黃昏之戀 01

Memories 回憶of my Melancholy 憂鬱的Whores 妓女

The year I turned ninety 到達九十歲, I wanted to give myself the gift of a night of wild love with an adolescent 青春期virgin 處女.

I thought of Rosa Cabarcas, the owner of an illicit不合法經營house who would inform her good clients when she had a new girl available.

I never succumbed to 屈服於that or to any of her many other lewd淫慾 temptations, but she did not believe in the purity 純淨of my principles

Morality道德, too, is a question of time, she would say with a malevolent 惡意的smile, you’ll see.

She was a little younger than I, and I hadn’t heard anything about her for so many years that she very well might have died 很有可能已經死了。.

But after the first ring鈴響I recognized the voice on the phone, and with no preambles 前奏I fired 激動地說at her:

“ Today’s the day.”

She sighed: Ah, my sad scholar, you disappear for twenty years and come back only to ask for the impossible.

She regained mastery of her art 恢復鎮定自持at once and offered me half a dozen delectable甜美的 options 選擇, but all of them, to be frank, were used.

I said no, insisting the girl had to be a virgin處女and available that very night.

She asked in alarm 驚嚇地: What are you trying to prove?

Nothing, I replied, wounded to the core自尊心深受冒犯, I know very well what I can and cannot do.

Unmoved 不受影響地, she said that scholars may know it all, but they don’t know everything: The only Virgos 純潔之人left in the world are people like you who were born in August. Why didn’t you give me more time?

Inspiration gives no warnings 靈感要來,沒有預警, I said.

But perhaps it can wait, she said, always more knowledgeable than any man, and she asked for just two days to make a thorough 澈底investigation 調查of the market.

I replied in all seriousness非常認真地 that in an affair such as this, at my age, each hour is like a year.

Then it can’t be done, she said without the slightest doubt 沒有絲好懷疑, but it doesn’t matter, it’s more exciting this way, what the hell無論如何, I’ll call you in an hour.

I don’t have to say so because people can see it from leagues away 從幾里拉遠的距離: I’m ugly, shy, and anachronistic 過時的. But by dint of 憑藉著not wanting to be those things, I have pretended to be just the opposite.醜陋、害羞、過時的相反

Until today, when I have resolved 決心to tell of my own free will出於自由意志 just what I’m like我是怎樣一個人, if 即使only to ease 平息 my conscience 良心.

I have begun with my unusual call不尋常的電話 to Rosa Cabarcas because, ( when it was ) seen from the vantage 優勢的point of today, that was the beginning of a new life找處女象徵新生活的開始 at an age when most mortals 人have already died.(在九十歲高齡,其他同年齡的人都已經死了。)

I lived in a colonial 殖民時期的house, on the sunny side of San Nicolas park, where I have spent all the days of my life without wife or fortune 財富, where my parents lived and died, and where I have proposed 建議to die alone, in the same bed in which I was born and on a day that I hope will be distant and painless.希望死的日子遙遠而沒有痛苦。

My father bought the house at public auction拍賣 at the end of the nineteenth century, rented the ground floor 底樓for luxury shops to a consortium 公司of Italians, and reserved 保留for himself the second floor, where he would live in happiness with one of their daughters, Florina de Dios Cargamantos, a notable 著名interpreter 解說員of Mozart, a multilingual 通曉多國語言Garibaldian, and the most beautiful and talented 有天份的woman who ever lived in the city: my mother.

The house is spacious 寬敞 and bright, with stucco 灰泥的arches 拱門and floors tiled 瓷磚in Florentine mosaics 馬賽克, and four glass door leading to a wraparound 延伸到兩端balcony 陽台where my mother would sit 過去常常on March nights to sing love arias 抒情曲 with other girls, her cousins.

From there you can see San Nicolas Park, the cathedral 大教堂, and the statue 雕像of Christopher Columbus, and beyond that the warehouses 倉庫on the river wharf 碼頭and the vast 廣大 horizon 地平線 of the Great Magdalenga River twenty leagues 海哩distant 遠from its estuary 支流.

The only unpleasant aspect 方面of the house is that the sun keeps changing windows in the course of the day, and all of them have to be closed when you try to take a siesta 午睡in the torrid 炎熱的half-light.微光

When I was left on my own獨立自主, at the age of thirty-two, I moved into what had been my parents’ bedroom, opened a doorway between that room and the library, and began to auction off 拍賣whatever I didn’t need to live, which turned out to be almost everything but the books and the Pianola rolls.麵包

For forty years I was the cable editor 電報編輯at El Diaria de La Paz, which meant reconstructing 重建and completing in indigenous 原住民prose 文字the news of the world that we caught as it flew through sidereal space 恆星空間on shortwaves短波 or in Morse code 摩斯電報電碼.

Today I scrape by 勉以渡日on my pension 退休金from that extinct 已經絕跡profession行業, get by 過日子even less on the one I receive for having taught Spanish and Latin grammar, earn almost nothing from the Sunday column 專欄I’ve written without flagging沒有中斷地 for more than half a century, and nothing at all from the music and theater pieces 文章published as favor 恩賜 to me on the many occasions場合 when notable 著名performers 表演者come to town.

I have never done anything except write, but I don’t possess 擁有the vocation 職業or talents of a narrator 敘述者, have no knowledge at all of the laws of dramatic composition 生花妙筆, and if I have embarked upon 從事this enterprise 行業it is because I trust in the light光輝 shed 顯露by how much I have read in my life.

In plain 通俗的language, I am the end of a line空無所有, without merit 優點or brilliance 傑出, who would have nothing to leave his descendants 後代 if not for the events 事件I am prepared to recount 描述, to the best of my ability, in these memories of my great love.

雄伯曰:馬奎士以九十歲高齡跟青春少女狂戀wild love,非但不以為是荒唐,反而認為是他一生僅有的偉大的愛great love,足以傳諸後代子孫leave his descendants 。欲知他如何自圓其說,請聽下回分解。

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