少雨的土地
The Land of Little Rain

  • 作   者:

    玛莉·奥斯汀
    MARY AUSTIN

  • 出版社:

    外语教学与研究出版社
    Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press

  • 语   言:

    英文

  • 支   持:

  • 电子书:

    ¥3.90

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《少雨的土地》中的14篇短篇作品确立了作者在文坛的名望。本书以作者在沙漠小镇十二年的生活经历为背景写作而成,它改变了人们对沙漠的认识。作家在书中向我们传递了一个信息,即现代人应当逐渐放弃以人为中心的观念,以平等的身份去接近自然,经历自然,融入自然,过一种更为简朴、也更为精神化的生活。

Harper Connelly heads to Doraville, North Carolina, to find a missing boy—one of several teenage boys who have disappeared over the last five years. And all of them are calling for Harper. She finds them, buried in the frozen ground. Soon Harper will learn more than she cared to about the dark mysteries and long-hidden secrets of Doraville—knowledge of the dead that makes her next in line to end up in an ice-cold grave.

玛莉·奥斯汀(Mary Austin,1868-1934年)美国女作家,生于伊利诺斯州的卡林维尔,后移居加利福尼亚州和新墨西哥州。一生中谢了32部书、200多篇散文和3个剧本。她因研究加利福尼亚州的印第安人和沙漠生活而著名。《少雨的土地》(1903年)中的14篇短篇作品确立了她在文坛的名望。

Mary Austin (1868-1934) was born in Card Linville, Illinois. Then she came to California in 1887 to homestead with her family in Kern County, in the Great Central Valley. She is the author of many novels, essays, and story collections, including 32 books, 200 more essays and 3 scripts. As an American writer, she is famous for researching California Indians and desert-dwelling. The 14 short essays in The Land of Little Rain established her fame in the literary world.

East away from the Sierras, south from Panamint and Amargosa, east and south many an uncounted mile, is the Country of Lost Borders.

Ute, Paiute, Mojave, and Shoshone inhabit its frontiers, and as far into the heart of it as a man dare go. Not the law, but the land sets the limit. Desert is the name it wears upon the maps, but the Indian's is the better word. Desert is a loose term to indicate land that supports no man; whether the land can be bitted and broken to that purpose is not proven. Void of life it never is, however dry the air and villainous the soil.

This is the nature of that country. There are hills, rounded, blunt, burned, squeezed up out of chaos, chrome and vermilion painted, aspiring to the snowline. Between the hills lie high level-looking plains full of intolerable sun glare, or narrow valleys drowned in a blue haze. The hill surface is streaked with ash drift and black, unweathered lava flows. After rains water accumulates in the hollows of small closed valleys, and, evaporating, leaves hard dry levels of pure desertness that get the local name of dry lakes. Where the mountains are steep and the rains heavy, the pool is never quite dry, but dark and bitter, rimmed about with the efflorescence of alkaline deposits. A thin crust of it lies along the marsh over the vegetating area, which has neither beauty nor freshness. In the broad wastes open to the wind the sand drifts in hummocks about the stubby shrubs, and between them the soil shows saline traces. The sculpture of the hills here is more wind than water work, though the quick storms do sometimes scar them past many a year's redeeming. In all the Western desert edges there are essays in miniature at the famed, terrible Grand Canon, to which, if you keep on long enough in this country, you will come at last.

Since this is a hill country one expects to find springs, but not to depend upon them; for when found they are often brackish and unwholesome, or maddening, slow dribbles in a thirsty soil. Here you find the hot sink of Death Valley, or high rolling districts where the air has always a tang of frost. Here are the long heavy winds and breathless calms on the tilted mesas where dust devils dance, whirling up into a wide, pale sky. Here you have no rain when all the earth cries for it, or quick downpours called cloud-bursts for violence. A land of lost rivers, with little in it to love; yet a land that once visited must be come back to inevitably. If it were not so there would be little told of it.

This is the country of three seasons. From June on to November it lies hot, still, and unbearable, sick with violent unrelieving storms; then on until April, chill, quiescent, drinking its scant rain and scanter snows; from April to the hot season again, blossoming, radiant, and seductive. These months are only approximate; later or earlier the rain-laden wind may drift up the water gate of the Colorado from the Gulf, and the land sets its seasons by the rain.

  • PREFACE

  • THE LAND OF LITTLE RAIN

  • WATER TRAILS OF THE CERISO

  • THE SCAVENGERS

  • THE POCKET HUNTER

  • SHOSHONE LAND

  • JIMVILLE—A BRET HARTE TOWN

  • MY NEIGHBOR'S FIELD

  • THE MESA TRAIL

  • THE BASKET MAKER

  • THE STREETS OF THE MOUNTAINS

  • WATER BORDERS

  • OTHER WATER BORDERS

  • NURSLINGS OF THE SKY

  • THE LITTLE TOWN OF THE GRAPE VINES

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