Lesson 96
The dead return
亡灵返乡
First listen and then answer the question.
听录音,然后回答以下问题。
What happens to the lanterns at the end of the festival?
A Festival for the Dead is held once a year in Japan. This festival is a cheerful occasion, for on this day, the dead are said to return to their homes and they are welcomed by the living. As they are expected to be hungry after their long journey, food is laid out for them. Specially-made lanterns are hung outside each house to help the dead to find their way. All night long, people dance and sing. In the early morning, the food that had been laid out for the dead is thrown into a river or into the sea as it is considered unlucky for anyone living to eat it. In towns that are near the sea, the tiny lanterns which had been hung in the streets the night before, are placed into the water when the festival is over. Thousands of lanterns slowly drift out to sea guiding the dead on their return journey to the other world. This is a moving spectacle, for crowds of people stand on the shore watching the lanterns drifting away until they can be seen no more.
New words and expressions 生词和短语
festival n. 节日
lantern n. 灯笼
spectacle n. 景象,壮观,场面
参考译文
日本每年过一次“亡灵节”。这个节日是个欢乐的日子,因为在这一天,据说死去的人要回到他们的家里来,活着的人则对他们表示欢迎。因为预料到他们在经过长途旅行之后会感到饥饿,所以为他们摆放好了食品。特制的灯笼挂在各家的门外,为的是帮助亡灵看清道路。整个夜晚人们载歌载舞。一大早,人们便把为死者摆放的食品扔进河中或海里,因为人们认为活着的人吃了这些东西是不吉利的。在靠海的城镇中,头天夜里挂在大街小巷的小灯笼在节后就放在了水里。成千上万只灯笼慢慢漂向大海,指引着亡灵返回另一个世界。这是一个感人的场面,人们成群地伫立在海岸上,注视着灯笼远去,直到再也看不见为止。
 

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