DANSK

Klokkedybet

ENGLISH

The bell deep


"Ding dang! ding dang!" klinger det fra Klokkedybet i Odense Å. – Hvad er det for en å? – Den kender hvert barn i Odense by, den løber neden om haverne, fra slusen til vandmøllen hen under træbroerne. I åen vokser gule åkander, brunfjerede rør og den sorte, fløjlsagtige dunhammer, så høj og så stor; gamle, revnede piletræer, svajede og drejede, hænger langt ud i vandet på Munkemose side og ved blegmandens eng, men lige overfor er have ved have, den ene anderledes end den anden, snart med dejlige blomster og lysthuse, glatte og pæne, ligesom småt dukkestads, snart står de kun med kål eller der er slet ingen have at se, thi de store hyldebuske breder sig dér og hænger langt ud over det rindende vand, som hist og her er dybere, end man kan nå med åren. Ud for det gamle frøkenkloster er det dybeste sted, det kaldes Klokkedybet, og dér bor åmanden; han sover om dagen, når solen skinner gennem vandet, men kommer frem ved stjerneklare nætter og måneskin. Han er meget gammel; mormor har hørt om ham af sin mormor, siger hun, han lever et ensomt liv, har slet ingen at tale med uden den store, gamle kirkeklokke. Engang hang den i kirketårnet, ja nu er der ingen spor hverken af tårn eller kirke, den, der kaldtes Sankt Albani.
"Ding-dong! Ding-dong!" rings out from the Bell Deep in the Odense River. And what sort of river is that? Why, every child in Odense Town knows it well. It flows around the foot of the gardens, from the locks to the water mill, under the wooden bridges. Yellow water lilies grow in the river, and brown, featherlike reeds, and the black, velvety bulrushes, so high and so thick. Decayed old willow trees, bent and gnarled, hang far over the water beside the monks' marsh and the pale meadows; but a little above are the many gardens, each very different from the next. Some have beautiful flowers and arbors as clean and neat as dolls' houses, while some have only cabbages, and in others no attempts at formal gardens can be seen at all, only great elder trees stretching out and overhanging the running water, which in places is deeper that an oar can measure.


"Ding dang! ding dang!" klang klokken, da tårnet stod, og en aften, da sol gik ned og klokken var i sit stærkeste sving, rev den sig løs og fløj gennem luften; det blanke malm skinnede gloende i de røde stråler.
The deepest part is right opposite the old nunnery. It is called the Bell Deep, and it is there that the Merman lives. By day, when the sun shines through the water, he sleeps, but on clear, starry, or moonlit nights he comes forth. He is very old; Grandmother has heard of him from her grandmother, she says; and he lives a lonely life, with hardly anyone to speak to except the big old church bell. It used to hang up in the steeple of the church, but now no trace is left either of the steeple or of the church itself, which used to be called St. Alban's.


"Ding dang! ding dang! nu går jeg i seng!" sang klokken og fløj ud i Odense Å, hvor der var dybest, og derfor kaldes nu det sted Klokkedybet; men ikke fik den søvn eller hvile dér! hos åmanden ringer og klinger den, så at det stundom høres herop igennem vandet, og mange folk siger, at det betyder: Nu skal der nogen dø, men det er ikke derfor, nej den ringer og fortæller for åmanden, som nu ikke længere er alene.
"Ding-dong! Ding-dong!" rang the Bell when it hung in the steeple. But one evening, just as the sun was setting and the Bell was in full swing, it tore loose and flew through the air, its shining metal glowing in the red beams of the sunset. "Ding-dong! Ding-dong! Now I'm going to bed!" sang the Bell, and it flew into the deepest spot of the Odense River, which is why that spot is now called the Bell Deep. But it found neither sleep nor rest there, for it still rings and clangs down at the Merman's; often it can be heard up above, through the water, and many people say that it rings to foretell the death of someone-but that is not the reason; no, it really rings to talk to the Merman, who then is no longer alone.


Og hvad fortæller klokken? Den er så gammel, så gammel, er der sagt, den var til, længe før mormors mormor blev født, og dog er den i alder et barn kun imod åmanden, der er en gammel, en stille, en underlig én med åleskindsbukser og skælfiskstrøje med gule åkander i, siv om håret og andemad på skægget og det er just ikke kønt.
And what stories does the Bell tell? It is so very old; it was cast before Grandmother's grandmother was born, yet it was scarcely more than a child compared with the Merman. He is a quiet, odd-looking old fellow, with pants of eelskin, a scaly coat decorated with yellow water lilies, bulrushes in his hair, and duckweeds in his beard. He isn't exactly handsome to look at.


Hvad klokken fortæller, skal der år og dage til at give igen; den fortæller ud og ind, tit og ofte det samme, snart kort, snart langt, ligesom den lyster; den fortæller om gamle tider, de hårde, de mørke tider.
It would take years and days to repeat everything the Bell has said; it tells the same stories again and again, in great detail, sometimes lengthening them, sometimes shortening them, according to its mood. It tells of the olden times, those hard and gloomy times.


"Ved Sankt Albani kirke deroppe i tårnet, hvor klokken hang, kom munken, han var både ung og smuk, men tankefuld som ingen anden; han så fra lugen ud over Odense Å, da dens leje var bredt og mosen en sø, han så over den og den grønne vold, "Nonnebakken" derovre, hvor klostret lå, hvor lyset skinnede fra nonnens celle; han havde kendt hende vel – og han huskede derpå, og hans hjerte slog stærkt derved – ding dang! ding dang! –"
Up to the tower of St. Alban's Church, where the Bell hung, there once ascended a monk, young and handsome, but deeply thoughtful. He gazed through the loophole out over the Odense River. In those days its bed was broad, and the marsh was a lake. He looked across it, and over the green rampart called "The Nun's Hill," to the cloister beyond, where a light shone from a nun's cell. He had known her well, and he recalled that, and his heart beat rapidly at the thought.


Ja, sådan fortæller klokken.
"Ding-dong! Ding-dong!" Yes, such are the stories the Bell tells.


"Der kom i tårnet bispens fjollede svend, og når jeg, klokken, der er støbt af malm, hård og tung, svingede og svang, kunne jeg have knust hans pande; han satte sig tæt under mig og legede med to pinde, ret som om de var et strengespil, og han sang dertil: 'Nu tør jeg synge højt, hvad jeg ellers ikke tør hviske, synge om alt, hvad der gemmes bag lås og lem! der er koldt og vådt! Rotterne æder dem levende op! Ingen ved derom, ingen hører derom! heller ikke nu, thi klokken ringer så højt ding dang! ding dang!'
"One day the Bishop's silly manservant came up to the tower; and when I, the Bell, cast as I am from hard and heavy metal, swung to and fro and rang I almost crushed his head, for he sat down right under me and played with two sticks, exactly as if they formed a musical instrument. He sang to them, 'Here I may dare to sing aloud what elsewhere I dare not whisper-sing of all that is hidden behind locks and bolts. It is cold and damp there. The rats eat people up alive! No one knows of this; no one hears of it; even now, for the Bell is ringing so loudly, Ding-dong! Ding-dong!'


"Der var en konge, de kaldte ham Knud, han nejede både for bisp og munk, men da han kom vendelboerne alt for nær med svære skatter og hårde ord, tog de våben og stænger, jog ham af sted, som var han et vildt; han tyede ind i kirken, låste port og dør; den voldsomme skare lå udenfor, jeg hørte derom: Både skader og krager, alliken med, blev skræmt ved skrig og skrål; de fløj ind i tårnet og ud igen, de så på mængden dernede, de så også ind ad kirkens vinduer, og skreg højt, hvad de så. Kong Knud lå foran alteret og bad, hans brødre Erik og Benedikt stod som vagt med dragne sværd, men kongens tjener, den falske Blake, forrådte sin herre; de vidste derude, hvor han var at ramme, og én smed en sten gennem ruden, og kongen lå død! – der var skrig og råb af den vilde hob og af fuglenes flok, og jeg råbte med, jeg sang, og jeg klang: ding dang! ding dang!"
"Then there was a king called Knud. He bowed low before bishops and monks, but when he unjustly oppressed the people of Vendelbo with heavy taxes and hard words, they armed themselves with weapons and drove him away as if he had been a wild beast. He sought refuge in this church and bolted fast the gate and doors. I have heard tell how the furious mob surrounded the sacred building, until the crows and ravens, and even the jackdaws, became alarmed by the tumult. They flew up in and out of the tower and peered down on the multitude below; they gazed in at the church windows and shrieked out what they saw.


"Kirkeklokken hænger højt, ser vidt omkring, får besøg af fuglene og forstår deres sprog, til den suser vinden ind af luger og lydhuller, af hver revne, og vinden ved alt, den har det fra luften, og den omslutter alt, hvad levende er, den trænger ind i menneskets lunger, ved alt, hvad der får lyd, hvert ord og hvert suk –! Luften ved det, vinden fortæller det, kirkeklokken forstår dens mæle og ringer det ud for den hele verden, ding dang! ding dang!"
"King Knud knelt and prayed before the altar while his brothers, Erik and Benedict, stood guarding him with drawn swords. But the King's servant, the false Blake, betrayed his master, and when those outside knew where he could be hit, one of them hurled a stone in through the windows, and the King lay dead! Then there were shouts and screams from the angry mob, and cries, too, from the flocks of terrified birds, and I joined them all. I rang and sang, 'Ding-dong! Ding-dong!'


"Men det blev mig for meget at høre og vide, jeg mægtede ikke at ringe det ud! jeg blev så træt, jeg blev så tung, at bjælken knækkede og jeg fløj ud i den skinnende luft, ned der hvor åen er dybest, hvor åmanden bor, ensom og ene og der fortæller jeg, år ud og år ind, hvad jeg har hørt og hvad jeg ved: ding dang! ding dang!"
"The Church Bell hangs high and can see far around; it is visited by the birds and understands their language. The Wind whispers to it through the wickets and loopholes and every little crack, and the Wind knows all things. He hears it from the Air, for the Air surrounds all living creatures, even enters the lungs of humans, and hears every word and sigh. Yes, the Air knows all, the Wind tells all, and the Church Bell understands all and peals it forth to the whole world, 'Ding-dong! Ding-dong!'


Således lyder det fra Klokkedybet i Odense Å, det har mormor fortalt.
"But all this became too much for me to hear and know; I was no longer able to ring it all out. I became so tired and so heavy that at last the beam from which I hung broke, and so I flew through the glowing air down to the deepest spot of the river, where the Merman lives in solitude and loneliness. And year in and year out, I tell him all I have seen and all I have heard. Ding-dong! Ding-dong!"


Men vor skolemester siger: "Der er ingen klokke, der kan ringe dernede, for den kan ikke! – og der er ingen åmand dernede, for der er ingen åmand!" og når alle kirkeklokker klinger så lysteligt, så siger han, at det ikke er klokkerne, men at det egentligt er luften, der klinger, luften er det, der giver lyd – det sagde også mormor, at klokken havde sagt – deri er de enige og så er det vist! "Vær agtsom, vær agtsom, vogt nøje dig selv!" siger de begge to.
Thus it sounds from the Bell Deep in the Odense River-at least, so my grandmother has told me.


Luften ved alt! den er om os, den er i os, den mæler om vor tanke og vor gerning, og den mæler det længere end klokken nede i dybet i Odense Å, hvor åmanden bor, den mæler det ud i det store himmeldyb, så langt, så langt, evigt og altid, til Himmeriges klokker klinger: "ding dang! ding dang!"
But our schoolmaster says there's no bell ringing down there, for there couldn't be; and there's no Merman down there, for there aren't any Mermen. And when all the church bells are ringing loudly, he says it's not the bells, but that it is really the air that makes the sound! And my grandmother told me that the Bell said the same thing; so, since they both agree on it, it must be true. The air knows everything. It is around us and in us; it tells of our thoughts and our actions, and it voices them longer and farther than the Bell down in the Odense River hollow where the Merman lives; it voices them into the great vault of heaven itself, so far, far away, forever and ever, until the bells of heaven ring out, "Ding-dong! Ding-dong!"





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