不敗的遊龍——老兵作家張拓蕪

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1981 / 1月

文‧王春謀 圖‧光裕


龍,令人仰慕的不僅是叱吒風雲的氣勢,而是雖困不敗、屈又能伸的潛力。張拓蕪,生於戊辰年,肖龍。半生的戎馬生涯,並沒有給他帶來榮耀,但在他退役又罹患中風之後,唯一能動彈的右手所寫下的「代馬輸卒手記」,卻使他在文壇上享譽一時。他從癱瘓中重新站了起來,應是龍血在他脈管中奔騰使然吧!


不堪回首話故鄉

民國十七年六月,張拓蕪生於安徽省涇縣后山鄉四甲祖宅。涇縣是一個群山環抱的小縣城,由於山區交通不便,據張拓蕪說,活了八十歲沒見過火車、汽車和輪船的縣民,大有人在。

雖然是這樣閉塞,但生於斯、長於斯的縣民,卻往往並不想向外發展。日常生活所需,除了鹽之外,都可以自給自足。對於家鄉的富足,張拓蕪無限懷念,他說:「我家的廚房門一開,便可以看見河水在腳邊流。想吃葷,拿著網出去,立可網幾條大魚回來,油鍋都還沒燒熱呢!山上儘是合抱的杉樹,有用不完的木材……。」

涇縣在張拓蕪眼中,是一個值得驕傲的地方。皖南有文房四寶:歙硯、徽墨、宣筆、宣紙。提到宣紙,張拓蕪特別澄清說:「宣城賣的紙其實產自涇縣,可惜涇名不彰,反被宣城掠美去了。涇縣山泉的水質好,造的紙當然出色。」

在十歲以前,張拓蕪的童年過得非常愉快。家有水田十八畝、旱地十二畝,即使鬧荒歉,也總有碗飯吃。父親隨祖父在宣城經商,張拓蕪留在家鄉和慈母相依。夜裡在油燈下,他朗朗的讀書聲,與慈母咿呀的紡車聲相和。厭了就玩,倦了就睡,再溫馨也沒有了。他在縣立后山中心小學讀了四年,另外讀了兩年私塾。他說:「以後能寫封家書,打個報告,全靠這些根基。」

慈母見背,從此飄泊坎坷

後來,慈母見背,家道也中落了,張拓蕪不容於後母,到宣城孫家埠的油坊當學徒。他回想當年說:「油坊的老闆和我家還有點親戚關係,可是我的學徒生活並不好過。跑腿、洗夜壺、搓紙煙、刷水煙筒,都要我們這些小學徒幹,一不好,沒頭沒臉挨頓毒打是常事。家回不得,只好咬緊牙根苦捱。也許我能適應日後的苦日子,多少靠這段時期的磨鍊吧!」

民國卅二年,日本軍閥的魔掌伸向皖南,宣城烽火四起、啼痕處處。油坊裡的丁朝奉是抗日游擊隊的分隊長,慫恿張拓蕪加入行列,說:「你會讀會寫,在軍隊裡會很有出息。」就這樣張拓蕪踏出當兵的第一步。他說:「我當兵並不抱什麼宏志大願,只是一不願當順民,二是受不了油坊裡的苦日子。」

十五歲的小毛頭在游擊隊裡,衝鋒陷陣是談不上的。張拓蕪仗著年紀小,機靈識字,充當刺探敵情的尖兵。他常出沒在附近淪陷的縣城傳送消息,日軍的殘暴在在使他觸目傷心。眼看原來是魚米富庶的家園,在日軍鐵蹄蹂躪下,哀鴻遍野。

同年的十月,張拓蕪正式投效國軍,其時已是抗戰的尾聲。戰後軍民喘息未定,國家又面臨另一場民族存亡的苦戰。中共在蘇俄的哺育下,從土八路搖身一變,開始張牙舞爪。張拓蕪像一片飛絮,從此披著戰衣,在破碎的山河上流轉。

難忘的「代馬」生涯

民國卅四年,張拓蕪在軍中任「代馬輸卒」。代馬輸卒是國軍克難新兵種,當時國軍接收日製的四.七曲射砲,砲身笨重,軍中騾馬又死亡殆盡,張拓蕪和一些年輕力壯的夥伴,這時派上用場了。他們在轉戰南北時,以人力代替騾馬輸送曲射砲。苦歸苦,但可以免除衛兵勤務,通宵大睡,頗令其他班兵眼紅。張拓蕪說:「其他班兵不大服氣,特別編了一首歌謠來嘲弄我們:『不站衛兵不放哨,不挑彈藥祇拉砲;別的什麼都很好,就是祇能啃青草。』」

張拓蕪的代馬生涯,一直到了蘇北南通、如皋、興化、揚州一帶才輕鬆。在大野平原剿共,代馬輸卒可樂了。張拓蕪說:「因為一來好拉好扳,砲輪子不會常被卡住;二來我們從經驗中琢磨出很多技巧,砲位一放好,我們就可歪在陣地裡抽煙聊天了。」這段張拓蕪津津樂道的日子,到了已收復的鹽城便結束了。他在鹽城擔任城防任務,兩腿再也不必代替騾馬腿了。

鹽城是蘇北近海的要衝,劫後的慘象令張拓蕪感慨萬千,他日後寫道:「蘇北地區本是魚米之鄉,但烽火連年,征戰頻仍。從軍閥肆虐到盜匪橫行,從日寇盤踞到匪共竄擾,差不多半個世紀,蘇北平原一直遭受無情的連綿不斷的蹂躪。縱然野草能變成嘉禾,也塞不飽蘇北人民的肚子。這一片原本肥沃的平原,如今連芟草也懶得生長了。祇有紅蘿蔔是一根根頑強的生命,那綠色的匍伏在地面上的紅蘿蔔葉與高瘦直挺、搖曳在野風中白頭髮的蘆葦,是代表蘇北的倔強旺盛的生命力。」其實倔強旺盛的生命力,在張拓蕪這條皖南的遊龍身上也有,感覺大局不好,事不可為,他開始躍躍欲動了。

終於依附在復興基地之上

民國卅六年二月,張拓蕪從原來的隊伍開小差,千方百計混進調防臺灣的軍隊中開拔來臺。

卻不知道防軍並沒有久駐,在十一月又調回蘇北剿共,張拓蕪在民國卅七年二月,又再度開小差重回台灣。從此失根的遊絮,歷經離亂,終於依託在這復興基地上了。

二十幾歲的張拓蕪,在台灣未改遊龍不羈的天性,從南到北不知換了多少個工作崗位,他當過文書士、警士,甚至康樂隊的演員也軋過一腳。他凡事漫不經心,但卻也有自強不息的一面。

民國卅九年左右,張拓蕪的少年情懷發作了,他愛上了現代詩。在星月光下,夥伴的鼾聲如雷,站衛兵的張拓蕪掏出口袋的書本狼吞虎嚥。多少個不眠的夜晚,徐訏的「四十詩綜」、鄧禹平的「藍色小夜曲」、金軍的「歌比方」、李莎的「帶怒的歌」、余光中的「航的悲歌」、楚卿的「生之謳歌」,一首首輸入他的記憶庫中。他說:「這幾個我當年最崇拜的詩人的作品,我曾背得滾瓜爛熟。」

少年情懷總是詩

珠玉在腹,張拓蕪也技癢了,他開始向「新生報」的「戰士園地」投詩稿,雖然投出去的十九落空,但偶有幾篇白紙黑字地刊出來了,不祇他樂,班上的弟兄也與有榮焉。當年的十五元的稿酬比他的月餉還多出三元,除了買書之外,他總要請弟兄吃喝一番。

提到這段日子,張拓蕪對當時的班長錢雲霓無限感懷,他說:「我當時之所以那樣興致高昂,全拜錢班長所賜。我不成熟的作品遭受退稿是常事,弟兄們難免要取笑我:『怎麼,大作家又被退稿了?算了吧,別寫了!』這時班長會站出來叱喝他們:『能求上進總是好的,他好好磨下去,會寫出點名堂來的。』班長新詩沒念過幾首,上街時總想買詩集送給我,他就挑書內一行行字比較短的買,我手上有好多詩集,就是班長為我用『慧眼』買來的。我生性放蕩不羈,但不曾墮落下去,班長的帶領大有關係。目前我正著手寫一篇錢班長的行誼,準備發表在『皇冠雜誌』上。」

談到自己當年對知識的饑渴,張拓蕪說:「我將來有錢一定要捐筆錢給『東方出版社』。在臺北當小兵時的薪餉,買了日用品就剩不下幾文錢了。我往往在上街時帶著饅頭,在『東方出版社』看書,一看就是一整天。剛開始時店員看到我這看白書的人又來了,態度總不大好,但日子久了,從他們的眼神中還可看到一絲敬意呢!」

文壇上漸有聲名

學不倦、寫不厭使張拓蕪在詩壇上聲名漸起,至少在軍中提到詩人沈甸,大家都知道是張拓蕪。民國四十五年,他參加國防部文康競賽,獲士兵組詩歌類第二名;民國五十三年,獲國軍第一屆文藝金象獎第二名。詩作除了在國內的報刊雜誌上發表外,連香港的「當代文藝」,馬來西亞的「蕉風」上,都曾刊出過。

問張拓蕪後來為何放棄寫詩了?張拓蕪說:「詩是文學的貴族,有了詩材,不馬上寫出來會彆得難過;詩成,別人看不懂,大可自己孤芳自賞。我不再寫詩,一方面是哀樂中年使我失去少時情懷,另一面後進詩人輩出,我看看自己寫不過他們,只好另闢途徑了。」

但愛詩的張拓蕪真割捨得下嗎?不,他的書架上有整套的「全唐詩」、「全宋詩」,還有一些前人詩話。他說:「古典詩、詞、曲,我正在摸索中,偶而也不怕見笑古人,厚著臉皮信手拈來。只是遣興的意念多,創作的慾望少罷了。也沒想到拿去發表!」

病魔擊不倒的遊龍

民國六十二年,張拓蕪由軍中退下來,這時他已身為人夫、人父。飄泊半生,原以為從此便可安定過日子,卻想不到六十四年一場中風,害得他左半身不遂。當他拄著柺杖再站起來,所有的積蓄耗費一空,時有斷炊之苦;再加上妻啼子哭,他變得非常暴燥。可是遊龍畢竟是遊龍,經過二年的動心忍性,他的生命迸出耀眼的火花了。

在朋友的鼓舞下,他那唯一能動的右手寫下了一篇篇的「代馬輸卒手記」。當「代馬輸卒手記」在「中華文藝」連載時,讀者為這一段段的英雄悲歌震撼了,紛紛懷著急切心情一期期看下去。

談起當時病倒後的心境,張拓蕪說:「雖然我左半邊身子行動不方便,但我還有一個清晰的頭腦和一隻完好的右手;我能寫字、能說話、神智清明,這不都是上天的寬大嗎?當年我癱在病榻上,多少悲歡歲月,塵封往事,一時都上了心頭。許多忘了名字的死去夥伴,一個個都記起來了。兩年間,從榮民總醫院第九病房到臺北街頭,再到竹東榮民醫院,『代馬輸卒手記』的素材就這樣醞釀出來;可惜病後手腳不靈,一天最多只能寫成一千字。」

過去張拓蕪曾在馬祖電臺擔任過編撰官,每天負責三個節目。張拓蕪說:「那時我負責撰寫心戰廣播稿,三個節目,一天要寫五六千字才能應付,揮筆直書,雖是一味搶快,卻為日後寫作奠下基礎。現在寫起字來,因為殘障,力不從心,但寫不快也有好處,文詞反倒精煉點。」

難忘來自各界的溫情

張拓蕪從扶柺杖而行,到目前能空手蹣跚慢步,雖說是自己奮鬥不屈意志的表現,但他說,他最難忘社會給他的種種溫情。

他說:「在我為醫病到達山窮水盡的地步,朋友們看我即將瀕臨斷炊,為我發動募捐。另外好友趙一夫為我找些照片登在『軍民一家』月刊上,算是我的投稿,稿費都給了我。以後頭腦清晰些,說話也清楚些,我原先服務的單位要我寫點廣播稿——那當然也是一種濟助。其他還有許多讀者在聽說我的事後,陸陸續續直接或間接捐錢給我,這讓我多年來只要一想到,就會感到無限的溫暖。」

對於後來他能煮字療飢,真正靠寫作維生,他很感激朋友們的鼓勵,他說:「有天在台北國軍文藝中心和詩人羊令野、作家鄧文來以及業餘金石家黃俊濤三個朋友閒聊,他們鼓勵我寫點散文,多少也可補貼家用。我說恐怕寫了也沒人要,文來兄說:『只要你寫,其他我來負責。』那時文來兄是『中華文藝』的總編輯,老友夏楚兄任主編,故我即使寫得不夠好,他們也肯幫我修改、潤飾一番刊出了。起初根本沒想到要連載下去,只是寫一篇算一篇,寫了五、六篇之後,聽到讀友中有疏落的掌聲。人是需要鼓勵鞭策的,我就在大家的鼓勵打氣之下,寫了十來萬字。我想這些喝采之聲多半發自惻隱之心吧。」

所謂「貧賤夫妻百事哀」,在苦日子中吵鬧的太太、孩子,是張拓蕪的大負擔,往往使他無法安心寫作。後來太太去工廠做工,孩子也送去華興小學。他說:「蔣夫人創辦的華興小學本來只收容國軍烈屬的子弟。但我實在想不出更好的辦法,就不揣冒昧寫信要求學校當局破格收容。學校回信說要過幾個月才能考慮。但後來學校總務組長張磊平,在一位英文老師的力薦下為圖書館買進『代馬輸卒手記』。張組長一看作者名字很熟,想起就是那個懇求讓孩子入校的人,就連夜趕來看我。他看我確實需要幫助,回去在學校會議上力爭。我的孩子就在他的熱心協助下進入華興小學。我亦得以全無後顧之憂,專心寫作。」

有何過人之處?唯「真誠」而已

對於「代馬輸卒手記」的轟動,張拓蕪自稱:「我是個粗魯無文的人,不過我崇尚真實。這本書唯一的可取之處也許就在『真』字!我的平生不足述,傳記應是大人物的事;但我們這一代失學和失去家庭溫暖的悲楚,槍林彈雨中的奮鬥以及求生存的掙扎,我曾身經目睹,姑且算作個歷史的見證吧。」

著名小說家司馬中原對「代馬輸卒手記」評道:「這一系列的散文,重現了作者當年的生活情境,也顯示出時代的真實面貌,他的文字毫無矯飾,銳筆縱橫,盡情奔放,不但細緻描摹了生活的表態,更深深刻示出生命的神髓;從他童年記憶的開端,寫鄉土、寫民俗、寫離家、寫戰鬥生活,無不歷歷如繪,性情直托,具見肺肝。這種源諸至情,發諸人性的文章,使我非常驚奇震撼,我敢說,這是五四以來散文創作的大手筆,更是大兵文學的經典之作。」

名詩人羊令野則以為:「讀歷史,當讀司馬遷的『史記』,那是經由一顆詩心孕育而出的,故司馬遷亦詩人也。讀『自傳』,當讀『代馬輸卒手記』,那也是詩人沈甸(張拓蕪)另一枝彩筆的裸裎。可是寫歷史的人並不是創造歷史的人,而寫自傳的人,往往矯揉做作,恆少真摯。因此拓蕪的手記,最為珍貴的,乃是一個真實的我之自白;這是文學的『真』,也是詩人的『真』。這種坦蕩蕩的風貌,古人稱之為君子,而我則以為是人類愛與藝術愛的全然表現,從心靈到人間以至宇宙,無不沛然充盈。」

律己甚嚴,勤於筆耕

張拓蕪從事筆耕多年,終於存了錢在中和鄉南勢角買下一層小公寓,已住進二個多月。由於左半身行動不便,只能把椅子斜著擺,側著寫稿,稿紙上面得用兩塊紙鎮壓著才不會滑動。縱使是這般辛苦,他每天仍要求自己一定寫出二千字。碰到寫作低潮,他就在晚上罰自己在書桌前坐上兩、三個鐘頭,直到腦中思索、醞釀出東西來才停止。

平常他很少外出,最多只在附近散散步,或者找些武俠小說看,他說他最喜歡金庸的作品。提起以武俠小說調劑生活,他笑著說:「和我一樣殘障的名作家杏林子(劉俠)常勸我:『張拓蕪呀,不要盡看這些喪志的東西,看電影還比較好些。』我就說:『看電影我也只看武俠片啊!』」

縱然生命中多苦難,張拓蕪依舊笑口常開,抽煙一根接一根,至於酒,他因為中風過,是不再敢喝了。日常生活之中,寫稿、買菜、洗衣、做飯,全靠唯一可用的右手包辦。他指著客廳壁上胡昌熾寫的對聯,說:「我的平生就落在『磨鍊』、『苦寒』這四個字上。」對聯的字倔強、剛勁、靈動兼而有之,寫的是:「寶劍鋒由磨鍊出,梅花香自苦寒來。」然而張拓蕪的臉上,看不到多少風霜的刻痕,幾乎垂肩的耳朵,襯托的是生機盎然的「龍顏」。他說他那雙耳朵,好在不是生在古代,不然犯了忌,恐怕會砍頭呢!

臨走時張拓蕪在陽台上揮動右手道別,讓人不由覺得從「潛龍勿用」,到「見龍在田」,到「飛龍在天」,張拓蕪就是張拓蕪!

〔圖片說明〕

P.51

因罹患中風,張拓蕪左邊半身不遂,幸好右手還能運用自如。單手寫字是件苦事,但張拓蕪卻樂於振筆直書。每回提筆寫作時,他都是一臉虔敬肅穆,將文章事業看得無比神聖。

P.52、P.53

圖1:無限的鄉愁與對袍澤的懷念,在張拓蕪的筆下交織成一系列感人的作品。從這些老兵的自白中,可以知道戰亂、殘障,都沒有把他擊倒。圖2:張拓蕪以右手搖筆桿,也以這隻手洗衣、煮飯,生活上完全自理,不必麻煩別人。

P.54

胡昌熾不輕易寫字送人,但卻為張拓蕪大揮椽筆,這些字正是張拓蕪一生的寫照。

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EN

The Author with a Soldier's Spirit


Of all the dragon's legendary qualities, the one the Chinese admire the most is its ability to fight back no matter how great the odds. It is therefore appropriate that Chang To-wu, a widely respected author who spent half his life in the army, should be born in the year of the dragon. Although he is now paralysed by a stroke, the blood of the dragon still courses through his veins and enables him to triumph over all adversity.

Early life: Born in 1928 in Chin County in Anhwei province on the China mainland, Chang spent a happy childhood. After receiving six years of elementary education, he became an apprentice at an oil processing plant in a nearby town. After his mother died, and his home fell on hard times, he was forced to suspend his studies. He recalls: "The years of apprenticeship were an ordeal for me. I was frequently punished by my masters for not carrying properly out such menial tasks as running errands or cleaning toilets. These experiences, however, helped me to withstand the tribulations I had to face later in life."

Outbreak of war: When the Japanese warlords started to overrun Anhwei province in 1943, Chang was persuaded by one of his colleagues at the oil plant to join the resistance movement. He states frankly: "I decided to take part not out of patriotism or ambition. I simply couldn't stand any longer the persecution of the Japanese and of my employers at the mill."

As he was only 15 years old, he was assigned by the guerilla chief to act as a point man to gather information from the enemy. While traveling on foot from town to town, he saw at first hand the devastation of war, and realized the grave responsibility everyone has for his nation. Just before the end of the Sino-Japanese war, Chang signed up in the Chinese armed forces, and joined the battle against the Communists. In 1945, Chang was responsible for the transportation of guns to the battlefront. He recalls: "It was much easier to do the job on the plains of northern Kiangsu province. After the guns were placed in position, I could relax at the camp, chatting and smoking."

His experiences during this period were to become a source of inspiration for his writing. He describes in one of his articles how "after the rampage of the Japanese warlords and the Chinese Communists, the former land of plenty in northern Kiangsu became a desert. The only sign of life on the plains were some sturdy vegetables and grasses which could survive the onslaught." The vigor and vitality of these plants soon became evident in Chang's character.

In February 1947, Chang moved to Taiwan with the army. "The support of peace talks between the Nationalists and Communists by U.S. General Marshall, coupled with the castigation of intellectuals by the Communists, caused many students to abandon their books, lowered the people's morale and led to tension and vendettas on the mainland." When the entire land across the Taiwan Straits was engulfed in flames, Chang decided to cross over to the island.

Poet laureate: During his first years in Taiwan, Chang, then in his 20s, led a casual and romantic way of life. He tried his hand at various jobs, including an office clerk with the signals corps in Kaohsiung, policeman in Taichung and army sergeant in Tainan, and even took part in troop entertainment groups. It was not until 1950 that he found an outlet for his pent-up emotions in poetry. He read all the works written by leading poets in Taiwan while he was standing on sentry duty. "I can still recite many of them," he says proudly.

When he tried to write himself, however, most of his efforts were rejected by newspaper and magazine editors. But even the publication of a small number of his works was enough to fire his enthusiasm.

He reminisces: "I am indebted to squad leader Chien for his support of my endeavors. When my colleagues laughed at my repeated rejections, he chided them and bought several poetry anthologies for me as an encouragement. In view of his meager resources, I decided to write a piece praising his sacrifice on my behalf, as a means of reciprocating his friendship."

To meet his desire for knowledge, Chang, at that time a poverty-stricken corporal, would go to the Orient Bookstore to browse. "I could see how the attitude of the store clerks change from hostility to respect. I owe much of my success to the consideration shown me at the bookstore."

Through his persistent efforts, Chang gradually established his reputation, and was made a "poet laureate" after winning many literary awards. Even journals in Hong Kong and Malaysia carried his best works. He decided to turn to prose when he discovered that the realities of everyday life had blunted his youthful romanticism.

Disaster strikes: Just as he was about to settle down to a quiet life with his family on his retirement from the army, Chang suffered a stroke. The left-hand side of his body was paralyzed, but the dragon within him was unconquerable. With the encouragement of his friends, he wrote articles one after the other on his experiences while he was transporting guns and ammunition to the front.

These stories were a sensational success among readers who appreciated their heroism. Bed-ridden as a result of his affliction, Chang felt a deep nostalgia for his former colleagues in the army. He said humbly: "The success of these stories must be due to their authenticity. I just wanted to put on record the events in the war when my comrades were engaged in a life-and-death struggle amid the roar of the battlefield."

Criticism: Famous novelist Shihma Chung-yuan comments: "Chang mirrors faithfully the epoch he lived through. He describes both the appearance and reality of life in his stories. Based on his childhood memories, he describes folk customs of his home area. The spontaneous outflow of human compassion makes Chang's works one of the major contributions to military literature. It is the most valuable prose collection since the time of the May 4 movement." Leading poet Yang Ling-yeh recommends Chang's works as a model for writers of autobiography, because they are his candid confessions.

Gratitude for friendship: In spite of his fame, Chang never forgets the assistance he has received from people in all sectors of the community, particularly when he felt close to desperation. He recalls how once, when he was penniless after paying for his medical treatment, some known and anonymous friends organized a collection to help him tide over his difficulties.

Transcendence: Though half paralyzed, Chang forces himself to write at least 2,000 words a day. Pointing at a couplet pasted on the walls of his studio he says: "I will continue to wield my pen no matter how much hardship and discipline it will require."

[Picture Caption]

Though the left-hand side of his body is paralyzed, Chang said: "I will continue to wield may pen no matter how much hardship and discipline it will require."

1. The series of books published by Chang on his experiences while he was transporting guns and ammunition to the front. 2. Though suffering from the effects of a stroke, Chang can cook and do other chores besides writing, using one hand.

The couplet pasted on the walls of his studio reads: "A precious sword is sharper after grinding, and a plum flower is fragrant only in the cold of winter."

 

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