2019年10月28日 英语美文 暂无评论



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“It was shocking,” Kendall said. “How can people be so cool?”
“Everyone except for a few people donated in small amounts,” Lockwood said. “Things like $4.20 or $6.66, people with user names like theslavekitten.”
Kendall had five surgeries. His recovery was slow, and eventually he had to face the reality that until he healed completely, he couldn’t do a job that required him to stare at a computer all day. Suddenly he and Lockwood were without a livelihood.

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With few other options, they put their possessions in storage and moved into a 10-by-14 upstairs bedroom in her father’s modest brick rectory in Kansas City: a married couple in their 30s living across the hall from the priest and his wife.
With Kendall recuperating and with no income, Lockwood had to choose between finding a job or writing a book she could sell. She began a memoir, an attempt at flat-out funny prose, no 140-character limits, no line breaks. Between the interruptions of her father, dressed in his cassock and jamming on one of his left-handed guitars or shouting at the Cincinnati Bengals on TV, she traced her life thus far.
She was still living in the rectory when “Rape Joke” was published in The Awl. There is a section of the poem about the speaker’s parents’ response to the rape:
It was a year before you told your parents, because he was like a son to them. The rape joke is that when you told your father, he made the sign of the cross over you and said, “I absolve you of your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. . . .”
Lockwood came downstairs one night after the poem was published to find her mother sitting in the dark in front of her computer, reading the poem and crying. Her mother hugged her and said, “It’s O.K., you’re still standing.” But she had also read some of the ugly comments left on The Awl’s website — “oh, get over yourself, you attention whore . . . no one feels bad for you. you’re the rape joke.”
“Do you see what these people were saying about you?” her mother asked.
“Mom, it’s O.K.,” Lockwood said. “It’s just the Internet.”
Of her parents’ reaction to the rape, she later said: “People don’t necessarily respond as their best selves in the moment. The initial conversations were not totally ideal. But when you make art out of something, they get another chance.”
Today, Lockwood and Kendall live on the ground floor of a Cape Cod-style house on the east side of Lawrence, Kan., a 30-minute drive from her parents. When I visited in April, they had been there for just three months, and Lockwood didn’t know her own address. She handed the phone to Kendall to give me directions. Kendall now works as an editor for the newspaper in Lawrence and was able to cover the $600 a month rent for the house, which was sparsely furnished and adorned with action figures, Popeye and Olive Oyl throw pillows and a surprisingly heavy statuette of Chaim Topol as Tevye in “Fiddler on the Roof.”
现在,洛克伍德和肯德尔租住在堪萨斯州劳伦斯市东部的一座科德角风格的房子一层,距离她父母的住处只有30分钟车程。当我今年4月拜访他们时,他们在那里刚住了三个月,洛克伍德甚至记不住自己的地址。她把电话交给肯德尔,让他告诉我地址。肯德尔如今在劳伦斯一家报纸担任编辑,这样他们才付得起600美元一个月的房租。房子里面陈设简单,装饰品包括一些动作片卡通人像,“大力水手和奥莉薇”(Popeye and Olive Oyl)图案的靠枕,还有一座以色列演员托普(Chaim Topol)扮演的《屋顶上的小提琴手》(Fiddler on the Roof)中主角特维(Tevye)的雕像,重得出奇。
Behind the house, trees line a creek named for William S. Burroughs, the literary patron of Lawrence. Lockwood likes to sit in a room at the back of the house in the afternoons, looking out the window and going into her own head. Some evenings, a skunk emerges from the Burroughs Creek bank and locks eyes with her before disappearing under the house. She feels as if they have forged a bond and calls the animal Big Boi, after one of her favorite rappers.
房后有一条绿树成荫的小溪,叫做“巴罗斯溪”,以劳伦斯市的文学赞助者威廉· 巴罗斯(William S. Burroughs)命名。洛克伍德喜欢每天下午呆在房子后面的一个房间,向外凝望巴罗斯溪,陷入沉思。有时,一只臭鼬在傍晚时分从溪边爬出来,跟她对望,然后消失在房子下面。她感觉自己与这只臭鼬已经建立了友谊,并且用自己最喜欢的饶舌歌手的名字给它起名“大波依”。
We took a walk along the Burroughs trail and up into the heart of Lawrence’s old downtown and talked about her poetry. “Whenever anyone asks me about process,” she said, “I’m like a cat stroked the wrong way: Get away from my belly!” But she is fundamentally a sharer, a poet for the age of sharing. “I’m verbally incontinent — anything just pours out of me,” she said. “My father’s that way. He doesn’t worry about it. My mother does. I got both. I say just the worst things the English language is capable of, and then later on I lie awake at night thinking, Oh, Tricia, you’ve done it again.”
Lockwood’s poems are most radical in their ability to convey the essential strangeness of sex and gender. “I consistently felt myself to be not male or female,” she said, “but the 11-year-old gender: protagonist. Maybe it’s a byproduct of reading a lot of books, of projecting yourself into different bodies. As an early teen, I thought I presented as androgynous, which was not true. But I had a short haircut, and I felt androgynous.”
There was no discussion of sex in the home growing up. She ascribes the birth of her own sexual knowledge to a road trip with her aunt when they listened to Jean Auel’s “The Valley of Horses.” “We’re driving along the Grand Canyon, the hugest vagina in the world, and my aunt is playing the audiobook of cave-man sex. I just pretended to be asleep or she’d turn it off.”
她长大的过程中,家里面没人谈性。她把自己的性知识起源归于某次与姑妈的长途开车旅行,车里面播放着珍·奥尔(Jean M. Auel)的小说《马之谷》(The Valley of Horses)。“我们在大峡谷边开车旅行,这是世界上最大的阴道,而我姑妈在这里面播放着穴居人性爱的有声小说。我假装睡着了,不然她会关掉录音机。”
We stopped for a moment at a picnic bench in an idyllic city park. “I blush if I see people kissing in a movie,” she said. “There are certain cusses I can’t say. It’s a private joke: I’m a puritan. I was a child bride. There’s this prim, prudish part of me, and in order to get past that, I just have to push all the way.” As she spoke, an elderly couple walked along a nearby path, a young woman danced with a hula hoop near a fountain and a squirrel darted away from us toward a tree just beginning to leaf. “Nothing I say is actually physically possible on any plane of existence,” Lockwood added, watching the squirrel. “I may want to French a squirrel, but I can’t. It would be hard to catch. Rabies. Too much fur.”
Many of the titles of the poems in the new collection, “Motherland Fatherland Homelandsexuals,” rival click bait in their demand to be read: “Is Your Country a He or a She in Your Mouth,” “He Marries the Stuffed-Owl Exhibit,” “Search ‘Lizard Vagina’ and You Shall Find,” “Nessie Wants to Watch Herself Doing It.” One poem traces the evolution of generic doe-eyed deer named Bambi into generic women named Fawn, with their “light shafts of long blond hair and long legs.” Yet the book, for all its playfulness, poses sharp challenges to many stereotypes, particularly those around gender. “List of Cross-Dressing Soldiers” starts with famous women who dressed as men and fought in battles, but then shifts closer to home. Lockwood’s younger brother, Paul, is a Marine who has served two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan. “We would always have dreams and then hear that something bad had happened near him,” she said. The poem touches on these close calls:
新诗集《母国父国祖国恋》(Motherland Fatherland Homelandsexuals)中许多诗作的标题颇为惹眼,不亚于网上种种哗众取宠的新闻标题:《你的国家是你嘴里的男还是女》(Is Your Country a He or a She in Your Mouth),《他娶了猫头鹰标本展览》(He Marries the Stuffed-Owl Exhibit),《搜寻’蜥蜴阴道’你将找到》(Search ‘Lizard Vagina’ and You Shall Find),《内茜想看着自己做那事》(Nessie Wants to Watch Herself Doing It.)。有一首诗讲述眼神温顺的小鹿斑比是如何演变成那种叫做佛恩的温顺女子,提到了她们“那如同光柱一般的金色头发和长腿”。但是,尽管这本诗集内不乏插科打诨的内容,它仍旧对许多大众心目中的刻板印象提出尖锐挑战,尤其是那些与性别有关的内容。“异装癖士兵名单”这首诗开头就提到那些青史留名的女扮男装驰骋沙场的女子,随后开始接近现实。洛克伍德的弟弟保罗(Paul)是一名海军陆战队队员,曾经在伊拉克战场服役两轮,在阿富汗服役一轮。“我们常常会梦到他,然后就会听说他身边发生的噩耗,”她说。这首诗提到了保罗多次险些遭遇不测的情形:
My brother is alive because of a family capacity for little hairs rising on the back of the neck.
我的弟弟得以生还 是因为家族遗传特征 危险来临时,脖子上的毛发会竖起来。
“He’d always say, ‘I’m not going to go back’ and then do another tour,” Lockwood said. “The last tour in Afghanistan was tough. He just missed being exploded by an I.E.D. He lost buddies.” Yet what drew her into the poem was the interaction between her brother and his fellow Marines.
“他总是说,‘我不要再回去’,然后再自告奋勇上战场一次,”洛克伍德说。“他最近一次在阿富汗服役很艰险,险些被一个土制炸弹炸死。他有些战友阵亡了。” 但是,她弟弟与自己的海军陆战队战友之间的交流吸引她写下了这首诗。
. . . “Kisses,” he writes to a friend.His friend he writes back, “Cuddles.” Bunch of girls,bunch of girls. They write each other, “Miss you,brother.” Bunch of girls, bunch of girls. They passedthe hours with ticklefights. They grew their mustachestogether. They lost their hearts to local dogs,what a bunch of girls.
……“吻你,”他写给一个朋友。他的朋友回信说:“拥抱你”。真是群娘们,一群娘们。他们写信说:“想念你,兄弟。”真是群娘们,一群娘们。他们靠互相挠痒来打发时间 他们一起留胡子。他们对当地的狗狗爱不释手,真是群娘们。
“It’s such a macho culture,” she said, “but also the most affectionate male culture I’ve ever encountered. Sitting on each other’s laps, stroking each other’s faces. It’s very sweet. But at the same time it’s, ‘Be a man!’ ”
She didn’t think her brother would read the book. “He’s just proud that you’ve done it,” she said. “Same with my dad.” Her father has never heard her read her poems. “I stay away and let her do what she needs to do with her life,” Father Lockwood told me one evening during a visit to the rectory in Kansas City. “She’s crazy smart and very talented. Good theology teaches you that everyone belongs to themselves.” Then he turned to his daughter and said, “You come from us, but you’re not us.”
To Lockwood, that distinction was more mystery than theology. “I have this hall-monitor mother,” she told me later, “and this psycho freakout prog-rock dad just doing whatever he wants; he doesn’t even obey any laws except the laws of the church, and I came out. I’m not even sure how it happened.”
One afternoon during my visit to Lawrence, Lockwood and Kendall were in the side yard of their house, he drinking wine on the grass, she finishing a shot of vodka while sitting on a swing suspended from a large tree. At some point, a hare emerged from the Burroughs Creek bank and watched them — Thumper checking in on old friends. The conversation turned to whether she ever felt the lack of a college education.
“A nice byproduct of never going to college,” she said, “is that I’m never embarrassed about not knowing something. I’m missing such large areas. If you looked at my brain, it would be like those taxi drivers who have one huge lobe that just contains directions, except for me it would be metaphors. I felt like I had a freak ability.”
“Like you’re a good singer,” Kendall said.
Writing in Salon recently, Laura Miller drew attention to “a handful of great literary husbands” whose support enabled the likes of Virginia Woolf and George Eliot to produce great works: “It took an extraordinary man to acknowledge the superior gifts of his wife and to devote himself to bringing them to fruition.”
劳拉·米勒最近在《沙龙》(Salon)网上杂志上撰文提到了“那一小批伟大的文学家丈夫”,他们的鼎力支持使得诸如弗吉尼亚·伍尔夫(Virginia Woolf)和乔治·艾洛特等女作家得以写出伟大作品。“只有非同凡响的男人才能认可妻子的出众天赋,并且帮助她们展现才华。”
Kendall saw something from the start in those message boards. “I’m going to work and she’s going to write all day — when you are marrying a genius, that’s the deal,” he said, watching her on the swing. “It’s like marrying Aretha Franklin. She’s going to get to sing. If you hear Aretha Franklin sing — ”
肯德尔从妻子刚开始参与网上文学论坛时就看出了她的才华。“我去上班,她则在家里整天写作——你如果娶了个天才,生活就是这样,”他一边望着坐在秋千上的妻子一边说。“这就好像娶了阿丽莎·富兰克林(Aretha Franklin,美国著名非裔歌手音乐家)。她必须要唱歌,而你如果听过阿丽莎·富兰克林唱歌……”
“This is so grandiose,” Lockwood interrupted.
“你把我说的也太高大上吧,” 洛克伍德插话说。
“ — you understand what’s going on musically. Whoever was the first person to hear Aretha sing, understood. I just happened to be the first.”
Last month, Lockwood and Kendall traveled to New York City. It was the first time for Lockwood. She was scheduled to give two readings and meet her poetry editor, as well as the editor of her memoir. Like true Midwesterners, they rented a car and drove all over Manhattan and Brooklyn.
On Saturday she was to be part of a distinguished poetry event with a number of well-known older poets at Sarah Lawrence College. The rest of her trip, including her birthday, would prove to be a comedy of errors — pants ripped on a bench, maxed-out credit-card (the memoir money hadn’t come in yet), passing out in a hot tub. “My disaster birthday,” as she would describe it to me. But Friday night, the young and clever of Brooklyn packed the Morgan Town Bar in Bushwick, where Lockwood was headlining a long bill of “Internet comedy writers.”
She gamely waited through seven other acts, laughing at the funny bits, smiling through the rest. Many people came up to talk to her — five minutes into a conversation they might reveal their Twitter handles, at which point her eyes sparked with recognition and she hugged them. One young man approached Kendall to introduce himself and ask about his eyes — he had contributed to the surgery fund.
At last, Lockwood’s turn came and, in a gray top and skirt that she had selected at the Goodwill in Lawrence, she did an impromptu barrel roll onto the stage for her private, nerve-calming joke. The piece she was about to read was a true story of a mother-daughter road trip interrupted by the discovery of less-than-spotless bed linens at a Nashville hotel chain. It’s about the moment when you and your mother first say to each other a slang word for a bodily fluid, at which point, she said, “there’s no going back.” The title of the piece can only be rendered in these pages as “The Semen Queens of Hyatt Place.”
最后轮到洛克伍德上场了。她穿着在劳伦斯好意慈善店买的一件灰色的上衣和裙子,像个木桶似的滚上了台。这个即兴之举是她为了使自己不紧张而跟自己开的玩笑。她要读的诗讲的是一个真实的故事:一对母女的汽车公路之旅被纳什维尔一家连锁旅馆里一条不那么干净的床单打断了。洛克伍德解释说这首诗是关于母女第一次对对方用俗语说某种体液。而话一出口,“就再也收不回去了”。这首诗的标题稍加改动是《凯悦旅馆的精液皇后们》(The Semen Queens of Hyatt Place)——原标题包含有不适合本刊登出的字眼。
Back in Kansas, she had already read it to her mother, who laughed out loud. In Brooklyn, they did the same.
在肯萨斯,洛克伍德已经给母亲读过了这首诗,母亲放声大笑。在布鲁克林,听众们的反应也是这样的。 verywen.com