Erenlai - Egoyan Zheng (伊格言)
Egoyan Zheng (伊格言)

Egoyan Zheng (伊格言)

本名鄭千慈,1977年生。台大心理系、臺北醫學院醫學系肄業,淡江中文碩士。曾獲聯合文學小說新人獎等,並入選《台灣說故事》(2009法蘭克福書展台灣館選集)、《台灣成長小說選》(二魚)、《三城記:台北卷》(上海文藝)等選集。

週一, 31 一月 2011 18:55

The Story of the Blue Child

Author: Egoyan Zheng (伊格言) Translated from the Chinese by Conor Stuart

 

The Western limits of the Pacific Ocean. The island nation of Taiwan.

The North coast. The beach at sunset. Although one might call it sunset, given the low latitude, even in the midst of late Autumn, night never fell early. Although the sunlight had actually already long vanished beyond the horizon; there remained the sapphire curtain of night permeated with a milky glean hanging down from the edge of the heavens.

K walked alone away from the bright lights of the fish market beside the quay and wandered along the deserted beach, enjoying the stirring chill of the sea breeze after nightfall. In the distance, above the dark coastal highway, several blimps passed by from time to time at irregular intervals, more intermittent than frequent; one had to wait quite a while to catch sight of the circular beam of the searchlights passing by.

When there were no blimps passing, the vast space in the distance on the margins of his vision was a pitch black. Nearby the neon lights of a seaside amusement park glistened, the carousel with its colorful vaulted arches shone with an orange light in the midst of the pitch black surroundings. It was on appearance a popular scenic spot, in the day time it would most likely be teeming with tourists. Now though, even the majority of those that had loitered had already dispersed. The part of the beach K was standing on was a long way off from the fairground. He couldn't hear any of the voices or the music. Or perhaps it was because the sea wind rose up to carry away the noise. However, in his line of sight, the fine strokes of sketched light stood out amongst the vast dark background, and the flowing multitude of people and things as they followed the revolutions of the vaulted axis, appeared at that instant to be so beautiful and unreal, like a ghostly gathering of the after images of light...

At that time the beach was deserted. The fluorescent blue crescent of the moon had already shown its face hesitantly in the midst of the thin cloud cover. By the light of the moon, K could see the edge of the sea amidst the darkness, wave after wave of spray licked rhythmically at the beach.

It was just then that K suddenly saw Eurydice.

And at the same moment, Eurydice caught sight of K.

There had been something occupying the darkness of an intangible space, impenetrable to the moonlight. It was like a shadowy figure surfacing from the dark realms of consciousness in a dream. K suddenly saw, only a few metres ahead, at an extremely close distance, a woman standing alone, facing the direction of the sea.

It was at this moment that the woman turned to face him. The moonlight shone on her face. K immediately recognised her. And judging from the expression on her face, the woman recognised K too.

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids02It was Eurydice. Black-haired Eurydice. They had first met two years ago on the new recruit training course at the Directorate of National Intelligence in Hong Kong. It was a course dealing with a hypothetical case in teams. Someone of K's level would not normally teach this kind of mini-course. However, due to the small scale of the training course that time (only 12 new trainees in total were in attendance), and as the lecturer who was originally going to lead the course was sent to Istanbul at short notice, K was temporarily relieving him of his duties, to instruct the course.

Eurydice looked quite quiet. She had an elegant quality to her. K remembered the dark brown irises of her serious eyes, the curve in the bridge of her nose, and the glimmering sheen of her short hair back then. K remembered also the sly expression that flashed from those eyes that looked like those of a cute animal when she smiled in that sweet way she had. Like something very, very light had suddenly dropped into the pond.

To put it more clearly: after a long intervening period of time, K realized, he remembered almost every detail of her appearance and bearing from the first time he saw her...

Of course, Eurydice was quite beautiful. But her beauty wasn't by any means of a particularly uncommon sort. K was already 35 then, and had seen his fair share of beautiful women. K couldn't help but be perplexed: what was it that led him to remember so much about her?

However, except for this, it seemed there was nothing else. Even though the impression of those little details about Eurydice would occasionally flash across K's mind, he wouldn't have said that he often thought of her. K for a while even thought that Eurydice must have had some sort of conspicuous, innate particularity about her, and so he unconsciously gave rein to the efficiency and memory power of an intelligence agent.

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids01

Under the pale blue light of the moon, they waved at each other. Then they immediately started to laugh. They probably laughed because of the stunned look on each of their faces at first.

"Why is the Agency Director in a place like this? ... Are you here on vacation, Sir?" Eurydice asked.

"Eh... yeah, I'm here on vacation... you don't need to call me Sir." K laughed and said: "The scenery is beautiful here. What about you? On vacation too?"

"I suppose you could say that." Eurydice paused for a moment: "Eh... actually, I grew up around here. I came back to visit..."

"Really?" K raised his eyebrows, and joked, "You can just be honest; I know our unit has a case underway around here..."

"No, no," Eurydice laughed again, "... I came here, just to come home. To come home and have a look around again...”

There was a moment, even under such a gloomy light, when K thought he saw that smile of hers. Some light matter falling noiselessly into a pond, the feeling of calm ripples. But this time the falling happened in a shadow blacker than darkness. It made Eurydice seem further away than the actual short distance between them.

"Oh, so you were actually born in Taiwan..." said K.

"Yeah..." Eurydice paused. K was aware that she wanted to say something, but she didn't say it in the end.

"... So... so you know a few places off the tourist trail?" K considerately changed the topic of conversation.

Eurydice thought for a moment. "Yeah" She smiled again. This time it was of a brighter sort. "But, it's hard to describe how to get there..."

"What do you mean?" K's curiosity was piqued.

"Hmm...Just come with me. It's quite nearby; we'll be there in no time." Eurydice made a gesture: "We'll have to hope we're lucky though. You can't always see it..."

They started onwards along the coastline. They discussed the weather, they discussed the fish markets, piled with seafood, they discussed the moonlight, and they discussed the dreamy magnificence of the seaside amusement park, an engraved sketch of light on the dark curtain of night. Then Eurydice explained to him, along the coast to which they were headed, out on the open sea there were often fixed eddies produced perhaps due to submerged reefs on the seabed. In certain seasonal periods, because of the change in tides and ocean currents, the fixed eddies would become particularly powerful; this caused disaster for certain coastal water molluscs.

"They are descended from the Portuguese Man o' War." Eurydice said.

"Isn't that the most poisonous jelly-fish?"

"Yes, it was the most toxic jellyfish of the classic era. Now it's extinct..." Eurydice explained: "From here - if we're lucky - we'll be able to see a variant species of the Portuguese Man 'o War. It's got a very pretty, very cute name; it's called a Blue Child."

"A Blue Child... Is it still poisonous?"

"Yes, but its poison is a lot less powerful." Eurydice smiled, "Just as long as you don't fry it up and swallow it down, then it should be OK..."

K smiled too, "I'm not that much of a glutton..." K paused briefly. "But as for you, I'm not quite so sure."

"The Blue Child could almost be described as a species unique to Taiwanese Waters..." the sound of both of their laughter spilled out into the sea breeze of the dark night. Eurydice continued to explain to K, "A unique species, that is to say, it can't be found anywhere else in the world, only in Taiwan and Okinawa. And what's even more unusual is that, of the whole of Taiwan, it's only found in this area of the Northern coastal waters…A particular kind of Nitrate can be found in their bodies. Once this compound comes into contact with air it oxidizes instantly... look, over there."

Eurydice pointed to the ground not too far ahead on their right hand side. K saw two or three flakes of fluorescent blue, roughly the size of a fingernail resting quietly on the darkened moist sand. Like a shiny shard of glass.

"I didn't think we'd be able to see one so soon. I guess it's our lucky day..." Eurydice said: "That's a "fragment" of a Blue Child...when the eddy currents produced by the topography of the seabed take their lives, ripping their bodies to shreds, they then get exposed to the air, the oxidized nitrates then give out the fluorescent blue light even more strongly..."


EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids05K drew nearer and squatted, and felt the two dormant shards of blue fluorescence. Although it looked like pretty shards of broken glass, as he had anticipated it was slimy, cold and slippery. It was possible with some of them to make out whether the piece belonged to the medusa or the tentacles. Their brilliance was much brighter than that of the glow-worm, which had already been extinct for 100 years. K immediately perceived that his fingers were tainted with luminous blue flakes of powder.

(Luminous Blue from oxidization? This meant that there was some degree of combustion involved, K thought to himself.........That is to say, it seemed to be the kind of Mollusc that, when faced with inevitable disintegration, will spontaneously and quietly combust.)

"How does it feel?," Eurydice asked him: "Cold and gooey?"

"Yeah, yeah..." K dipped the tips of his fingers into the tidal pool by his feet, to wash the luminous blue powder off with sea water: "How strange and how beautiful..." K raised his head, and thanked her ceremoniously: "Thanks for bringing me to see these..."

"You might want to wait before you thank me," Eurydice laughed heartily. The emerald green pool was now completely luminous, the ripples of a spring afternoon. Her eyes narrowed into two curved arcs: “Maybe there will be some more up ahead...".

They continued to walk onward. As predicted, as they walked further along the road they saw more and more fragments of fluorescent blue. Evidently they had been carried along on to the bank with the rhythmic surge of the tidal waters. The moon was bright, K could vaguely make out the line between the wet and dry sand on the shore. And surrounding this line, the distribution of the blue luminous fragments looked as if fluorescent petals had been scattered along the road.

However, not long after, the fragments became more and more concentrated. They formed a vague imprint on the sand parallel to that of the waves. It looked like some sort of track left by something that had moved along the beach.

By the light of the moon, they walked around the sand banks and came to a small bay. Nearby a few tidal pools of different sizes lay still. On the beach giant planks of driftwood lay half buried in the sand, standing erect they threw colossal shadows on to the sand. Like the fractured skeleton of some prehistoric Behemoth.

The tide was still lapping rhythmically at the shore giving out an empty, ethereal echo. As far as the eye could see, the sea in the bay was already alight with a plane of the luminous blue light of jellyfish. Some of the fragments of the Blue Child jellyfish bodies were floating on the water, others rose and fell with wave after wave, and there were others still that had sunk to the bottom of the shallow and clear waters of the tidal pools, like the dizzying light given off by the constellations, silent and brilliant in the night sky. He didn't know why, but a fantasy flashed into K's mind that he'd never seen before: a massive Blue Child jellyfish darting about in the dark depths of the sea, the darkest depths. Except for the lone Blue Child, there was no other traces of existence. The Blue Child moved silently about. It's body was like a throbbing, transparent heart. It's tentacles spread eerily across the water, like Medusa's Ophidian hair...

At that moment, perhaps because of cloud coverage, the moon wasn't shining as brightly. Their parallel shadows merged into the massive shadow cast by the gigantic driftwood bones. K saw the mist streaming across the surface of the moon. The wind off the sea got stronger. Like a huge echo in a sealed off cavern, the mass of the wind filling the aural cavity, relentlessly assaulting the ear membrane.

K suddenly realized that this was actually a deathly banquet. The resplendent show of death's skeleton. In regard to jellyfish, it is only in the instant of their sudden death, after their bodies are torn to pieces by the eddies, that one can see this kind of sight.

 

"The last time I saw the Blue Child," Eurydice broke the silence, "was four or five years ago. It's been ages..."

"...so, you haven't come back home for that long?"

"Yeah..." Eurydice paused again, then changed the topic of conversation,

"I really liked a classic era Chinese poet. When I came back to this scene, it made me think of a few of his poems..."

"What kind of poetry?" K asked.

"Are you testing me on it?" Eurydice laughed.

"... have a go!," K laughed along with her, "you can't just say something halfway, then leave me in suspense... Tell me what kind of poetry it is"

"It's Gu Cheng's poetry. I don't think I can remember the whole thing...," Eurydice tilted her head in thought, "OK, I'll give it a try..."

 

Eurydice paused for a moment, then started to recite softly,

 

"...Behind the eternal canopy of the heavens

There is a pair of doves

They sleep, wings akimbo

The just forgotten kiss

Warms the home of the West wind..."

"...It starts, it starts to get cold

A floating handkerchief

It stops

Stopped, and floats afar once again

On the brown banks of the Samoan shore

The bride walks towards the ocean..."

 

"There is one other poem..." Eurydice smiled, her face imperceptibly flushed.

 

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids08

"...There is iron on the door, on the sea

There is rusty rain...

"Some people sleep on a bed

Some people float on the sea

Some people sink to the sea floor

Comets are a kind of dish

The moon is a silver cup

Ever floating, decorated with that slice

Of beautiful lemon, beautiful...," She paused for an instant before continuing,

"Don't speak, I don't know

I don't know myself..."

Eurydice's voice was focused and calm. In spite of the strong wind, her voice was unaffected by anything, like a fine, tensile fibre, cutting cleanly through the wind, and cutting through the vast layers of darkness that the wind penetrated.

It was just then that K felt keenly that something strange had happened to his body. As if some shapeless, colourless something, had invaded his chest cavity with a heaviness and fullness. That hueless something seemed to be a living body, the qualities of which seemed to seep in a circular manner with Eurydice's calm voice into the space outside the chest cavity. Like a flaw in his psyche, or a rupture. K felt his heartbeat and his breathing start to quicken, however they didn't become any shallower, but became warmer, heavier and deeper...

He felt strangely out of sorts. The feeling was so strange, that he wasn't sure if it was apt to to use the phrase "out of sorts" to describe it...

Because in that instant, K was in a happy frame of mind. K saw the moonlight shining on Eurydice's profile. She inclined her head to glance at K, and then as if abashed, she moved her gaze away. In such a dim light, it was hard to make out her face; however in the darkness, K thought he could see the ripples of gentle laughter. It was like the subtle beauty of insects with translucent wings bumbling along at a hair's breadth from the mirror-like stillness of the surface of an old pond on a windless afternoon in Spring. Their minuscule bumbling and sloping seemed also like dust or light fluff, floating along in circles around the centre of the pond...

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids06Thinking back on this moment, it was the start of their romance. On the way back, they followed the steadily dimmer fluorescent blue light on the ground, away from the moon, the cliffs of the sand dunes, and the shadow thrown by the off-white driftwood bones. The "Blue Children" without their luminosity, looked more like old dirty pieces of broken glass. They were both more subdued than they had been on the way...

In retrospect, that they were subdued was, of course, inevitable. K had been quite perplexed by his own reaction at the time. On their way back, K felt the hueless presence that had seemed to seep into his chest cavity gradually leave him. However, in the moment that he was rid of the warm feeling of heaviness and fullness, he felt somewhat cold. A coldness gently extending from the top of his head, to the pit of his stomach, around his waist, his arms and the palms of his hands. The cold sea breeze which hadn't bothered him at first, now penetrated the darkness to stir every hair and pore on his body to tremble...

(It couldn't have been more different from the second day they met. K still to this day remembers vividly the second day, how under the bright sun of the northern coast of Taiwan sand made up of crushed shells had clung to Eurydice's pale skin...)

(...With a flawless sky of pure blue. Without a thread of cloud. It was strange. It wasn't hot. Just bright. What K at first glance saw as a grain of rice-white sand, on closer inspection was not completely white, but was made up of a variety of different colours and textures. When the shell sand had formed a thin translucent layer on Eurydice's skin, the sun's rays, by way of the sand's texture, were diffracted at a certain angle. And that diffracted light at certain moments, would coat the entire scene in bright whiteness. In that moment, it brought a snow-blindness that lasted for a short while, but soon afterwards, it dissipated in what felt like a wave...)[inset side="right" title="Egoyan Zheng"] His real name is Zheng Qianci, and he was born in 1977. He graduated from the psychology department of NTU and read a Masters in Chinese Literature at Tamkang University. 2007 Man Asian Literary Prize Nominee 2008 Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award Nominee[/inset]

However, K was as relaxed and cheerful as before. The silence between he and Eurydice wasn't that awkward and tense kind of silence, but rather like a feeling that something which had been stretched taut had been slackened.

This was also part of what troubled K. Or rather what troubled him most keenly...

In the dark night, under the moonlight, they walked back towards the closing fish market and the fairground. The fine grains of sand under their feet gave off a soft, tender sound. The bright lights of the fish market had all gone dark; in the distance, there remained the faint flickering of a few small lights.The fairground was now in complete darkness, only the neon sign at the entrance was still reluctant to depart, the eyes of light blinking noiselessly to the rhythm of their flicker settings.

Like a shapeless tame beast, crouching.

 

 

 

Images: 1 PetteriO; 2 Ka13 ; 3 Johnny Myreng Henriksen ; 4 oneillkza ; 5 Isaac Wedin ; 6 redjar

 

週三, 01 九月 2010 00:00

藍孩子的故事

太平洋西界。島國台灣。

 

北海岸。日落時分的海灘。或許因為緯度偏低的關係,即便是在深秋之時,黑夜降臨得並不太早。然而雖說是日落時分,其實陽光早已隱沒至海平線之後了;只留下那大片尚且透著一點乳白色微光的寶藍色夜幕垂掛在天際。

 

K正獨自步行,離開碼頭邊燈光明亮的魚市場,沿著無人的沙灘漫步,享受入夜後冰涼海風的吹拂。遠處黑暗的濱海公路上方偶爾不規律地經過幾艘飛行船,但次數並不密集;要相隔許久,才能看見一次探照的光圈經過。

 

而在沒有飛行船經過的時候,在視野的邊緣,那遠處的蕩闊空間便是一片黑暗了。近處,霓虹閃爍,一座濱海的遊樂場裡,有著彩色拱頂的旋轉木馬猶兀自在黑沉沉的背景中亮著橙黃色的光。那顯然是個吸引人的景點,在遊人眾多的白天裡想必是相當熱鬧的。但現在,原先流連駐足的那些,多數都散去了。在K所站立的這片海灘上,距離遊樂場已是很遠了。無法聽見任何人聲或音樂的曲調。也或者是行走的海風把聲音都拂去了。然而在視覺裡,在突出於整片黑暗背景的、光的工筆輪廓上,隨著那拱頂軸心的旋轉而緩慢流動中的眾多人影物件,此刻看來卻如此美麗而虛幻,就像是一場集合了所有光之殘影的幽靈聚會一般。……

 

(上圖攝影/PetteriO

 

此時的海灘上一個人影也沒有。螢光藍的月牙已在稀薄的雲翳間遲疑地露了臉。透過月光,K可以看見海這一側的黑暗中,一道道白色的浪花規律地舔舐著沙灘。

 

便是在此刻,K突然看見了Eurydice。

 

而Eurydice也同時看見了K。

 

 

 

那是在一整片彷彿月光無法穿透的,佔據著不明確空間的黝暗裡。像是在夢境中從黑暗的意識深處浮現的人影。K突然看見,僅僅是在前方數公尺處,算是極近的距離,一名女子獨自站立著,面向海的方向。

 

女子便在這時轉過頭來。月光照在她的臉上。K立刻認出她來。而根據女子臉上的表情判斷,她應當也認出K來了。

 

 

 

那是Eurydice。黑髮的Eurydice。他們初識在兩年前的國家情報總署新進人員訓練課程裡。地點在香港。那是個假想案例的小組課程。原先以K的層級,是不可能會親自來主持這樣的小型課程的。但由於這次新進人員講習的規模相當小(總共只有12位新進人員參加),原先負責的講師又被臨時派往伊斯坦堡去了,是以K便暫時瓜代他的教學任務,出席了這次的小組課程。

 

 

 

Eurydice看來十分安靜。她有一種優雅的氣質。K記得她認真的深褐色眼瞳、她鼻樑的弧度、她彼時光澤閃亮的短髮。K記得她在甜甜地笑起來的時候,原先小動物般的眼睛會閃過一絲狡黠的神情。而那笑容又像是春天裡綠色小池塘的漣漪一般。像是有著幾片很輕很輕的什麼突然掉進了池塘裡。

 

或者可以這麼說:在許久之後,K才發現,他幾乎記得第一次見到她時她所有模樣與舉止的細節……

 

當然Eurydice算是相當美麗了。但這樣的美麗也並不至於太不常見。K那時已35歲,見過的美麗女人也不在少數了。K自己難免感覺納悶:是什麼引導著他,讓他記得了那麼多與她相關的事?

 

 

 

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids01然而除此之外,似乎也不再有些什麼別的了。儘管那些關於Eurydice的細節印象偶然會閃現在K的腦海中,然而K也並不認為自己時常想起她。K甚至一度以為,那或許是Eurydice擁有某種引人注目的、天生的特殊性,而K自己又在不知不覺中發揮了情報人員所應有的效率與記性的緣故。

 

淡藍色的月光下,他們彼此招手打了招呼。而後立刻便笑了出來。大約是為了原先彼此表情上的驚愕而笑的吧。

 

「局長怎麼會到這裡來?……來度假的嗎?」Eurydice問。

(右圖攝影/Johnny Myreng Henriksen

 

 

「啊……是的,是度假啊。……先別叫我局長了。」K笑著說:「風景很美的地方。你呢?也是來度假的嗎?」

 

「可以算是。」Eurydice停頓了一下:「嗯……其實,我是在這附近長大的。這次算是回鄉了……」

 

「真的嗎?」K揚起眉毛,開了個玩笑:「我想你可以直接說實話;據我所知,我們單位確實是正好有個這附近的案子必須處理……」

 

「不是的,不是的,」Eurydice又笑了起來:「……我來這裡,真的是回鄉了。只是回家鄉看看。……」

 


有一瞬間,即便是在如此晦暗的光度下,K覺得自己彷彿又看見了那個微笑。某種十分輕盈的物事悄悄墜落進池塘裡的,寂靜漣漪的感覺。但這回的墜落顯然是在一種比黑暗更黑的陰影中發生的。那使得此刻面對Eurydice的距離感覺起來並不像實際上那樣靠近。

 

「原來你是在台灣出生的啊。……」K說。

 

「是啊,……」Erydice停了下來。K察覺她像是有些話想說,卻終究沒有說出口。

 

「……那,……或許你知道其他一些觀光客不常去的好地方?」K體貼地換了話題。

 

Eurydice想了一下。「有的。」她又微笑起來。這次是較為明亮的那種了。「不過,很難說明是在哪裡哦。……」

 

「什麼意思?」K感到好奇了。

 

「嗯……跟我走吧。就在這附近,很快就到了。」Eurydice作了個手勢:「但是要靠點運氣。並不是常常可以看到的。……」

 

 

(下圖攝影 /oneillkza

 

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids05他們開始沿著海岸線慢慢向前走去。他們談論了天氣、談論了堆滿了新鮮海產的魚市場、談論了月光,也談論了像是在夜的布幕下鏤刻出光的輪廓的,華麗如夢的濱海遊樂場。而後Eurydice向他解釋,就在他們將要前去的某處海岸,在外海,或許是由於海底暗礁地形的緣故,常會有某些固定的渦流產生。在某些特定的季節時分,因為潮汐與洋流的變化,那固定之渦流將會特別強勁;而其結果,便是造成某些近海軟體動物的災難了。

 

「它們的祖先是葡萄牙戰艦水母。」Eurydice說。

 

「最毒的那種?」

 

「是的,就是古典時代裡那種毒性最強的水母。現在已經絕跡了……」Eurydice解釋:「我們在這裡──如果運氣夠好的話──會看到的,是葡萄牙戰艦水母的變異種。有個很美很可愛的名字,叫藍孩子。Blue Child。」

 

「藍孩子。……它還有毒性嗎?」

 

「有的,但只剩下一點點輕微的毒性了。」Eurydice笑了起來:「只要不把它們炒熟了吞下肚子裡去,大概是一點關係也沒有……」

 

K也笑了:「我很確定我沒有嘴饞到那種程度……」K稍作停頓。「但至於你,我可就不敢保證了……」

 

「藍孩子幾乎就是一種『台灣海域特有種』了……」兩人的笑聲散落在黑夜裡的海風中。Eurydice繼續向K說明:「特有種,也就是說,全世界其他地方都沒有。它只在台灣和沖繩出現。而且更罕見的是,整座台灣島,也只有在北海岸近海這一帶才有。……它的體內含有某種特定結構的氮化合物。當這種化合物暴露在空氣中時,會立刻氧化……看,那就是了。」

 

 

 

Eurydice指向右前方不遠處的地面。K看見兩三片約略指甲大小的藍色瑩光靜靜棲息在潮濕的深色沙地上。像是發亮的玻璃碎片一般。

 

「沒想到這麼快就遇見它了。我們運氣還不錯呢……」Eurydice說:「那就是藍孩子的……『破片』了……當海底地形配合潮汐所產生的渦流奪去它們的生命、撕碎它們的軀體之後,那暴露在空氣中,氧化後的氮化合物,便會發出這樣的藍色瑩光……」

 

 

 

K走近了些,低下身去,摸了摸那兩三片安靜蟄伏著的藍色瑩光。看來像是美麗的玻璃碎片一般的東西,倒是如預期一般帶著膠質的冰涼軟滑。有些還可辨認出是屬於觸手或傘狀本體的某一部分。它們的亮度比起早在100年前便已絕種的螢火蟲還高上許多。K隨即察覺,自己的手指上也沾染了些粉末般的藍光破片。

 

(氧化之後的藍光?意思是說,那等於是某種程度的「燃燒」了。K想。……也就是說,那是一種當軀體無可挽回地碎裂之時,會允許自己在靜默中自燃的軟體生物?……)

 

 

 

「感覺如何?」Eurydice問他:「涼涼軟軟的是嗎?」

 

「是啊,是啊……」K將指掌浸入腳邊的小潮池中,以海水洗去瑩光藍的粉末:「很新奇,也很美麗……」K抬起頭,客套地道謝:「謝謝你帶我來看這些。……」

 

「先別忙著謝我,」Eurydice笑得十分開心。翠綠色的池塘裡現在是完全光亮著的、春天午後的漣漪了。她的一雙眼睛瞇成了兩道彎彎的弧線:「再走下去,或許會有更多哦。……」

 

 

 

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids08他們繼續往前走。沿路果然見到愈來愈多的藍色瑩光破片。它們顯然都是隨著那規律湧來的海潮來到岸上的。月光明亮,K可以在沙灘上隱約分辨出一道乾與濕的界線。而在那界線四周,藍光破片的分佈就像是沿路灑下的瑩光花瓣一般。

 

然而沒過多久,破片更是愈來愈密集了。它們在沙灘上隱約形成一條平行於海浪的印痕。彷彿曾經於此行走的什麼所遺留下的軌跡。

 

藉由月光的指引,他們繞過一處沙壁,來到一個小小的海灣。近處靜靜平躺著幾座大小不一的潮池。而海灘上,幾節巨大的漂流木半埋在沙中,高聳的部分在沙地上投下龐大的陰影。像是某種史前巨獸斷裂的骨骼一般。

 

(右圖攝影/Isaac Wedin

 

 

海潮仍規律地舔舐著沙灘,發出某種空洞而細索的迴響。放眼望去,此處海灣裡的海已然亮滿了大片水母的藍色瑩光。那藍孩子水母軀體之破片,有些正漂浮在水面上,有些正隨著一波又一波的浪潮起伏著,還有些顯然是落在了那些清淺潮池的水底。彷彿在夜空中沉靜而燦爛地釋放著暈光的星群。不知為何,K的腦海中突然出現一個他從沒見過的幻象:一隻巨型的藍孩子水母在黑暗的海水中游動著。那是一處極黑暗的海水。除了這隻單獨存在的,巨大的藍孩子之外,沒有任何其他事物的存在。藍孩子寂靜地游動著。牠的身軀像是一顆搏動著的、透明的心臟。牠的觸手在水中妖異地款擺著,像是美杜莎的蛇髮……

 

而此刻,或許是雲翳遮掩的緣故,月光已經沒那麼亮了。兩人並行的長長陰影隱沒入那漂流木巨骨更為巨大的陰影之中。他們都靜默了下來。K看見月亮表面薄薄的霧氣快速地流動著。海風變強了。像是某座密閉腔室的巨大回音,風的質量灌飽了耳殼內部,毫不倦怠地撞擊在耳膜上。

 

K突然想到,這其實是一場死亡的盛宴。死亡之屍骸的華麗表演。對水母來說,也唯有在死亡驟然臨至的當下,藉由渦流,將自己的體軀粉碎裂解之後,才得以看見這樣的景象了。

 

 

 

「上次看到藍孩子,」Eurydice打破了沉默:「已經是四五年前的事了。很久了。……」

 

「……所以,已經那麼久沒有回鄉了?」

 

「嗯,是的……」Eurydice又靜默了一會兒,而後轉換了話題:「那時候很喜歡一位古典時代的中國詩人。回來時看到這種景致,就想到了他的幾首詩……」

 

「什麼樣的詩?」K問。

 

「要考我背不背得出來嗎?」Eurydice笑了。

 

「……說說看嘛!」K也跟著笑了:「說了一半又不說,你有故意吊人胃口的嫌疑哦……我很想知道那是什麼樣的詩。……」

 

「那是顧城的詩。大概是早就記不完全了呢……」Eurydice偏著頭想了想:「好吧,那麼我就試試看好了……」

 

(下圖攝影/redjar

 

 

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids06Eurydice停了一下,而後開始輕輕地唸誦:

 

 

 

「……永恒的天幕後

 

會有一對白鴿子

 

睡了,鬆開了翅膀

 

剛剛遺忘的吻

 

還溫暖著西南風的家鄉……」

 

「……開始,開始很凉

 

飄浮的手帕

 

停住了

 

停住,又漂向遠方

 

在棕色的薩摩亞岸邊

 

新娘正走向海洋……」

 

 

 

「還有另一首。……」Eurydice微笑著,臉上似乎泛著看不見的紅暈。

 

 

 

「……門上有鐵,海上

 

有生鏽的雨 ……

 

「一些人睡在床上

 

一些人飄在海上

 

一些人沉在海底

 

彗星是一種食具

 

月亮是銀杯子

 

始終飄著,裝著那片

 

美麗的檸檬,美麗……」她稍稍停頓了一下,而後繼續:

 

「別說了,我不知道

 

我不知道自己……」

 

 

 

Eurydice的聲音很專注、很沉靜。儘管海風強大,那聲音卻像是某種不受影響的、材質堅韌的細微纖維一般,清楚地穿透了風,以及風所穿透的那些巨大的,層次相異繁複的黑暗。

 

便是在那時,K清楚感覺到自己的身體突然有了某種奇異的不適。像是有什麼無形無色之物,充盈地、鈍重而流動地侵入了自己的胸腔。那無形無色之物似乎具備有某種活體生命的特質,而那樣的特質又隨著Eurydice靜定的嗓音以某種流體的形式滲入了胸腔之外的體內間隙。那像是自己精神上的一個缺陷、一個破口。K感覺自己的心跳與呼吸的頻率都加快了,然而並不變得輕淺,反而變得溫熱、鈍重而深沉……

 

一種陌生的不適感。或者說,那感覺確實如此陌生,以至於K並不真正知道該不該用「不適」來形容它……

 

 

 

因為在當下,K的精神其實是愉快的。K看見月光照在Eurydice的側臉上。她偏過頭來看了K一眼,而後又像是有些羞赧一般,將目光轉開了去。如此晦暗的光度下,原本無法看清人的表情;然而黑暗中,K卻似乎又看見了那漣漪一般清淺的笑。像是原先那座春天的小水塘,在無風的下午,在平靜如鏡的水面上,忽然有某種細小而美麗的,長著一對透明薄翅的昆蟲,在極貼近水面的飛行中蹎躓了。而那一個又一個小小的蹎躓與傾斜,卻又像是灰塵或某種輕盈的羽絮,繞著湖心打了一圈水漂一般……

 

 

(右圖攝影/Ka13

 

EgoyanZheng_StoryofBlueKids02此刻回想,那便是他們戀情的開始了。在回程的路上,他們沿著地上逐漸黯淡的藍色瑩光離開那月光、沙崖與灰白色漂流木巨骨所構成的陰影。失去了瑩光的「藍孩子」看起來更像是某種髒舊的玻璃破片。兩人都比來時的路上沈默了許多。……

 

事後臆測,那沈默毋寧是理所當然的。彼時,K正對自己的當下的反應感到迷惑。在回程的路上,K感覺那彷彿侵入胸腔之中的無形無色之物慢慢地離開了。然而此刻,抽去了那充盈、鈍重而溫熱的什麼,卻令K感到有些寒冷。一種輕微的,自頭頂蔓延至胸口、腰際、上肢與手掌的寒冷。像是原先並不介意那海風的涼意,而此刻全身之髮膚,卻因那海風穿透黑暗的吹拂而極細微地顫抖了起來……

 

 

 

(那與他們第二日的相約是多麼不同啊。K至今猶清楚記得,第二日,台灣北海岸的豔陽下,細碎的貝殼沙停留在Eurydice白色肌膚上的畫面。……)

 

(……背景是純淨無瑕的藍天。一絲雲的痕跡也沒有。很奇怪地,那感覺並不熾熱,而竟只是一種純粹的明亮。K發現,乍看之下彷彿一片米白的貝殼沙,在細看之時,其實並不全是米白色的,而是一些多紋彩而多稜角的細小破片。當貝殼沙在Eurydice的肌膚上薄薄敷上一層半透明的沙膜時,那日光便似乎能持續在沙的質地上折射出各種角度的,碎裂的光。而那碎裂的光彷彿又會在某個時刻曝白漫淹了整個畫面。在那些時刻裡,它們帶來一次雪盲,稍作暫留,隨後卻又像是搖晃的水波一般盪開了去……)

 

 

 

然而K的精神依舊是舒緩而愉快的。他與Eurydice之間的沉默也並非令人感覺尷尬或緊張的沉默,反而是另一種像是原先繃緊著的什麼,突然被放鬆了的感覺。

 

這同樣是令K感到困惑的部分。或許也可以說,更困惑的部分……

 

 

 

暗夜的月光下,他們走回打烊的魚市場和遊樂場。沙粒細密的質地在他們的腳步之下摩挲出細柔的、彼此愛撫的音響。魚市場原本燦亮的燈火已然全數暗下;遠遠看去,只剩下幾盞隱約搖曳的小燈。而遊樂場裡已是全然的黑暗了,只有入口處的霓虹招牌還像是捨不得離開一般,依照那明滅設定的規律無聲地眨動著光的眼睛。

 

彷彿一隻溫馴地蹲踞著的,無形體的獸。

 

 

本文亦見於2010年9月號《人籟論辨月刊》

 

No74_small 想知道更多精采內容,請購買本期雜誌!

 

您可以選擇紙本版PDF版

海外讀者如欲選購,請在此查詢(紙本版PDF版訂閱全年份

捐款

捐款e人籟,為您提供更多高品質的免費內容

金額: 

事件日曆

« 二月 2019 »
星期一 星期二 星期三 星期四 星期五 星期六 星期日
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28      

目前有 3596 個訪客 以及 沒有會員 在線上