Black Horse

来源:www.putclub.com 2019-03-23

 

Jed got to the top of the mountain and sat down to rest. The July sun had made him hot.

It had been a long walk to the top and he was tired. He knew the horse he was trying to capture could not be too far away. He looked at the mountain and the valleys below, searching footmarks left by the horse.

Then he saw the marks going down the other side of the mountain. He must capture the horse. He knew better men than he had tried. Tom Raglan, the best rancher in the state, had tried with the help of his cowboys.

But they had not been able to capture it. It had gotten away from others, too. They all said it was too wild. It could not be captured.

After a slow, painful walk down the mountain, Jed came to a cool-looking river. He drank the clear water.

Further down the valley he saw the black horse. It stood under a tree out of the sun. Jed moved closer, then hid behind a tree to watch. It was the biggest and blackest and blackest he had ever seen.

Jed knew all about horse. He had grown into a man caring for them. He had never earned more than '10 but he had dreams: If he could get a male and female house and 10 hectares of land, he could sell horses. That would be all the happiness Jed wanted.

Night came. The big black house moved from under the tree and began to eat grass near the river. Jed watched again. A few hours later, he found a soft place in the ground. He placed his head against an old fallen tree and slept.

The next day he woke with the sun. His eyes searched for the horse, and there it was, grazing. Jed saw how it ate, then lifted its head and looked all around. It was the mark of the wild, always looking for hidden danger.

Jed started to walk toward the horse. The horse stopped eating and looking at Jed. Jed's heart began to beat heavily. Men had said the horse was a killer. Still, he walked closer.

Fifteen meters away from the horse Jed stopped. The horse had lifted its front feet high in the air, then placed them heavily back on the ground. Jed moved closer. He talked to the horse in a soft voice.

Then, with a loud scream, the horse turned and ran down the valley. Jed sank to the ground wet with excitement. He had done what no man had done.

He had almost touched the wild horse. The animal was not a killer. If it had been, Jed would be dead now.

For six days he followed the horse. He rested when the horse rested. Jed did not like the land they were in now. The sides of the valley were high and filled with big rocks. Few trees were around. And the bottom of the valley was soft and wet.

Jed watched the horse a while, and then lay down to sleep.

In the middle of the night, he was awakened by thunder and rain. He walked up the rocks until he found a dry hole, safe from the rain, and he slept again.

The next day was cold and wet. Heavy rains had softened the bottom of the valley. He followed the house most of the day. The wet valley was the only place it could walk now.

The sides of the valley had gotten higher. Toward evening he saw it again. But this time there was fear in its face. He stopped and watched. The horse's nose was smelling the air. It smelled danger. It smelled danger.

Jed thought of wild animals, a wildcat or bear maybe. He pulled his knife from his pants. He looked among the rocks but saw nothing.

He began walking toward the horse. The wildcat could have been on either side of the valley. He walked slowly, trying to watch both sides at the same time.

Slowly he came to the horse's side. Jed kept watching the rocks. If the cat was going to attack, it would do it now. He felt the excitement of danger.

#p#副标题#e#Suddenly the silence was broken. The black horse screamed loudly, a cry of fear. It began running down the wet valley.

At the same time there was a heavy, deep noise from the rocks. Then it happened. Tons of wet earth and big rocks began moving down the sides of the mountain. The land itself was the enemy.

When the air became clear, Jed looked for the horse. In front of him were tons of the fallen earth. He could not see down the valley and could not see the horse.

He slowly climbed over the fallen rocks. On the other side was the horse, more frightened than ever. Its legs were stuck in the soft earth and it could not move. The more it struggled, the deeper it sank in the mud.

Jed walked toward the animal. Each step he took, the soft mud tried to suck him down, too. He walked on the grassy places harder than the mud.

When he got to the horse, it was in the mud up to his stomach. Now it could move only its head. Jed felt wildly happy when he touched the horse. “Don't struggle and do not worry, Horse! I'll get you out!”

Suddenly he felt the horses teeth on his arm. He bit his lip to stop it from crying aloud. His free hand gently calmed the horse and slowly it let go. It pressed its nose against Jed's face. At last they were friends.

Now Jed could go to work. He studied the problem carefully. He had no way to lift the big horse from the mud. Certainly his rope was not strong enough.

Only this time, he placed rocks in the holes he dug. The rocks stayed still and slowly a wall began to form. He did this through the day and when night came, his hands were bloody, torn by the sharp rocks.

He knew night would be a bad time for the horse. He did not want it to become frightened and struggle against the wall of rock he was building in the mud.

He cut some small trees, laid them on the ground next to the horse and all through the night, he spoke soft, kind words to it to calm its fears.

The next morning, he brought grass for it to eat and began his work again. It was slow, hard work. When night came, he lay next to the horse again. He did not want it to struggle yet. The time had not come for the test.

By the middle of the next day, he had enough rocks in the mud on one side of the horse. Now he began to dig near the houses front legs. His rocks began to make the mud harder. The horse was able to move a little.

And when the pressure became less, it raised one of its front legs on to the rocks. It pushed against the rocks on its side and lifted its body a little out of the mud.

Jed got his rope and tied it around the horses neck. He began to pull on the rope.

The horse felt the pull and struggled with all its power against the mud. It raised its other front leg on the rocks and with a mighty push with its back legs and with Jed pulling on its neck, it moved forward toward hard land.

Jed fell on the earth, happy but tired. He had not eaten for three days. He had slept little. Half sleep, he felt the horses nose push against his face. He jumped to his feet and when he brought grass for the horse it made friendly noises and playfully pushed him.

A week later, a big black horse rode on the land owned by Tom Raglan. It stopped near the ranch house. A little man got off the horses back. Tom Raglan looked at the horse with eyes that did not believe. Finally he said: "You got him."

"I got him, Tom, and I brought him back as I said I would."

Raglan looked at the horse. Above all, he was a horseman and there was no need for Jed to tell him how he captured it. Jed's tired face, his torn hands, dirty clothes and thin body told the story.

Jed,” Raglan said. “that horse will kill anyone except you. I do not want it. But I have not forgotten my promise."

"I will give you some land and the old house in back of the ranch if you will keep the horse there. I pay you '30 a month, if you will let me send my female horses to the black horse."

"I want the black horse's blood in my horses. And you can keep every seventh horse for yourself.”

Jed put his arm around the black horse. The black horse was his. His dream had come true. It was too much all at once.

#p#副标题#e#

(参考译文)

黑骏马

杰德到了山顶,就坐下来休息。7月底太阳使他热汗淋淋。

他走了很长一段路才到山顶的,所以感到浑身乏力。他知道他想方设法要逮住的那匹马离此不会太远。他察看折山上及下面的山谷,寻找着那匹马留下的蹄印。
 
这时,他看到在山的另一侧,顺坡而下有一行马蹄印。他一定要逮住这匹马。他知道曾有比他更有能耐的人尝试过。州内最好的牧场主汤姆·拉格伦就曾经在他那帮牛仔的帮助下做过尝试.

但他们并没有能逮住它,其他试图去逮它的人也都失败了,都让它逃脱了。他们都说他太野,是不可能被逮住的。

顺着山路向下,慢慢地、艰难地走了一段之后,杰德到达一条水看上去十分清澈的河边,喝了几口河水。
 
接着又沿山谷向前走了一段,这是他看到了那匹黑马,他站在一棵树下遮太阳。杰德又走进了些,然后躲在一棵树后观察。这是他有生以来见过的最大、最黑的马。

杰德对马了如指掌。他是一个从小与马厮混、在马背上长大的人。尽管他挣的钱从来没有超过10美元,但他有自己的梦想:如果他能够得到一匹公马、一匹母马和10公顷土地,他就可以养马并以卖马为生了。那就是杰德想要得到的全部幸福了。
 
夜幕降临。那匹大黑马从树下走了出来,走到河边开始吃草。杰德继续观察着。几小时后,他在地上找了一块柔软的地方,将头靠在一棵倒着的老树上睡着了。

第二天日出时他醒了过来,马上就用目光寻找那匹马,还好,它就站在那里,正吃着草呢。杰德看着它吃草,随后又见它抬起头,朝四周看看。这就是野马的特征:它们总是十分小心,不时地看看四周是否有什么暗藏的危险。

 杰德开始慢慢向它走近。它停止吃草,看着杰德。杰德的心开始“咚咚”直跳。人们都说这马是一个杀手,但他还是继续向它靠近。

在离它15米远的地方,杰德停了下来。只见它高高的抬起前蹄,然后又重重的落回原地。杰德又走近了些。他开始柔声跟它说话。
 
接着,随着一声响亮的嘶鸣,这匹马转身顺着山谷跑了下去。杰德却因兴奋而浑身大汗淋漓,倒在地上。他已经做了别人没有做到的事儿.

他几乎快要挨到这匹野马了。它并不是一个杀手,如果它是的话,杰德现在已经没命了。
 
他一连跟踪了这匹马6天。只有马歇的时候,他才歇。杰德不喜欢他现在所呆的地方。这山谷的两侧都很高,到处是大岩石,周围没有多少树,而且谷底又软又湿。

杰德又看了一会儿马,随后躺下来睡觉。

半夜十分,他被雷雨声惊醒。他立刻沿着岩石向上走,直到找了一个可以蔽雨的干燥的山洞,他再接着睡。

第二天又冷又湿。大雨已经泡软了谷底的土壤。这一天他大部分时间都在跟着马走。湿湿的山谷是现在它唯一可以行走的地方了。
 
越走,山谷两侧就显得越高。临近黄昏时分,他才又见到了它,但这次它的脸上出现了一种恐惧的神情。他停下来仔细观察,只见马鼻子在嗅着空气,他闻到了危险的气息。

杰德想到是不是有什么野兽,一只豹猫,也可能是一只熊。他从裤子里抽出刀,在岩石间四处看看,但什么也没有看见。

他便向马走过去。豹猫可能在山谷的某一侧。他走得很慢,尽力同时看着两侧。
 
慢慢地,他来到了马身边。杰德一直盯着那些岩石。豹猫如果要袭击,它现在就会跳出来的。他感到既危险又兴奋。
 
突然,寂静被打破了。黑骏马大声嘶叫起来,那是一种充满恐惧的叫喊。随后,它顺着湿漉漉的山谷奔跑起来。

与此同时,岩石中传出了一种沉重的、深沉的响声。紧接着,事情就发生了。成吨成吨的湿土和大岩石开始从山坡两侧滚落下来。原来山地本身就是马的敌人。

#p#副标题#e#当空气恢复清新的时候,杰德立刻开始找马。在他面前是滚落下来的成吨的泥土,他无法看到山谷的前方,也看不到马。

他慢慢地爬过那些落下来的岩石。马在这个石土堆的另一边,看上去比先前更加恐惧。它的腿陷入了软土里,动弹不得。 而它越挣扎,就在泥中陷的越深。

杰德向它走过去。他每走一步都感到软泥也在将他向下吸,而且在长草的地方走比在泥里走还要艰难。

当他赶到马身边的时候,泥已经验到了马肚上,现在它只剩下头部还能动弹。摸到马,杰德感到欣喜若狂。“别挣扎,别担心,马儿!我会把你弄出来的!”

突然,他赶到马的牙齿咬住了他的手臂。他咬住嘴唇,以防自己疼得叫出声来。他用那只没被咬着的手轻抚马身,使它平静下来,慢慢地让它松开了嘴。随后,马将鼻子贴在了杰德的脸上。最后,他们成了朋友。

现在杰德可以开始忙活了。他仔细研究了这个问题。他没有办法将这么大的一匹马从泥里拽出来,它的绳子显然不够结实。

他开始用手将泥刨开,但这样以后,更多的泥又落进了他刚挖开的窟窿里。他就跑到那些山上落下的岩石边,脱下衬衣将岩石裹住,又挖了起来。

这一次,他将岩石放进他挖开的窟窿里,岩石稳稳地呆在里面,慢慢地形成了一面挡土石壁。他整整挖了一天。夜幕降临时,他的两手已经被尖锐的岩石划得血淋淋的。

他知道,夜晚对马来说是很难熬的。他不想让马害怕,以至于挣扎起来踢坏他在泥里建好的石壁。

他砍了一些小树,将它们放在马旁边的地上。另外,整整一夜,他都跟马说一些温柔友善的话来解除它的恐惧。

第二天早上,他抱来些草让它吃,然后又开始忙活起来。这是一项好时而又艰苦的工作。夜幕降临时,他又在马旁边躺了下来。现在他还不想让马从泥中挣脱出来,考验的时机还没有到。

到第三天中午的时候,他在马一边的泥里放进了足够的岩石。现在他开始挖马前腿附近的土了。他放的岩石使泥地坚硬了起来,马开始能动一点儿了。

而感到压力变小了的时候,马便将它的一条前腿拔了出来,翘到了岩石的上面,然后朝身边的岩石猛蹬,使它的身体从泥里稍微抬起了点儿。 

杰德拿出绳子,将它系到马的脖子上,开始拉绳。

马感到了拉力,就用尽全力在泥里向外挣扎。他将另一条前腿也拔出来,搭在了岩石上,靠着后腿的巨大蹬力和杰德对它脖子施加的拉力,他向前面的硬地移动着。

杰德倒在地上,高兴而又疲惫。他已经三天没吃东西了,睡的觉也不多。正有点迷迷糊糊的,他感到马的鼻子拱到了他的脸上,他赶快一跃而起。当他为马抱来草料时,马发出了友好的叫声,顽皮地拱拱他,和他戏耍。

一周之后,有人骑了一匹大黑马来到牧场主汤姆·拉格伦的领地上。他在牧场房边停下来,一名小个子男人从马背上跳了下来。汤姆·拉格伦用吃惊的眼光看着这匹马,眼前的情景简直令他难以置信。最后,他说:“你得到了他。”

“我的得到了他,汤姆,而且正像我说过的那样,我把他骑回来了。”

拉格伦看着马。他毕竟是一个马主,没有必要让杰德告诉他是怎么逮住马的。杰德疲惫的脸、划烂的手、肮脏的衣服和瘦弱的身体就已说明了一切。

“杰德,”拉格伦说,“那匹马会弄死除你之外的任何人,我不想要它。但我没忘记自己的诺言。

如果你让这匹马一直呆在这儿,我就把一些土地和牧场后边的那坐老房子送给你。如果你让我把我的母马送到你的黑骏马那里去交配的话,我会每个月付给你三十美元.

我想要我的马的身体力都有黑骏马的血统。而且,你可以留下交配后产下的小马中的七分之一。”

杰德伸出手臂,抱住大黑马。黑骏马成他的了。他的梦想已经变为现实了。突然之间,他得到的真是太多了。




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