对一条河流的命名

盘龙江是流经昆明的一条河流,长不到一百公里,在昆明建城之前就已存在。它沿岸的地景一直在变化,曾经的农田变为郊区,曾经的郊区变为城市。我以为,唯一未变的只有江水本身。
然则这样的叙述经不起推敲,因为江水本身自然也在变。撇开其流淌的属性不谈,在古时地图上那些纵横交杂的支流,如今多已不存。而再追溯到足够久的年代,河流也是不存在的,所谓沧海桑田,“陈火化为灰烬,灰烬化为泥土”。
河流在时间和空间的变换中展示着自身,其生命存在于时空的纠缠中。而我所能感知的是它在我生命时间中的投影,一种变质的切片。当我尝试以收集者式的客观去接近,得到的却只是最个人化的碎片。那些似是而非的标本在时空中解体而又重新交织,幻化为另一条同样复杂的河流,一条由我所命名的河流。

The naming of a river

The Panlong River is less than 100 km in length, and is the cradle of Kunming’s civilization. In human timescale, the landscape along the river has been ever changing: forests to farmlands, farmlands to suburbs, and suburbs to cities. It sounds to me like the only thing that remains unchanged is the river itself.
However, in geological timescale, even the river evolves naturally. On top of the water environment, the maze-like river branches we saw from the ancient map is not there anymore, except for very few ones. And if we trace further back in geological times, even the river might had not existed. I feel this is like what has said by T. S. Eliot: “Old fires to ashes, and ashes to the earth.”
The river presents itself so differently at various times and spaces, and thrives on every one of them. Therefore what I can feel about the river is only its projection within my lifetime and my living quarters, and apparently a metamorphic slice. I tried to be objective towards naming of it, but all I obtained is still the most personal treasures. These pieces of my treasure are the specimens about the river in various time/space dimensions. They interweave and consolidate into another equally complex river -- a river named by me.

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