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发表于 2009-9-8 10:59 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
Once upon a time there was an emperor in China. The emperor's palace was the most beautiful building in the world. It was made of colored glass. It stood in the largest and most lovely garden in all the world. Silver bells were tied to the flowers. They made music when the wind blew, so that one would not pass the flowers without looking at them.
People came from everywhere just to see the emperor's garden. Some of the visitors went home and wrote books telling of how great and beautiful it was. They wrote of how the flowers smelled in the soft moonlight when one wandered along the garden  paths. They wrote about the silver bells that made music.

If one went on walking, one came to beautiful woods with tall trees and a deep lake. The woods extended to the sea. The lake was deep and blue, deep enough for large ships to sail under the branches of the trees.
Among these trees lived a nightingale. She sang so beautifully that even the poor fishermen who had plenty of other things to do lay still to listen to her.
Travelers came to the emperor's capital, and they admired everything very much, especially the palace and the garden, but when they heard the nightingale, they all said, "This is better than anything else!"
Poets wrote the most beautiful poems about the emperor's kingdom. Some of the poems reached the emperor. He sat in his golden throne reading and nodding his head. He was pleased by such beautiful images of the town, the palace and the garden. "But the nightingale is the best of all," he read. "What is this? said the emperor. "The nightingale? I know nothing about it. Is there such a bird in my kingdom? I have never heard about it."
Then he called his son, the prince. "There is said to be a very wonderful bird called the nightingale here," said the emperor. "They say that she is better than anything else in all my great kingdom. Invite her to come to my palace tonight."
The prince had a lot of trouble finding someone who knew the nightingale. But at last he found a little kitchen girl. She cleaned the palace pots and pans. She said, "Oh, the nightingale? I know her very well. Every evening I am allowed to take meat to my poor sick mother. She lives by the shore. On my way back, when I am tired, I rest for a while in the woods, and then I hear the nightingale. Her song brings tears into my eyes. It feels like my mother's kiss."
"Please ask the nightingale to come to see the emperor," the prince said to the kitchen girl. "He has never heard her lovely song."
The girl said that she would invite the little bird to come to the palace.
That very night the little nightingale sang her song for the old emperor. It was so lovely that the wind stopped blowing the silver bells in the garden in order to listen.
Tears of joy came to the eyes of the emperor as he listened. After the bird's song the old emperor said softly, "What present can I give you for singing to me?" "I want no present," said the bird. "It is enough to know that you love my music. I will come to the palace each night and sing for you."
After that, for many months, the little nightingale came to sing for the aged ruler of China. It seemed that he would never grow tired of hearing her song.
Then, one day, the emperor's brother, who ruled in another kingdom, sent him a present. It was a mechanical bird. All one had to do in order to make it sing was wind it up with a key. The old emperor fell in love with his new mechanical pet. What fun it was to wind it up! How pretty its golden wings were!
Soon the nightingale from the woods was forgotten. She was almost broken-hearted because the emperor forgot her. She just stayed in her favorite tree. And she sang to herself and to the little kitchen girl who always came to hear the nightingale.
Once the nightingale asked how well the mechanical bird could sing, and the little girl said, "The mechanical bird sounds very nice, and it is like the real one, but there is something wanting. I don't know what."
The mechanical bird was placed on a silken cushion close to the emperor's bed. A music master in the court wrote a lot of books about the mechanical bird. Each book was very long and written in the most difficult characters.
For many a day the emperor enjoyed the singing of his mechanical songbird. Then quite suddenly, something went wrong! One evening, when the bird was singing its song and the emperor was lying in bed listening to it, there was a popping sound inside the toy bird. Then a spring burst and it stopped singing in the middle of its song. The emperor jumped out of bed and sent for his private doctors, but what good could they do? Then the old emperor called in the finest and best craftsmen in China. But not one of them could make the mechanical bird sing again.
At last the gold and silver bird was put back in its cage. And there it stood in the emperor's bedroom. It was pretty to look at, but of no use to anyone.
One day, the old emperor became ill. He lay pale and cold in his gorgeous bed. The courtiers thought he was dead, and they all went to pay their respects to their new emperor. But the emperor was not dead yet. There was great weeping in his palace as he grew weaker until he could hardly move. There was an open window high above him, and the moonlight streamed in on the emperor. The mechanical bird was beside him.
All the Chinese people loved their ruler. One day the wise doctors said that the old emperor probably would never see the sun rise again. The people heard the news with heavy hearts.
That night, when the old emperor lay in his bed, he slowly opened his eyes. He looked at the mechanical bird. "Music! Music!" he cried. "Please sing once more for me. I have given you gold and rich presents, golden bird, so please sing just once again."
But the silly toy bird sat in its golden cage and did nothing. The little kitchen girl was weeping in the garden under the emperor's bedroom window. When she heard the old emperor, she ran to a far corner in the garden.
The kitchen girl found the little nightingale sitting in her tree. "Come, come, dear bird!" the girl said. "Let our emperor hear you sing once more. And hurry! He is very ill and he may never see the sun rise again."
Quickly the dear little nightingale flew down to the Emperor's bedroom window. There she began to sing her song of life and hope. Color came back to the old emperor's tired, white face. "Go on, dear nightingale, go on," he said softly when she stopped for a moment. And the little bird sang on. Again the song was so lovely that the very wind stopped blowing in order to listen to it.
When the nightingale finished her song, the old emperor said, "You must always stay with me. You may sing when you like. And I will break the mechanical bird into a thousand pieces."
"Oh, no," said the nightingale. "The golden toy bird already did its best. Keep it in the cage. But I will come each night and sing by your window. I will sing to you the song of love and joy and the good things in life."


With these words the nightingale sang the last song, then she flew away into the night. After that, the emperor fell into a sound and restful sleep.
The next morning the servants came to see whether the old emperor had lived to see the sun rise. They opened the door quietly. There they found the emperor standing by the window! The emperor turned from the window as the sun rose. There was new color in his face and his eyes were sparkling. With a beautiful smile the emperor said, "Good morning!"
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 楼主| 发表于 2009-9-8 11:00 | 显示全部楼层
很久以前在中国有一位皇帝。这位皇帝的皇宫是世界上最漂亮的建筑物。它是用琉璃建成的,矗立在世界上最大和最美丽的花园里。花朵上系满了银制的风铃。风一吹,银铃会发出音乐般的声音,如此每个人经过这些花时一定会看看它们。
人们从各地涌来就是要看皇帝的花园。有些参观者回到家后会着书叙述那花园是多幺奇妙而美丽。他们描写到在柔和的月光下沿着花园小径漫步时,这些花闻起来是如何的香,也描述到那些会发出乐声的银制风铃。
一个人若继续往前走,便会来到一片美丽的树林,里面有高耸的树木和深邃的湖泊。这片树林一直延伸到海边。湖又深又蓝,深得足以让大船在树木的支干下航行。
在这些树林之中住着一只夜莺。她的歌声悦耳动听,即使是那些有很多事要做的清苦捕鱼郎都会静静地躺下来聆听她的歌声。
旅客进京对每件事物都赞叹不已,特别是皇宫和御花园。但当他们听了夜莺的歌声时都说:『这歌声胜过一切!』
诗人写出最美丽的诗篇,叙述皇帝的王国。这些诗有一些传到皇帝的手中。他坐在金色的龙椅上边看书边点头。那些有关京城、皇宫和御花园的精彩描述使他龙心大悦。『但夜莺是其中最好的,』他看到这一段文字。皇帝说:『这是什幺?夜莺?我对它一无所知。在我的王国中有这幺一只鸟吗?我怎幺从来都没有听说过。』
于是他召唤他的儿子也就是太子前来。皇帝说:『据说这里有一只非常奇妙的鸟叫做夜莺。大家都说她比我伟大的王国中任何一件东西都还要好。你去邀请她今晚到我的皇宫来。』
太子找寻认得夜莺的人时找得好苦。但最后他找到了一个在厨房工作的小女孩。她负责清洗皇宫的锅盆。她说:『哦!夜莺是吗?我对她知之甚详。每晚我都获准拿肉去给我那疾病缠身的可怜母亲吃。她就住海边。在回来的路上,当我觉得疲惫时,便在树林里休息一会儿。就在这时,我便会听到夜莺在歌唱。她的歌声使我感动得落泪。这感觉就好象是我母亲的吻。』
太子便对那小女孩说:『请你邀请夜莺来参见皇帝,他从来没有听过她
那美妙的歌声。』
女孩说她会邀请这只小鸟进宫。
就在那天晚上小夜莺为老皇帝献唱。那歌声有如天籁般美妙,就连风也停止吹动花园中的银铃,只为了倾听这歌声。
皇帝一边听,一边流下欢喜的眼泪。这只鸟唱完后,年迈的皇帝柔声说道:『我能给你什幺样的礼物来酬谢你为我歌唱吗?』,这只鸟说:『我不要礼物,知道陛下喜爱我的音乐就已经足够了。我会每晚到皇宫来唱歌给陛下听。』
之后,有好几个月的时间,小夜莺都前来为这位统治中国的老皇帝献唱。他似乎对她的歌声百听不厌。
皇帝有个弟弟,他统治另一个王国。有一天,他送给皇帝一件礼物,那是一只机械鸟。要使它唱歌只要用一只钥匙转动它就可以了。这位老皇帝一下子就爱上了他的新机械宠物。转动它真是有趣极了!它那金色的翅膀说有多美就有多美!
那只来自树林中的夜莺很快就被遗忘了。由于皇帝忘了她,她几乎伤心欲绝。她只好栖息在她最喜爱的树上,对着她自己以及总是来听她歌唱的厨房小女孩唱歌。
有一次夜莺问到那只机械鸟唱得有多好,小女孩说:『这只机械鸟的声音很美妙,而且它就像真的鸟一样,但是好象还欠缺了什幺。我不知道是什幺东西。』
这只机械鸟被放置在靠近皇帝床边的丝制垫子上。皇宫里的一位音乐大师写了很多有关这只机械鸟的著作。每本书都很长,并且都是用最艰涩的文字写成的。
有好一段日子皇帝很喜爱他那只会唱歌的机械鸟。接着很突然地,发生了一件不妙的事!有一天晚上,这只鸟正在唱歌而皇帝也正躺在床上聆听时,玩具鸟体内传出一阵爆裂的声音。接着一条弹簧断裂,这只机械鸟歌唱到一半就停了。皇帝从床上跳下来,派人去请御医来,但他们又能派上什幺用场?于是老皇帝请全中国最优秀、最好的工匠来,但没有人能使这只机械鸟再恢复歌唱。
最后这只金银打造的鸟被放回皇帝寝宫内的笼子里。虽然它看起来很美丽,但对任何人来说却毫无用处。
有一天,老皇帝生病了。他脸色苍白、冰冷地躺在他那华丽的床上。朝廷大臣们都以为他已经死了,而去朝拜他们的新皇帝。但是皇帝还没死。当他愈来愈虚弱直到几乎不能动弹的时候,宫内充满了悲泣的声音。在他屋顶高处有一扇开着的天窗,月光照射到皇帝的身上。那只机械鸟就在他的身边。


全中国的百姓都很爱戴他们的统治者。有一天那些高明的御医说老皇帝大概看不到第二天的日出了。百姓们听到这个消息,心情都很沉重。
那天晚上,老皇帝躺在他的床上时,慢慢睁开眼睛。他看到了那只机械鸟。他叫道:『音乐!音乐!请再为我唱一次歌吧。黄金鸟,我已经给了你黄金和丰厚的礼物,因此请你再唱一次吧。』
但这只笨玩具鸟只是坐在它的金色笼子里一动也不动。厨房小女孩在皇帝寝宫窗户下的花园中哭泣。当她听到老皇帝的话时,便跑到花园中一个偏远的角落那里。
厨房小女孩发现小夜莺正栖息在树上。女孩说:『快来,快来,亲爱的小鸟!让我们的皇帝再次听到你歌唱。快点!他已经病得很重,可能再也看不到日出了。』
这只可爱的小夜莺快速飞到皇帝寝宫的窗边。她开始唱着生命和希望之歌。老皇帝疲惫、苍白的脸上开始有了一点血色。当她暂停一会儿的时候,老皇帝轻柔地说:『继续唱下去,亲爱的夜莺,继续唱下去。』小鸟继续唱下去。歌声美妙动听,因此风又再次静止下来以便能聆听这美妙的歌声。
夜莺唱完歌时,老皇帝说:『你一定要永远陪伴在我身边。你想唱歌的时候就唱歌。我要把这只机械鸟砸个粉碎。』
夜莺说:『哦,不要这样做,这只金色的玩具鸟已经尽了全力了。还是把它留在笼子里吧。但我会每晚来陛下的窗前唱歌给陛下听。我将把有关爱、喜悦和生命中美好的事物唱出来给陛下听。』

说完这些话后,夜莺便唱了最后一首歌,然后飞向夜空。皇帝随即进入沉沉的、安详的睡梦中。
隔天早上仆人过来看看老皇帝是否还活着看到日出。他们悄悄地把门打开,发现皇帝站在窗边!太阳升起时,皇帝从窗边转过身来。他容光焕发,两眼炯炯有神。皇帝挂着可掬的笑容说:『早安!』
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发表于 2010-2-9 08:23 | 显示全部楼层
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