▲美國非洲裔女詩人伊莉莎白?亞利山大(Elizabeth Alexander)20日應邀在新總統歐巴馬就職大典朗誦詩歌。(美聯社)

 美國非洲裔女詩人伊莉莎白.亞利山大(Elizabeth Alexander)廿日應邀在新總統歐巴馬就職大典朗誦詩歌,她以雄渾堅定的吟道:「我們每天忙著,經過彼此,有時看著對方有時忽視,有時與對方說話有時沉默。」她的散文詩直接低調,平實中見力量,獲得同僚詩人的讚賞。

 亞利山大的詩句沒有花梢的節奏或韻律,談論過去與現在美國人民的日常生活;「我們身邊盡是噪音,我們身邊圍繞著刺藤、干擾與喧囂。而我們的祖先就在我們的談論之中。有人縫補制服的破洞,修補輪胎,修補那些亟欲被修理的事物。」
 歐巴馬就職 亞利山大朗誦詩
 四十六歲的亞利山大為傑出美國詩人,作品曾入圍美國普立茲獎詩作類決選,她也是耶魯大學「非裔美國人研究」教授兼歐巴馬總統之友。《華盛頓郵報》廿一日報導,以詩作捕捉難以擒獲的歷史時刻,此一任務,最佳人選非亞利山大莫屬。美國前桂冠詩人品斯基(Robert Pinsky)表示,在總統就職大典朗誦詩歌非常困難,然而亞利山大做得很莊嚴,富有想像。

 亞利山大之前,僅有三位詩人在總統就職大典朗誦詩歌,分別是安潔蘿(Maya Angelou)及威廉斯(Miller Williams),兩人在柯林頓第二任就職典禮席間誦詩;另一位便是佛洛斯特(Robert Frost),他在甘迺迪總統就職大典時獻詩。很奇怪的是:美國桂冠詩人的職責,並不包括在總統就職典禮誦詩(就算要求,詩人可能也不接受)。

 美國史上第四位 平實見力量

 亞利山大的誦詩進行下去,她吟道:「我們必須找一個安全的地方,我們必須走進超越現有視野的未來。」亞利山大說:「許多人為了今日捐軀。讚揚那些帶領我們走到今日的祖先,那些建造鐵路,打造橋樑,收成棉花,打造出今日閃亮美國的先人。」

 品斯基表示,工作的信念,苦幹實幹建設美國,還有今日必須辛勤努力,恢復國家元氣,讓亞利山大的詩作呼應著歐巴馬的就職演說。亞利山大頌詩最後一段,令前桂冠詩人柯林斯(Billy Collins)印象深刻,他表示,要寫出那樣的詩,必須超然崇高,但她毫不造作。亞利山大最後吟道:「最強大的字是愛,超越種族、血脈、國籍的愛,這樣的愛將展現光芒,無私的愛將引領我們超越怨懟。在今天這片光芒、冬天的空氣之下,任何事都能完成,新句已經開始。」


Inaugural Poem


Published: January 20, 2009
The following is a transcript of the inaugural poem recited by Elizabeth Alexander, as provided by CQ transcriptions.

Praise song for the day.

Each day we go about our business, walking past each other, catching each others' eyes or not, about to speak or speaking. All about us is noise. All about us is noise and bramble, thorn and din, each one of our ancestors on our tongues. Someone is stitching up a hem, darning a hole in a uniform, patching a tire, repairing the things in need of repair.

Someone is trying to make music somewhere with a pair of wooden spoons on an oil drum with cello, boom box, harmonica, voice.

A woman and her son wait for the bus.

A farmer considers the changing sky; A teacher says, "Take out your pencils. Begin."

We encounter each other in words, words spiny or smooth, whispered or declaimed; words to consider, reconsider.

We cross dirt roads and highways that mark the will of someone and then others who said, "I need to see what's on the other side; I know there's something better down the road."

We need to find a place where we are safe; We walk into that which we cannot yet see.

Say it plain, that many have died for this day. Sing the names of the dead who brought us here, who laid the train tracks, raised the bridges, picked the cotton and the lettuce, built brick by brick the glittering edifices they would then keep clean and work inside of.

Praise song for struggle; praise song for the day. Praise song for every hand-lettered sign; The figuring it out at kitchen tables.

Some live by "Love thy neighbor as thy self."

Others by first do no harm, or take no more than you need.

What if the mightiest word is love, love beyond marital, filial, national. Love that casts a widening pool of light. Love with no need to preempt grievance.

In today's sharp sparkle, this winter air, anything can be made, any sentence begun.

On the brink, on the brim, on the cusp -- praise song for walking forward in that light.

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