進來,沒有群眾參加;
進來,沒有侍衛護駕
  這個 王宮的大門。

地下陰冷潮濕,
  沒有微笑宮廷人士的足跡;
一個靜默的女人站立,
枯瘦的雙手舉起
  首領已經瀕死。

沒有混雜的聲音,—
  獨有一個嬰孩在哭喊;
低掩的飲泣哽咽,—重現
深而短促的喘,最後—
  臨去的呻吟。

啊,改變!啊,奇異的改變!
  衝破監獄的柵欄,—
此時在那裏 那麼低賤,
那麼悲慘,忽然—
  超越星辰之間。

啊,改變!偉大的改變!
  那裏躺臥着失去靈魂的軀殼;
太陽永遠照耀,
新的不朽醒覺,—
  醒起與他的神同在。

 

The Pauper's Death-Bed

Tread softly,— bow the head,—
  In reverent silence bow,—
No passing bell doth toll,
Yet an immortal soul
  Is passing now.

Stranger! however great,
  With lowly reverence bow;
There's one in that poor shed —
One by that paltry bed —
  Greater than thou.

Beneath that beggar's roof,
  Lo! Death doth keep his state.
Enter, no crowds attend;
Enter, no guards defend
  This palace gate.

That pavement, damp and cold,
  No smiling courtiers tread;
One silent woman stands,
Lifting with meagre hands
  A dying head.

No mingling voices sound,—
  An infant wail alone;
A sob suppressed,— again
That short deep gasp, and then —
  The parting groan.

O change! O wondrous change!
  Burst are the prison bars,—
This moment there so low,
So agonized, and now
  Beyond the stars.

O change! stupendous change!
  There lies the soulless clod;
The sun eternal breaks,
The new immortal wakes,—
  Wakes with his God.


Caroline Bowles, 1786-1854
English Poet

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