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安徒生童话故事全集英文版:THE CRIPPLE

2019-03-14 15:33

来源:新东方网整理

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  THERE was an old country-house which belonged toyoung,wealthy people.They had riches and blessings,they liked to enjoy themselves,but they did good as well, they wished to make everybody as happy as they werethemselves.

  On Christmas Eve a beautifully decorated Christmas-tree stood in the old hall,where the fire burned in thechimney,and fir branches were hung round the old pic-tures.Here were assembled the family and their guests,and there was dancing and singing.

  Earlier in the evening there had been Christmas gaietyin the servants'hall.Here also was a great fir-tree withred and white candles,small Danish flags,swans and fish-ing-nets,cut out of coloured paper,and fined with"good-ies".The poor children from the neighbourhood were invit- ed,every one had his mother with him.The mothers didnot look much at the Christmas-tree,but at the Christmastable,where there lay linen and woollen cloth-stuff forgowns and stuff for trousers.They and the bigger childrenlooked there,only the very little ones stretched out theirhands to the candles,and the tinsel and flags.

  The whole party came early in the afternoon and gotChristmas porridge and roast goose with red cabbage.Thenwhen the Christmas-tree was seen and the gifts distributed, each got a little glass of punch with apple fritters.Thenthey went back to their own poor homes and talked of thegood living,that is to say good things to eat;and the giftswere once more inspected.There were now Garden Kirstenand Garden Ole.They were married,and had their houseand daily bread for weeding and digging in the garden ofthe big house.Every Christmas festival they got a goodshare of the gifts;they had five children,and all of themwere clothed by the family.

  "They are generous people,our master and mistress!" said they,"but they have the means to be so,and theyhave pleasure in doing it."

  "Here are good clothes for the four children towear,"said Ole;"but why is there nothing for the'crip-ple'?They used to think about him too,although he wasnot at the festival."

  It was the eldest of the children they called"TheCripple",he was called Hans otherwise.

  As a little boy,he was the smartest and liveliestchild,but he became all at once"loose in the legs",asthey call it,he could neither walk nor stand,and now hehad been lying in bed for five years.

  "Yes,I got something for him too,"said the moth-er,"but it is nothing much,it is only a book to read."

  "He won't get fat on that,"said the father.

  But Hans was glad of it.He was a very clever boywho liked to read,but used his time also for working,sofar as one who must always lie in bed could be useful.Hewas very handy,and knitted woollen stockings,and evenbedcovers.The lady at the big house had praised andbought them.It was a story-book Hans had got;in itthere was much to read and much to think about.

  "It is not of any kind of use here in the house,"said his parents,"but let him read,it passes the time,he cannot always be knitting stockings!"

  The spring came;flowers and green leaves began tosprout—the weeds also,as one may call the nettles,although the psalm speaks so nicely of them.

  Though kings in all their power and might

  Came forth in splendid row,

  They could not make the smallest leaf

  Upon a nettle grow.

  There was much to do in the garden,not only forthe gardener and his apprentice,but also for Kirsten andOle.

  "It is perfect drudgery,"said they."We have nosooner raked the paths and made them nice,than they arejust trodden down again.There is such a run of visitorsup at the house.How much it must cost!But the familyare rich people!"

  "Things are badly divided,"said Ole;"the priestsays we are all our Father's children,why the differencethen?"

  "It comes from the Fall!"said Kirsten.

  They talked about it again in the evening,wherecripple Hans lay with his story-book.

  Straitened circumstances,work,and drudgery,hadmade the parents not only hard in the hands,but also intheif opinions and judgements;they could not grasp it, could not explain it,and made themselves more peevishand angry as they talked.

  "Some people get prosperity and happiness,othersonly poverty!Why should our first parents'disobedienceand curiosity be visited upon us?We would not have be-haved ourselves as they did!"

  "Yes,we would!"said cripple Hans,all at once."Itis all here in the book."

  "What is in the book?"asked the parents.

  And Hans read for them the old story of the wood-cut-ter and his wife.They also scolded about Adam's andEve's curiosity,which was the cause of their misfortune. The king of the country came past just then."Come homewith me,"said he,"then you shall have it as good as I;seven courses for dinner and a course for show.That is in aclosed tureen,and you must not touch it;for if you do,itis all over with your grandeur.""What can there be in thetureen?"said the wife."That does not concern us,"saidthe man."Yes,I am not inquisitive,"said the wife,"butI would only like to know why we dare not lift the lid;it iscertainly something delicate!""If only it is not somethingmechanical,"said the man,"such as a pistol,which goesoff and wakens the whole house.""O my!"said the wife, and did not touch the tureen.But during the night shedreamt that the lid lifted itself,and from the tureen came asmell of the loveliest punch,such as one gets at weddingsand funerals.There lay a big silver shilling with the in-scription,"Drink of this punch,and you will become thetwo richest people in the world,and everybody else willbecome beggars!"—and the wife wakened at once andtold her husband her dream."You think too much aboutthe thing!"said he."We could lift it gently,"said thewife."Gently,"said the man,and the wife then liftedthe lid very gently.Then two little active mice sprangout,and ran at once into a mouse-hole."Good night,"said the king."Now you can go home and lie in your ownbed.Don't scold Adam and Eve any more,you your-selves have been as inquisitive and ungrateful!"

  "From where has that story come in the book?"saidOle."It looks as if it concerned us.It is something tothink about!"

  Next day they went to work again;they were roastedby the sun,and soaked to the skin with rain;in themwere fretful thoughts,and they ruminated on them.

  It was still quite light at home after they had eatentheir milk porridge.

  "Read the story of the woodcutter to us again,"saidOle.

  "There are so many nice ones in the book,"saidHans,"so many,you don't know."

  "Yes,but I don't care about them,"said Ole,"Iwant to hear the one I know."

  And he and his wife listened to it again.

  More than one evening they returned to the story.

  "It cannot quite make everything clear to me,"saidOle."It is with people as with sweet milk,which sours;some become fine cheese,and others the thin,waterywhey;some people have luck in everything,sit at thehigh-table every day,and know neither sorrow nor want."

  Cripple Hans heard that.He was weak in the legs,but clever in the head.He read to them from his story-book,read about"The man without sorrow or want".Where was he to be found,for found he must be!

  The king lay sick and could not be cured,except bybeing dressed in the shirt which had been worn on thebody of a man who could truthfully say that he had neverknown sorrow or want.

  Messages were sent to all the countries in the world,to all castles and estates,to all prosperous and happymen,but when it was properly investigated, every one ofthem had experienced sorrow and want.

  "That I have not!"said the swineherd who sat in theditch and laughed and sang,"I am the happiest man!"

  "Then give us your shirt,"said the king's messen-gers."You shall be paid for it with the half of the king-dom."

  But he had no shirt,and yet he called himself thehappiest man.

  "That was a fine fellow,"shouted Ole,and he andhis wife laughed as they had not laughed for a year and aday.Then the schoolmaster came past.

  "How you are enjoying yourselves!"said he,"that issomething new in this house.Have you won a prize in thelottery!"

  "No,we are not of that kind,"said Ole."It is Hanswho has been reading his story-book to us,about'The manwithout sorrow or want',and the fellow had no shirt.One' s eyes get moist when one hears such things,and that froma printed book.Every one has his load to draw,one is notalone in that.That is always a comfort."

  "Where did you get that book?"asked the schoolmas-ter.

  "Our Hans got it more than a year ago at Christmas-time.The master and mistress gave it to him.They knowthat he likes reading so much,and he is a cripple.Wewould rather have seen him get two linen shirts at the time. But the book is wonderful,it can almost answer one'sthoughts."

  The schoolmaster took the book and opened it.

  "Let us have the same story again!"said Ole,"Ihave not quite taken it in yet.Then he must also read theother about the wood-cutter!"

  These two stories were enough for Ole.They were liketwo sunbeams coming into the poor room,into the stuntedthought which made him so cross and ill-natured.Hans hadread the whole book,read it many times.The stories car-ried him out into the world,there,where he could not go, because his legs would not carry him.

  The schoolmaster sat by his bed:they talked togeth-er,and it was a pleasure for both of them.

  From that day the schoolmaster came oftener toHans,when the parents were at work.It was a treat forthe boy,every time he came.How he listened to what theold man told him,about the size of the world and itsmany countries,and that the sun was almost half a mil-lion times bigger than the earth,and so far away that acannonball in its course would take a whole twenty-fiveyears to come from the sun to the earth whilst the beamsof light could come in eight minutes.

  Every industrious schoolboy knew all that,but forHans it was all new,and still more;wonderful than whatwas in the story-book.

  The schoolmaster dined with the squire's family twoor three times a year,and he told how much importancethe story-book had in the poor house,where two stories init alone had been the means of spiritual awakening andblessing.The weakly,clever little boy had with his read-ing brought reflection and joy into the house.

  When the schoolmaster went away,the lady pressedtwo or three silver dollars into his hand for the littleHans.

  "Father and mother must have them!"said Hans,when the schoolmaster brought the money.

  And Ole and kirsten said,"Cripple Hans after all isa profit and a blessing."

  Two or three days after,when the parents were atwork at the big house,the squire's carriage stopped out-side.It was the kind-hearted lady who came,glad thather Christmas present had been such a comfort and plea-sure for the boy and his parents.She brought with herfine bread,fruit,and a bottle of fruit syrup,but whatwas still more delightful she brought him,in a gilt cage,a little blackbird,which could whistle quite charmingly.The cage with the bird was set up on the old clothe-chest,a little bit away from the boy's bed;he could see thebird and hear it;even the people out in the road couldhear its song.

  Ole and kirsten came home after the lady had drivenaway;they noticed how glad Hans was,but thought therewould only be trouble with the present he had got.

  "Rich people don't have much foresight!"saidthey.

  "Shall we now have that to look after also?CrippleHans cannot do it.The end will be that the cat will takeit!"

  Eight days passed,and still another eight days:thecat had in that time been often in the room without fright-ening the bird,to say nothing of hurting it.Then a greatevent happened.It was afternoon.The parents and the oth-er children were at work,Hans was quite alone;he had thestory-book in his hand,and read about the fisherwomanwho got everything she wished for;she wished to be aking,and that she became;she wished to be an emperor,and that she became;but when she wished to become thegood God,then she sat once more in the muddy ditch shehad come from.

  The story had nothing to do with the bird or the cat,but it was just the story he was reading when the incidenthappened:he always remembered that afterwards.

  The cage stood on the chest,the cat stood on thefloor and stared at the bird with his greeny-gold eyes.There was something in the cat's face which seemed tosay,"How lovely you are!How I should like to eat you!"

  Hans could understand that;he read it in the cat'sface.

  "Be off,cat!"he shouted,"will you go out of theroom?"

  It seemed as if it were just about to spring.

  Hans could not get at him,and he had nothing elseto throw at him but his dearest treasure,the story-book. He threw that,but the binding was loose,and it flew toone side,and the book itself with all its leaves flew tothe other.The cat went with slow steps a little back intothe room,and looked at Hans as much as to say,

  "Don't mix yourself up in this affair,little Hans!Ican walk,and I can spring,and you can do neither."

  Hans kept his eye on the cat and was greatly dis-tressed;the bird was also anxious.There was no onethere to call;it seemed as if the cat knew it:it prepareditself again to spring.Hans shook the bed-cover at him;his hands he could use;but the cat paid no attention tothe bed-cover;and when it was also thrown at him with-out avail,he sprang upon the chair and into the window-sill,where he was nearer to the bird.

  Hans could feel his own warm blood in himself, but

  he did not think of that, he thought only about the cat

  and the bird;the hoy could not help himself out of bed,could not stand on his legs, still less walk. It seemed asif his heart turned inside him when he saw the cat spring from the window,right on to the chest and push the cage so that it was upset. The bird fluttered wildly about in-side.

  Hans gave a scream; something gave a tug inside him,and without thinking about it, he jumped out of bed, flew across to the chest, tore the cat down, and gothold of the cage, where the bird was in a great fright.Heheld the cage in his hand and ran with it out of the door and out on to the road.

  Then the tears streamed out of his eyes; he shouted with joy,"I can walk!I can walk!"

  He had recovered his activity again;such things can happen, and it had happened to him.

  The schoolmaster lived close by; Hans ran in to himwith his bare feet, with only his shirt and jacket on,andwith the bird in the cage.

  "I can walk!" he shouted." My God!" and hesobbed and wept with joy.

  And there was joy in the house of Ole and Kirsten.

  "A more joyful day we could not see,"said both of them.

  Hans was called up to the big house; he had not gone that way for many years; it seemed as if the trees and the nut bushes, which he knew so well, nodded tohim and said,"Good day, Hans, welcome here!" The sun shone on his face as well as in his heart.

  The master and mistress let him sit with them, and looked as glad as if he had belonged to their own family.

  Gladdest of all was the lady, who had given him the story book,given him the singing-bird, which was now as a matter of fact dead, dead of fright, but it had been themeans of restoring him to health, and the book had brought the awakening of the parents: he had the book still, and he would keep it and read it if he were ever soold. Now he could be a benefit to those at home. He would learn a trade, by preference a bookbinder,"be- cause," said he,"I can get all the new books to read!"

  In the afternoon the lady called both parents up toher.She and her husband had talked together about hans;he was a wise and clever boy: had pleasure in reading,and ability.

  That evening the parents came home joyfully from the farm,Kirsten in particular,but the week after she wept, for then little Hans went away: he was dressed in good clothes; he was a good boy; but now he must go away across the salt water,far away to school,and many years would pass before they would see him again.

  He did not get the story-book with him, the parents kept that for remembrance. And the father often read in it,but nothing except the two stories, for he knew them.

  And they got lettetd from Hans,each one gladder than the last.He was with fine people,in good circum- stances, and it was most delightful to go to school; therewas so much to learn and to know; he only wanted to re- main there a hundred years and then be a schoohmaster.

  "If we should live to see it!"said the parents, and pressed each other's hands, as if at communion.

  "To think of what has happened to Hans!" said Ole."Our Father thinks also of the poor man's child! And that it should happen just with the cripple! Is it not as if Hanswere to read it for us out of the story-book?"

  跛子

  在一幢古老的乡间公馆里住着有钱的年轻人。他们既富有,也幸福。他们自己享受快乐,也对别人做好事。他们希望所有的人都像他们自己一样愉快。

  在圣诞节的晚上,古老的大厅里立着一棵打扮得很漂亮的圣诞树。壁炉里烧着熊熊的大火,古老的画框上悬着枞树枝。主人和客人都在这儿;他们唱歌和跳舞。

  天还没有黑,佣人的房间里已经庆祝过圣诞节了。那里也有一棵很大的枞树,上面点着红白蜡烛,还有小型的丹麦国旗、天鹅、用彩色纸剪出和装着“好东西”的网袋。邻近的穷苦孩子都被请来了;他们的妈妈也一起来了。妈妈们并不怎么望着圣诞树,却望着圣诞桌。桌上放着呢料子和麻布——这都是做衣服和裤子的衣料,她们和大孩子都望着这些东西,只有小孩子才把手伸向蜡烛、银纸和国旗。

  这些人到得很早,下午就来了;他们吃了圣诞粥、烤鹅和红白菜。大家参观了圣诞树,得到了礼品;然后就每人喝一杯潘趣酒,吃一块煎苹果元宵。

  他们回到自己简陋的家里去,一路谈论着这种“舒服的生活”——也就是指他们吃过了的好东西,他们又把礼品重新仔细地看了一次。

  他们之中有一位园丁奥列和一位园丁叔斯玎。他们两人是夫妇。他们为这公馆的花园锄草和挖土,所以他们能领到房子住和粮食吃。在每个圣诞节,他们总会得到很多礼物。他们的五个孩子所穿的衣服就都是主人送的。

  “我们的两个主人都喜欢做好事!”他们说。“不过他们有力量这样做,而且他们也高兴这样做!”

  “这是四个孩子穿的好衣服,”园丁奥列说。“但是为什么没有一点东西给跛子呢?他们平时也想到他,虽然他没有去参加庆祝!”

  这是指他们最大的那个孩子。他的名字是汉斯,但大家都叫他“跛子”。

  他很小的时候,是非常聪明活泼的。不过后来,正如人们所说的那样,他的腿子忽然“软了”。他既不能走路,也不能站稳。他躺在床上已经有五年了。

  “是的,我得到一件给他的东西!”妈妈说。“不过这不是一件了不起的东西。这是一本书,他可以读读!”

  “这东西并不能使他发胖!”爸爸说。

  不过汉斯倒很喜欢它。他是一个很聪明的小孩子,喜欢读书,但是他也花些时间去做些有用的工作——一个躺在床上的孩子所能做的有用的工作。他的一双手很灵巧,会织毛袜,甚至床毯。邸宅的女主人称赞过和买过这些东西。

  汉斯所得到的是一本故事书,书里值得读和值得思索的东西不少。

  “在这个屋子里它没有一点用处,”爸爸和妈妈异口同声他说,“不过让他读吧,这可以使他把时间混过去,他不能老织袜子呀!”

  春天来了。花朵开始含苞欲放,树木开始长出新绿,野草也是一样——人们也许会把荨麻叫做野草,虽然《圣诗集》上把它形容得这样美:

  即使所有帝王一齐出马, 无论怎样豪华和有力量, 但他们一点也没有办法去使叶子在荨麻上生长。

  公馆花园里的工作很多,不仅对园丁和他的助手是如此,对园丁奥列和园丁叔斯玎也是这样。

  “这件工作真是枯燥得很!”他们说。“我们刚刚把路耙好,弄得整齐一点,马上就有人把它踩坏了。公馆里来往的客人真是太多了。钱一定花得不少!不过主人有的是钱!”

  “东西分配得真不平均!”奥列说。“牧师说我们都是上帝的女儿,为什么我们之间有这些差别呢?”

  “这是因为人堕落的缘故!”叔斯玎说。

  他们在晚间又谈起这事。这时跛子汉斯正拿着他的故事书在旁边躺着。

  困难的生活和繁重的工作,不仅使爸爸妈妈的手变得粗糙,也使他们的思想和看法变得生硬。他们不能理解、也不能解释这种道理。他们变得更喜欢争吵和生气。

  “有的人得到快乐和幸福,有的人只得到贫困!我们最初的祖先很好奇,并且违抗上帝,但是为什么要我们来负责呢?我们不会做出他们两人那样的行为呀!”

  “我们会的!”跛子汉斯忽然冒出这一句来。“这本书里说过。”

  “这本书里写的是什么呢?”爸爸和妈妈问。

  于是汉斯就念一个古老的故事给他们听,这故事说的是一个樵夫和他妻子的故事。他们也责骂过亚当和夏娃的好奇心,因为这就是他们不幸的根源。国王这时正从旁边走过。“跟我一道回家去吧,”他说,“你们也可以像我一样过好日子:一餐吃七个菜,还有一个莱摆摆样子。这个莱放在盖碗里,但是你们不能动它,因为动一动,你的富贵就没有了。”“盖碗里可能盛的是什么呢?”妻子说。“这跟我们无关,”丈夫说。“是的,我并不好奇!”妻子说,“但是我倒想知道,为什么我们不能揭开盖子。那里面一定是好吃的东西!”“只希望不是机器一类的东西!”丈夫说,“像一把手枪,它砰地一下,就把全家的人都吵醒了。”“哎呀!”妻子说,再也不敢动那盖碗了。不过在这天晚上,她梦见碗盖自动开了,一种最美的潘趣酒的香气从碗里飘出来——像人们在结婚或举行葬礼时所喝到的那种潘趣酒的香气。里面有一枚大银毫,上面写着:“你们喝了这潘趣酒,就可以成为世界上最富有的人,而别的人则都成为乞丐!”于是妻子就醒了,把这个梦讲给丈夫听。“你把这事情想得太多了!”他说。“我们可以把盖子轻轻地揭开!”妻子说。“轻轻地揭!”丈夫说。于是妻子就轻轻地把盖子揭开。这时有两只活泼的小耗子跳出来,马上逃到一个耗子洞里去了。“晚安!”国王说。“你们现在可以回家去睡觉了。请不要再责骂亚当和夏娃吧。你们自己就好奇和忘恩负义呀!”

  “书里讲的这个故事是从哪里来的呢?”奥列说。“它似乎跟我们有关,值得想一想!”

  第二天,他们仍然去干活。先是太阳烤着他们,然后雨把他们淋得透湿。他们满脑子都是不愉快的思想——他们现在细嚼着这些思想。

  回到家里,当他们吃完了牛奶粥的时候,天还没有太黑。

  “把那个樵夫的故事再念给我们听听吧!”奥列说。

  “书里好听的故事多着呢!”汉斯说,“非常多,你们都不知道!”

  “我们对别的故事不感到兴趣!”园丁奥列说。“我只要听我所听过的那个故事!”

  于是他和他的妻子又听一次。

  他们不止一个晚上重新听了这个故事。

  “我还是不能完全了解,”奥列说。“人就像甜牛奶一样,有时会发酸。有的变成很好的干酪,有的变成又薄又稀的乳浆!有的做什么都走运,一生过好日子,从来不知道忧愁和穷困!”

  跛子汉斯听到这话。他的腿虽然不中用,可是头脑很聪明。他把书里的故事念给他们听——他念一个不知忧愁和穷困的人。这个人在什么地方可以找到呢?因为应该把这个人找出来才对。

  国王躺在床上病了,只有这样一个方法可以治好他:穿上一件衬衫,而这件衬衫必须是一个真正不知忧愁和穷困的人穿过的。

  这个消息传到世界各国去,传到所有的王宫和公馆里去,最后被传给一切富足和快乐的人。不过仔细检查的结果,差不多每个人都尝过忧愁和穷困的味道。

  “我可没有!”坐在田沟上一个欢笑和唱歌的猪倌说。“我是最幸福的人!”

  “那么请把你的衬衫给我吧,”国王的使者说。“你可以得到半个王国作为报酬。”

  但是他没有衬衫,而他却自己认为是最快乐的人。

  “这倒是一个好汉!”园丁奥列大声说。他和他的妻子大笑起来,好像他们多少年来都没有笑过似的。

  这时小学的老师在旁边走过。

  “你们真知道快乐!”他说。“这倒是这家里的一件新鲜事情。难道你们中了一张彩票不成?”

  “没有,不是这么回事儿!”园丁奥列说。“汉斯在念故事书给我们听;他念一个不知忧愁和穷困的人的故事。这个人没有衬衫穿。这个故事可以叫人流出眼泪——而且是一个印在书上的故事。每个人都要扛起自己的担子,他并不是单独如此。这总算是一种安慰!”

  “你们从什么地方得到这本书的?”老师问。

  “一年多以前,我们的汉斯在圣诞节得到的。是主人夫妇送给他的。他们知道他非常喜欢读书,而他是一个跛子!我们那时倒希望他得到两件麻布衬衫呢!不过这书很特别。它能解决你的思想问题。”

  老师把书接过来,翻开看看。

  “让我们把这故事再听一次吧!”园丁奥列说。“我还没有完全听懂。他也应该念那另外一个关于樵夫的故事!”

  对于奥列说来,这两个故事已经够了。它们像两道阳光一样,射进这贫困的屋子里来,射进使他们经常生气和不愉快的那种苦痛的思想中来。

  汉斯把整本书都读完了,读过好几次。书里的故事把他带到外面的世界里去——到他所不能去的地方去,因为他的腿不能行走。

  老师坐在他的床旁边。他们在一起闲谈,这对于他们两人是很愉快的事情。

  从这天起,爸爸妈妈出去工作的时候,老师就常来看他。他的来访,对这孩子说来,简直是像一次宴会,他静心地听这老师讲的许多话:地球的体积和它上面的许多国家;太阳比地球差不多要大50万倍,而且距离是那么远,要从太阳达到地面,一颗射出的抱弹得走整整25年,而光只要走8分钟。

  每个用功的学生都知道这些事情,但是对于汉斯说来,这都是新奇的东西——比那本故事书上讲的东西要新奇得多。

  老师每年被请到主人家里去吃两三次饭,他说这本故事书在那个贫穷的家里是多么重要,仅仅书里的两个故事就能使得他们获得精神上的觉醒和快乐。那个病弱而聪明的孩子每次念起这些故事时,家里的人就变得深思和快乐起来。

  当老师离开这公馆的时候,女主人塞了两三块亮晶晶的银洋在他手里,请他带给小小的汉斯。

  “应该交给爸爸和妈妈!”当老师把钱带来的时候,孩子说。

  于是园丁奥列和园丁叔斯玎说:“跛子汉斯也带来报酬和幸福!”

  两三天以后,当爸爸妈妈正在公馆的花园里工作的时候,主人和马车在门外停了下来。走进来的是那位好心肠的太太;她很高兴,她的圣诞节礼物居然带给孩子和他的父母那么多的安慰和快乐。她带来了细面包、水果和一瓶糖浆。不过她送给汉斯的最可爱的一件东西是一只关在金笼子里的小黑鸟。它能唱出相当好听的歌。鸟笼放在一个旧衣柜上,离这孩子的床不远:他既能望望它,也可以听听它的歌。的确,在外面路上走的人都能听到它的歌声。

  园丁奥列和园丁叔斯玎回到家里来的时候,太太已经走了。他们看见汉斯一副高兴的样子,不过他们也觉得,他所得到的这件礼物却会带来麻烦。

  “有钱人总是看得不很远的!”他们说。

  “我们还得照顾这只鸟儿。跛子汉斯是没有办法做这事情的。结果它一定会被猫儿抓去吃掉!”

  八天过去了,接着又有八天过去了。这时猫儿已经到房间里来过好几次;它并没有把鸟儿吓坏,更没有伤害它。接着一件大事情发生了。时间是下午。爸爸妈妈和别的孩子都去做工作去了,汉斯单独一个人在家。他手里拿着那本故事书,正在读一个关于渔妇的故事:她得到了她所希望的一切东西。她希望做一个皇帝,于是她就做了一个皇帝。但是她接着想做善良的上帝——于是她马上又坐到她原来的那个泥巴沟里去。

  这个故事跟鸟儿和猫儿没有什么关系,不过当事情发生的时候,他正在读这故事。他后来永远也忘记不了。

  鸟笼是放在衣柜上;猫是站在地板上,正在用一双绿而带黄的眼睛盯着鸟儿。猫儿的脸上有一种表情,似乎是在对鸟儿说,“你是多么可爱啊!我真想吃你!”

  汉斯懂得这意思,因为他可以在猫的面孔上看得出来。

  “猫儿,滚开!”他大声说。“请你从房里滚出去!”

  它似乎正在准备跳。

  汉斯没有办法走近它。除了他的那件最心爱的宝物——故事书——以外,他没有什么东西可以向它扔去。他把它扔过去,不过书的装订已经散了,封皮飞向一边,那一页页的书本身飞向另一边。猫儿在房间里慢慢地向后退了几步,盯着汉斯,好像是说:

  “小小的汉斯,请你不要干涉这件事!我可以走,也可以跳,你哪一样也不会!”

  汉斯双眼盯着猫儿,心中感到非常苦恼,鸟儿也很焦急。附近也没有什么人可以喊。猫儿似乎了解到了这种情况;它准备再跳。汉斯挥动着被单,因为他还可以使用他的手。但是猫儿对于被单一点也不在乎。当被单扔到它旁边来,没有发生一点作用的时候,它一纵就跳上椅子,站在窗台上,离鸟儿更近了。

  汉斯感到他身体里的血在沸腾。但是他没有考虑到自己,他只是想着猫儿和鸟儿。这孩子没有办法跳下床来,没有办法用腿站着,更不用说走路了。当他看见猫儿从窗台上跳到柜子上,把鸟笼推翻了的时候,他的心似乎在旋转。鸟儿在笼子里疯狂地飞起来。

  汉斯尖叫了一声。他感到身体里有一种震动;这时他也顾不上这一点,就从床上跳下来,向衣柜跑过去,把笼子一把抓住——鸟儿已经吓坏了。他手里拿着笼子,跑出门外,一直向大路上跑去。

  这时眼泪从他的眼睛里流出来了。他惊喜得发狂,高声地喊:“我能走路了!我能走路了!”

  他现在恢复健康了。这种事情是可能发生的,而现在却在他身上发生了。

  小学老师住得离这儿不远。汉斯打着赤脚,只穿着衬衫和上衣,提着鸟笼,向他跑去。

  “我能走路了!”他大声说。“我的上帝啊!”

  于是他快乐得哭起来了。

  园丁奥列和园丁叔斯玎的家里现在充满了快乐。

  “今天我们真是再快乐不过了!”他们两人齐声说。

  汉斯被喊到那个公馆里去。这条路他好几年没有走了。他所熟识的那些树和硬果灌木林似乎在对他点头,说:“日安,汉斯!欢迎你到这儿来!”太阳照在他的脸上,也照进他的心里。

  公馆里的主人——一对年轻幸福的夫妇——叫他跟他们坐在一起。他们的样子很高兴,好像他就是他们家庭的一员似的。

  最高兴的是那位太太,因为她曾经送给他那本故事书和那只歌鸟——这鸟儿事实上已经死了,吓死了,不过它使他恢复了健康;那本故事书也使他的父母得到启示。他现在还保存着这本书;他要读它——不管年纪变得多大,他都要读。从此以后,他在家里也是一个有用的人了。他要学一门手艺,而他所喜欢的是当一个订书工人。他说:“因为这样我就可以读到所有的新书啦!”

  这天下午,女主人把他的爸爸和妈妈都喊去。她和她的丈夫谈过关于汉斯的事情。他是一个聪明的好孩子,喜欢读书,也有欣赏的能力。[上帝总会成全好事的。] 爸爸妈妈这天晚上从那个农庄里回到家里,非常高兴,特别是叔斯玎。不过一个星期以后,她哭起来了,因为小汉斯要离开家。他穿着新衣服,他是一个好孩子;但是现在他要横渡大海,到远方一个学校里去[,而且还要学习拉丁文。]他们要在许多年以后才能再看见他。

  他没有把那本故事书带去,因为爸爸妈妈要把它留下来作为纪念。爸爸常常读它,但是只读那两篇故事,因为他懂得这两篇。

  他们接到汉斯的信——一封比一封显得快乐。他是跟可爱的人住在一起,生活得很好。他最喜欢上学校读书,因为值得学习和知道的东西实在太多了。他希望在学校里住100年,然后成为一个教师。

  “我们只希望我们那时还活着!”爸爸妈妈说。他们紧握着手,似乎是心照不宣。

  “请想想汉斯这件事情吧!”奥列说。“上帝也想起穷人家的孩子!而且事情恰恰发生在跛子身上!这不是很像汉斯从那本故事书中念给我们听的一个故事么?”

  这篇故事发表在1872年哥本哈根出版的《新的童话和故事集》第3卷第2部,实际写作的时间是1872年7月 12—18日。安徒生一贯同情贫困的、无助的、渺小的人物,总希望他们能够解脱困境,过上幸福的生活。但他自己都无力改变这种境遇,只能把希望寄托在“上帝”身上。这个故事中的跛子,因为他心地好,读“上帝”的书,终于发生了奇迹:他能自由行走了,成了正常的人,也得到了正常人所应得到的“幸福”。

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