ENGLISH

The rags

DANSK

Laserne


Outside the paper mill, masses of rags lay piled in high stacks; they had been gathered from far and wide. Every rag had a tale to tell, and told it, too; but we can't listen to all of them. Some of the rags were native; others came from foreign countries.
Uden for fabrikken stod i stakke højt opstablede kludebunker, samlet vidt og bredt fra; hver las havde sin historie, hver førte sin tale, men man kan ikke høre dem alle sammen. Nogle laser var indenlandske, andre var fra fremmede lande. Her lå nu en dansk las op til en norsk las; pæredansk var den ene, og ravnorsk var den anden, og det var det morsomme ved de to, vil hver fornuftig norsk og dansk sige.


Now here lay a Danish rag beside a rag from Norway; one was decidedly Danish, the other decidedly Norse, and that was the amusing part about the two, as any good Dane or Norwegian could tell you. They could understand each other well enough, though the two languages were as different, according to the Norwegian, as French and Hebrew. "We go to the hills for our language, and there get it pure and firsthand, while the Dane cooks up some sort of a suckling-sweet lingo!"
De kendte nu hinanden på sproget, uagtet hvert af disse, sagde den norske, var så forskelligt, som fransk og hebraisk. "Vi går til ås for at få det råt og oprindeligt og dansken laver sig sin suttesøde fade bragesnak."


So the rags talked - and a rag is a rag in every land the world over; they are considered of no value except in the rag heap.
Laserne talte og las er las i ethvert land, de gælder kun noget i kludebunken.


"I am Norse!" said the Norwegian. "And when I've said I'm Norse I guess I've said enough. I'm firm of fiber, like the ancient granite rocks of old Norway. The land up there has a constitution, like the free United States. It makes my fibers tingle to think what I am and to sound out my thoughts in words of granite!"
"Jeg er norsk!" sagde den norske, "og når jeg siger, at jeg er norsk, så tror jeg at have sagt nok! jeg er fast i trævlerne, som urfjeldene i gamle Norge, landet, der har en konstitution, som det frie Amerika! det kildrer mig i trævlerne at tænke hvad jeg er og lade tanken malmklinge i granit-ord!"


"But we have literature," said the Danish rag. "Do you understand what that is?"
"Men vi har en litteratur!" sagde den danske las. "Forstår De hvad det er?"


"Understand?" repeated the Norwegian. "Lowland creature! Shall I give him a shove uphill and show him a northern light, rag that he is? When the sun of Norway has thawed the ice, then Danish fruit barges come up to us with butter and cheese - an eatable cargo, I grant you - but by way of ballast they bring Danish literature, too! We don't need the stuff. You don't need stale beer where fresh springs spout, and up there is a natural well that has never been tapped or been made known to Europeans by the cackling of newspapers, jobbers, and traveling authors in foreign countries. I speak freely from the bottom of my lungs, and the Dane must get used to a free voice. And so he will someday, when as a fellow Scandinavian he wants to cling to our proud mountain country, the summit of the world!"
"Forstår!" gentog den norske, "fladelands beboer, skal jeg løfte ham tilfjelds og nordlyse ham, klud som han er! Når isen tør for den norske sol, da kommer danske pæreskuder op til os med smør og ost, ret ædelige varer! og der følger til ballast dansk litteratur. Vi behøver den ikke! man undværer helst dovent øl, der hvor det friske væld sprudler, og her er det en brønd, der ikke er boret, ikke skvaldret europæisk kendt ved aviser, kammeratskab og forfatteres rejser i udlandet. Frit taler jeg fra lungen, og dansken må vænne sig til den frie lyd, og det vil han i sin skandinaviske klamren til vort stolte klippeland, verdens urknold!"


"Now a Danish rag could never talk like that - never!" said the Dane. "It's not in our nature. I know myself, and all the other rags are like me. We're too good-natured, too unassuming; we think too little of ourselves. Not that we gain much by our modesty, but I like it; I think it's quite charming. Incidentally, I'm perfectly aware of my own good values, I assure you, but I don't talk about them; nobody can ever accuse me of that. I'm soft and easy going; bear everything patiently, envy nobody, and speak good of everybody - though there isn't much good to be said of most other people, but that's their business. I can afford to smile at them; I know I'm so gifted."
"Således kunne nu aldrig en dansk las tale!" sagde den danske. "Det er ikke vor natur. Jeg kender mig selv, og som jeg er alle vore laser, vi er så godmodige, så beskedne, vi tror for lidet om os selv, og det vinder man rigtignok ikke noget ved, men jeg kan så godt lide det, jeg finder det så yndigt! Forresten, det kan jeg forsikre dem, kender jeg tilfulde min egen gode bonitet, men jeg taler ikke om den, sådan fejl skal ingen kunne beskylde mig for. Jeg er blød og bøjelig, tåler alt, misunder ingen, taler godt om alle, uagtet der er ikke meget godt at sige om de fleste andre, men lad dem om det! jeg gør nu altid grin af det, for jeg er så begavet!"


"Don't speak to me in that lowland, pasteboard language - it makes me sick!" said the Norwegian, as he caught a puff of wind and fluttered away from his own heap to another.
"Tal mig ikke dette fladelandets bløde klistersprog, jeg vamles ved det!" sagde den norske og løste sig i vinden fra bunken og kom over i en anden.


They both became paper; and, as it turned out, the Norwegian rag became a sheet on which a Norwegian wrote a love letter to a Danish girl, while the Danish rag became the manuscript for a Danish poem praising Norway's beauty and strength.
Papir blev de begge to, og tilfældet ville, at den norske las blev et papir, hvorpå en nordmand skrev et trofast elskovsbrev til en dansk pige, og den danske las blev manuskript for en dansk ode til pris for Norges kraft og herlighed.


So something good may come even of rags when they have once come out of the rag heap and the change has been made into truth and beauty; they keep up understanding relations between us, and in that there is a blessing.
Der kan også komme noget godt ud af laserne, når de først er af kludebunken og forvandlingen er sket til sandhed og skønhed, de lyser i god forståelse og i den er velsignelse.


That is the story. It's rather amusing and offends no one - but the rags.
Det er historien, den er ganske fornøjelig og fornærmer aldeles ingen uden – laserne.





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