相助 The Help

小说讲述两个黑人女佣和一个涉世未深的白人小姐,如何在一个种族隔离政策盛行的小镇上搜集素材写成一本黑人奴仆讲述自己故事的书并得到出版,答案就在封面上——相助。
选文是对女佣艾碧莲失去爱子后,到李弗特夫妇家帮佣的描写。

作者简介
凯瑟琳·斯多克特(Kathryn Stockett)生长于密西西比州的首府杰?#25628;罰↗ackson),毕业于亚拉巴马大学,并获得英语与创作性写作硕士学位,毕业后从事杂志编辑工作九年。她一直牢记孩童时代与家中黑人女仆Demetrie相处的点滴,并以此创作了她的第一部小说《相助》(The Help)。

The Help

美式发音 适合泛听

Excerpt from Chapter One◆节选自第一章

But one night he working late at the Scanlon-Taylor mill, lugging two-by-fours to the truck, 1)splinters slicing all the way through the glove. He too small for that kind a work, too skinny, but he needed the job. He was tired. It was raining. He slip off the loading dock, fell down on the drive. Tractor trailer didn’t see him and crushed his lungs fore he could move. By the time I found out, he was dead.
一天晚上,他在斯坎伦-泰勒轧机厂干到很晚,拖着的木料往货车上装,木刺划破手套,扎得满手都是。他太瘦,个头又小,干不了那重活儿,可他需要那份工作。他累得支撑不住,天又?#25504;輳?#20182;滑倒了,从装卸月台上摔下来,一头栽进车道。拖车司机没瞧见他,他还没来得及挪身,车就从他身上碾过去了。等我找到他的时候,他已经断气了。

That was the day my whole world went black. Air look black, sun look black. I laid up in bed and stared at the black walls a my house. Minny came ever day to make sure I was still breathing, feed me food to keep me living. Took three months fore I even look out the window, see the world still there. I was surprise to see the world didn’t stop just cause my boy did.
从那天起,我整个世界都黑了。空气是黑的,太阳是黑的。我躺在床上直愣愣地盯着屋里黑的墙壁。明尼每天都来看我,以确保?#19968;?#26377;气息,她喂我进食,让我?#20889;?#22320;活下去。整整三个月后,我才抬眼?#21019;?#25143;外头,看外头的世界是否照旧。?#19968;?#24785;地发现整个世界竟然没有因为我儿子的死停下半分。

  Five months after the funeral, I lifted myself up out a bed. I put on my white uniform and put my little gold cross back around my neck and I went to 2)wait on Miss Leefolt cause she just have her baby girl. But it weren’t too long before I seen something in me had changed. A bitter seed was planted inside a me. And I just didn’t feel so accepting anymore.
葬礼之后又过了五个月,我起身下床。我穿上白色?#21697;职?#23567;小的金十字架戴回脖子上,随后前去服侍李弗特小姐,她刚生下个女娃。但没过多久我便发现我的心已不?#21019;忧啊?#33510;涩的种子在我体内悄然埋下,我不再那么容易敞开胸怀了。

“GET THE HOUSE straightened up and then go on and fix some of that chicken salad now,” say Miss Leefolt.
“把屋子规整规整,再去把鸡肉沙拉准备好。”李弗特太太呼喝着。

It’s bridge club day. Every fourth Wednesday a the month. A course I already got everthing ready to go—made the chicken salad this morning, ironed the tablecloths yesterday. Miss Leefolt seen me at it too. She ain’t but twenty-three years old and she like hearing herself tell me what to do.
每个月的第四个礼拜三是她们的桥牌聚会日。我已经将里里外外拾掇停当——一大早做好了鸡肉沙拉,桌?#23478;?#22312;昨天熨烫平整。李弗特太太亲眼瞧着我做完这些。她不过才二十三岁,?#26149;芟不?#23545;我指手画脚,差使我做这干那。

She already got the blue dress on I ironed this morning, the one with sixty-five pleats on the waist, so tiny I got to 3)squint through my glasses to iron. I don’t hate much in life, but me and that dress is not on good terms.
她已经把我今早熨好的蓝裙子穿上了,那条在腰上密匝匝打了六十五个小褶的裙子,?#19994;么?#36215;眼?#24471;?#19978;眼才能把那些绿豆大的褶给?#22871;?#20102;。我对家常日子没啥抱怨的,可我和那条裙子实在处不到一块儿去。

“And you make sure Mae Mobley’s not coming in on us, now. I tell you, I am so burned up at her—tore up my good stationery into five thousand pieces and I’ve got fifteen thank-you notes for the Junior League to do…”
“还有,你要管住梅·莫布利,别让她来烦我们。我告诉你吧,她可是把我惹火了,她把我好?#30805;说?#20449;纸撕个粉碎,我可还有十五封青年联盟会的?#34892;?#20449;要写呐……”

I arrange the-this and the-that for her lady friends. Set out the good crystal, put the silver service out. Miss Leefolt don’t put up no 4)dinky card table like the other ladies do. We sat at the dining room table. Put a cloth on top to cover the big L-shaped crack, move that red flower 5)centerpiece to the sideboard to hide where the wood all scratched. Miss Leefolt, she like it fancy when she do a luncheon. Maybe she trying to make up for her house being small. They ain’t rich folk, that I know. Rich folk don’t try so hard.
?#19968;?#22312;忙着为她的那些太太小姐们准?#21018;?#20010;支应那个。我搬出花哨的玻璃杯盏,摆上银?#23454;?#21449;。李弗特太太没能像其他阔太太那样添置上一张小巧精致的牌桌,我们只得坐在餐桌前打牌。我们在桌上铺上桌布遮住L型的裂隙,?#32844;?#32418;色?#20301;?#26700;饰挪到橱柜那儿,好挡住坑坑洼洼剥落掉渣的木柜。李弗特太太大概想弥补屋子狭小的不足,着意把餐会拾掇得?#36824;?#20307;面。我知道他们不太富裕,富庶人家可不会这么费劲。

I’m used to working for young couples, but I spec this is the smallest house I ever worked in. It’s just the one story. Her and Mister Leefolt’s room in the back be a fair size, but Baby Girl’s room be tiny. The dining room and the regular living room kind a join up. Only two bathrooms, which is a relief cause I worked in houses where they was five or six. Take a whole day just to clean toilets. Miss Leefolt don’t pay but ninety-five cents an hour, less than I been paid in years. But after Treelore died, I took what I could. Landlord wasn’t gonna wait much longer. And even though it’s small, Miss Leefolt done the house up nice as she can. She pretty good with the sewing machine. Anything she can’t buy new of, she just get her some blue material and sew it a cover.

我过去常帮年轻夫妇操持家务,可我揣度着这家是我见过门户最小的人家。整套房子上下不过一层,她和李弗特先生的后屋尚且宽敞,可是梅的房间小得立不住脚。餐厅连着起居?#19968;?#20316;一处。他们只有两个卫生间,这倒为我省下不少事,我?#24551;?#30896;上的人家通常都有五六间,光为他们清理厕所就得花上我整整一天。李弗特太太每个钟点只付我九十五美分,?#20197;?#19981;止这个价了,但打崔劳死后,我也顾不上挑肥拣瘦,我已经拖欠?#40644;?#25151;租了。尽管屋子小得转不开身,可李弗特太太?#25925;?#36153;?#26408;?#21147;把它装点得光?#20365;?#38754;。她很擅长缝连补缀,一旦买?#40644;?#26032;家什,她便扯些蓝布头,自裁自缝出个布套?#24433;?#26087;家什装扮上。
译文参考自中国城市出版社版本