Truyện Kiều – The Tale of Kieu (Verses 1405-1440)

Truyện Kiều (Câu 1405-1440)

Nguyễn Du

1405.
Đất bằng nổi sóng đùng đùng,
Phủ đường sai lá phiếu hồng thôi tra.
Cùng nhau theo gót sai nha,
Song song vào trước sân hoa lạy quỳ.
Trông lên mặt sắt đen sì,

1410.
Lập nghiêm trước đã ra uy nặng lời:
“Gã kia dại nết chơi bời,
Mà con người thế là người đong đưa.
Tuồng chi hoa thải hương thừa,
Mượn màu son phấn đánh lừa con đen.

1415.
Suy trong tình trạng bên nguyên,
Bề nào thì cũng chưa yên bề nào.
Phép công chiếu án luận vào.
Có hai đường ấy muốn sao mặc mình;
Một là: cứ phép gia hình,

1420.
Một là: lại cứ lầu xanh phó về.
Nàng rằng: “Đã quyết một bề,
Nhện này vương lấy tơ kia mấy lần.
Đục trong thân cũng là thân,
Yếu thơ vâng chịu trước sân lôi đình”.

1425.
Dạy rằng: “Cứ phép gia hình”
Ba cây chập lại một cành mẫu đơn!
Phận đành chi dám kêu oan,
Đào hoen quện má, liễu tan tác mày!
Một sân lầm cát đã đầy,

1430.
Gương lờ nước thủy, mai gầy vóc xương.
Nghĩ tình chàng Thúc mà thương,
Nẻo xa trông thấy, lòng càng xót xa.
Khóc rằng: “Oan khốc vì ta!
Có nghe lời trước, chớ đà lụy sau.

1435.
Nóng lòng chẳng biết nghĩ sâu,
Để ai trăng tủi, hoa sầu vì ai”.
Phủ đường nghe thoảng vào tai,
Động lòng lại gạn đến lời riêng tây.
Sụt sùi chàng mới thưa ngay,

(English Version)

The Tale of Kieu (Verses 1405-1440)

Author: Nguyễn Du
Translation: Đặng Hoàng Lan

1405.
He delivered his report and the sheriff joined him in his rage.
He sent a writ stating that the lovers must convene with the court
Quickly dispatching his constables to escort the couple to the Judge.
Dramatically, they lie prostrate waiting for the enquiries to begin,
Limp as they saw the judge’s hard expression and his steely frown.

1410.
The Mandarin began with a display of might, frightening Thuc,
“You there! You parasite, you’ve enjoyed your foolish fling
With this… this slut! She is less than nothing, a simple cheat!
Woman, your scent is as the odor of waste – and you have no shame!
Look at him, an easily deceived simpleton who fell for your fakery!

1415.
According to the plaintiff’s suit, your vices and misdeeds,
Without doubt, constitute as complex a case as I have seen.
I, hereby decree two equitable solutions, to mete out justice,
You are free to choose whichever sentence you will bear.
The first is that you should endure the legal punishment,

1420.
The second option is to be escorted back to your bawdy-house.”
Kieu said, “My mind’s made up, never again shall I be caught
As a helpless fly, trapped to die in that prison of a spider web.
A human, whether right, wrong, clean or dirty, remains a human.
Clearly I am frail, even so I’d rather undergo legal punishment.”

1425.
“Beat her for being a whore!” the Mandarin snarled savagely.
To whip this peony they used three canes bound into one.
Resigned to her fate, she uttered not a whine, nor a single word.
Her peach cheeks drained to pale and her eyebrows met fully.
Knocked to her knees on the dirt floor she was sprawled in the mud,

1430.
Her face blurred as tarnished glass, body bent, as an apricot branch.
Oh! But poor young hero Thuc! Stop to consider his sad plight!
Thuc, guts twisting, watched but was dying with his pity for her,
Crying out, “Oh, unjust fate! It’s my fault she suffers so!
She would not have to undergo all this had I heeded her wisdom.

1435.
My denial hid the possible consequences of my heart’s idiocy
And I have only harmed my beloved, set her afire, steeped in pain.”
His lamentations shocked the judge, it was a different perspective,
And he bade Thuc come forward to explain further.
Relieved to be asked and boiling over with despair, he told his story.

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