第七章 土地与革命
CHAPTER VII

LAND AND REVOLUTION
第三十节 石壁村
30. Stone Wall Village
  在欧洲,一个拥有训练有素的干部队伍并掌握了武装的政党,在国内搞自上而下的政变来推翻政府,如捷克斯洛伐克所发生的那样,会是很干净利落的。而像中国那样,一个村一个村地自下而上搞革命,拖泥带水,十分费劲,则非有巨大的耐心,无尽的智谋和坚定的信心不可。如果掉以轻心,乱来一气,就会弄得不可收拾。我想最好还是通过一个村子的群众如何与地主进行斗争的具体事例,来说明进行这种形式的革命的艰巨性,从中也可窥见共产党斗争策略的一斑。这个故事的情节使人联想起古希腊的悲剧。在山西南部有个名叫石壁的小村庄,大约有五百人口,村子座落在使人常发怀古幽思的太岳山的峰峦中。这一带尽是荒山秃岭怪石嶙峋,土地十分贫瘠。贫穷困苦的农民在山坡上开垦了层层梯田,直达山巅。世世代代以来,这里的农民不仅与恶劣的自然条件进行着斗争,而且还要与如同耶稣诞生时代那样古远的残酷剥削和落后迷信作斗争。当地群众虽然不信上帝,但却信奉形形色色的神灵鬼怪,诸如使他们受苦受穷的命运之神,以及作祟干山岩林莽之间、依附于飞禽走兽之身的牛鬼蛇神之类。那些在乡间跳神弄鬼的巫婆法师之流趁机利用妖术愚弄吓唬穷苦农民,要他们对地主俯首帖耳。

  当地那些常年忍饥挨饿、一辈子负债累累的穷苦农民中,流传着一首这样的歌谣:

  年年秋收忙
  家家炊断粮
  欠下阎王债
  永世难还帐
  几个烂瓦罐
  一间破草房
  半垧荒坡地
  野菜充饥肠
  五个土坟头
  两眼泪汪注

  这百来户人家大多住在山脚下的窑洞里。一条小河从村南蜿蜒流过,两岸柳条垂拂水面。河边有一座磨坊,当地老乡都上这儿来磨麦子碾玉米。小麦和玉米是石壁村农户年年种的两种主要庄稼。村中幸有几处种有桃树、杏树和梨树的小果园点缀其间,这里的景致才不致显得过于荒凉。

OVERTHROWING a European government by a coup d'etat at the top, as was done in Czechoslovakia, is perhaps an exact science when done by a sufficient party of trained cadres with arms in hand. But making a revolution from the bottom up, village by village, as was done in China, is an inexact art that guarantees no sure success and that demands a world of patience, an infinitude of cunning and a bellyful of resolution. Such activities, if scrambled at, can become dangerous.

  I think I can best illustrate the difficulty of making this type of revolution and incidentally reveal some of the techniques of the Communist party by telling the story of how a single village revolted against its landlord. It is a story rather reminiscent of a Greek tragedy in its plot and it concerns Stone Wall Village - a hamlet of five hundred people located in the southern part of Shansi Province, amid a range of hills, old and redolent of Chinese legend, that are known as the Taiyueh Mountains.

  The land in this region is rocky, bare of forest and grudging in its fertility so that the hard-pressed farmers have been forced to build terraces and cultivate the hill slopes nearly to the top of every peak. For many centuries, the peasants have been struggling not only against the parsimonious nature of these mountains, but against the brutal exactions and dark superstitions of a civilization probably very much like that which Christ knew. These people, however, believed in no Supreme God, but rather knew many gods, including the God of Fate who made them poor, and ghosts, devils and evil spirits whom they believed lurked in the rocks, trees and the bodies of the animals which roamed their hills. As a consequence, they were easy prey for the intrigues of village witches who called down spirits to their incense tables and frightened peasants into doing the bidding of the landlords.

  The common farmers, always hungry and always in debt, had a verse about their bitter lot which ran like this:

  Harvest every year; but yearly - nothing.
  Borrow money yearly; yearly still in debt.
  Broken huts, small basins, crooked pots;
  Half an acre of land; five graves.

  About one hundred families lived in Stone Wall Village, many of them in caves hollowed out of the side of the mountain at the base of which the village was situated. South of the town ran a river, overhung with willows and cedars, on the banks of which was a mill where the people ground their wheat and Indian corn - the two crops raised yearly by Stone Wall Village. The barren aspect of the place was somewhat relieved by small orchards of peach, apricot and pear trees.

  石壁村有一点独特之处,与中国大部分农村迥然不同:这里的妇女养的孩子都不太多。原因有好几个。一是因为当地不少农民穷得根本养不起老婆,只好一辈子打光棍。二是由于穷困所迫,每当生下女孩,作父母的往往将其勒死。三是在抗日战争时期,日军在河对岸的一个据点盘踞六年,村里许多妇女遭到日本鬼子的奸淫蹂躏,引起性病流行,造成不少妇女丧失了生育能力。

  村长是一个名叫王常盈的地主,他一手操纵全村大权。虽然这个人物的个性特征与我所要讲的故事关系不大,但也不妨顺便提一提。他五十岁上下年纪,留着一小撮羊胡子,嘴上老叼着个长筒的水烟袋。逢上好天气,他就在村子里游来逛去,哪个小孩不小心挡了他的道,立刻就会被他抓住毒打一顿。穷苦农民一见了他就赶紧躲进屋里,

  他拥有近四百亩水浇地(村里没有任何别的人家有二十亩以上的土地),还有一座磨坊和满仓的粮食。家中有一妻、一子、一女,还有个儿媳妇。他为人心狠手辣。

  因为村子里数他最富,所以他的老婆和闺女是全村穿戴得最讲究,打扮得最干净利落的娘们。在抗日战争期间,王常盈逼着他的老婆和亲生闺女去和一个日军小队长姘居。当时,这支日军就驻扎在六、七里以外的桥北村。王常盈一家通过这种可耻的关系,得了不少好处。日军小队长让王常盈经管从农民那里强征来的粮食,听任王常盈从中渔利。此外,这位小队长还把

  他从各地掠夺来的布匹和家具等当作礼物送给王家。王常盈的儿子对他爹甘当汉奸以及他娘和妹妹与日本鬼子的这种淫乱关系,不以为耻,反以为荣。因为依靠这种关系,他就可以有别于村中的其他年轻人,免受劳役之苦。他二十五岁左右,高高的个子,模样俊俏,举让傲慢。他经常身穿一件黑色大褂,头裹一条洁白的毛巾,白天在村子里大摇大摆地闲逛,夜里就如同一只贪婪的饿虎,看上了谁家的女人就推门直入,肆意蹂躏。倘若有人敢于反抗,他就以日本人的淫威相胁迫。

 

  Stone Wall Village had one peculiarity that set it apart from most Chinese villages: its women did not raise many children. The reasons for this were manifold. In the first place, many of the farmers were too poor to support a wife and did not marry. Secondly, girl babies were often strangled by their parents at birth because of poverty. Thirdly, the Japanese, who had occupied a strong point on the opposite bank of the river for six years, had raped many of the women, venereal disease had become widespread and many of the women had become sterile.

  Politically, Stone Wall Village was in the hands of its village chief, a landlord named Wang Chang-ying. Although his personal characteristics are not germane to this story, it may be mentioned in passing that Landlord Wang was fifty years old, that he wore a small goatee and smoked a long-handled water pipe. In fair weather, it was said that he promenaded on the streets and beat any child who was unfortunate enough to bump into him. At sight of him, many of the village poor would immediately run indoors.

  Wang's possessions included sixty-five acres (no one else owned more than three acres) of irrigated land, the riverside mill, a large store of grain, one wife, one son, one daughter, one daughter-in-law and a vengeful nature.

  Because of the landlord's comparative wealth, Wang's wife and daughter were the best-dressed women in the village, and for the same reasons the cleanest. During the war against Japan, Chang had coerced his wife and daughter to service the sexual needs of a Japanese platoon leader stationed in the village of Chaopeitsun, two miles away, and from this relationship the family had derived profit, if not pleasure. The platoon leader winked an eye at the share of the Japanese grain levy (exacted from the peasantry) kept by Wang and also brought the family gifts of cloth and furniture gained from his various looting expeditions.

  The economic transactions of his father and the sexual ones of his mother and sister did not disturb the son of Landlord Wang, for through these arrangements he was able to avoid being conscripted for hard labor as were the other youths of the village. Twenty-five years old, tall, handsome and with a proud manner, Wang's son used to stride about the village in the daytime in a long black gown and a clean white towel on his head. At night, however, he was a tiger on the prowl, peremptorily knocking on doors and forcing himself on whatever woman took his fancy. If any were bald enough to object, he would threaten them with the Japanese.

  村里有个名叫石平华的富农,是王常盈的好友,也是他的管家和得力助手。此外,村里还有两、三户小地主,地不过十几亩,也没有什么实权。

  王常盈在村里有个宿敌,名叫李天享,是个佃户,年过花甲,长须及胸,额上和眼角布满深深的皱纹,嘴里的牙也已脱落过半。不论冬夏,他总是穿着一件肮脏的破布衫,走路弓腰驼背,奈拉着脑袋。李天享租了王常盈七亩地,每年打下的粮食,一半都交了租子,剩下的那点实在难以养活有妻子和一个十岁儿子的三口之家。他原来还有一个长子,后来被王常盈借日本人的刀把他杀害了,从此王李两家便结下了不共戴天之仇。

  在抗日战争期间,王常盈经常宴请那个日军小队长,而酒宴的一切费用,那是从贫苦的佃户们那里勒索来的。这种无止境的敲诈激怒了村里的群众,李天享的儿子和另外两个青年民兵下决心干掉这个小队长。有一天,他们从山坡上的一个窑洞里朝日军小队长扔了一枚手榴弹,不料这枚手榴弹没有爆炸。地主王常盈侦知是他们干的,就向日军告了密。小队长立即把这三人抓起来,带进三官庙里用刺刀凌迟处死。从此,李天享对王常盈更怀有深仇大恨。但多年受压迫的生活使他不敢独自进行反抗。村里与地主王常盈有冤仇的人远不止李天享一个,在此就不一一赘述了。

  到了一九四五年,日本投降了。但这对于石壁衬的老乡来说,并无什么特别的意义。尽管他们看到河对岸的日本人卷起铺盖撤走了,日军小队长再也不到王家来花天酒地寻欢作乐了,但是地主王常盈依然大权在捏,他的儿子照旧在村里横行霸道,奸淫妇女,租子也未减分毫,穷人们还是负债累累。

  正是在这样的状况之下,土地革命的浪潮冲击到了石壁村,关于这次革命,村子里已有所传闻。人们私下里纷纷议论有关八路军、民主制度以及打倒地主,平分土地,建立新农村的传说。对于这些传闻,人们将信将疑.他们认为自己受苦受穷是命中注定的,他们无意冒犯任何人,只求苟且偷安。

  关于以上那些传说,地主王常盈也有所耳闻,但他并不十分担心,只是时常警告村里的人说:“别人身上割下来的肉,长不到自己身上去。”其实,这种警告大可不必,因为村里并没有人想要起来造他的反。

  然而土地革命毕竟还是来到了石壁村。但是,如同中国的一切事物一样,运动开始时很缓慢。其来势并非像风驰电掣那般迅猛,它的到来也并不是以一声惊雷,伴随着锣鼓的喧闹、枪炮的鸣响以及震撼旷野的口号声来宣告的。

  更确切地说,这场革命是由五个人带来的。他们既非八路军战士,也不是共产党员,其中一个是教员,一个是学生,一个是跑堂的,一个是店员,还有一个是农民。这五个人是霍县救国会派来帮助石壁村闹翻身的。

  Wang's chief friend in the village was a rich farmer named Shih Ping-hua, who acted as the landlord's clerk and assistant. There were two or three other small landlords in the village, but none of them owned more than two acres of land and none had power.

  The chief personal enemy of Wang was a tenant farmer named Lee Tien-shang, or Original Fortune Lee. Sixty years old, with a beard down to his chest, his forehead wrinkled like a washboard, his mouth half emptied of teeth, and his eyes radiating crow's-feet, Lee walked around the village, summer and winter, in filthy white rags, his back bent at a forty-five degree angle and his head inclined toward the ground. Lee rented seven mow of land from Wang, but since he had to give half of his crops to the landlord, he was barely able to support his wife and ten-year-old son. There had been another son, but he had died, and the manner of his dying was the principal cause for the enmity between the landlord and the tenant.

  During the Japanese war, the landlord used to feast the Japanese platoon leader at frequent intervals, exacting from his tenants all the food necessary for such entertainments. The peasants became incensed at the continued extortions and Lee's son and two militiamen decided to kill the platoon leader, but unfortunately a grenade they threw at him from an overhead cave did not explode. Learning who was behind the plot, the landlord informed the lieutenant who dragged Lee's son and the two militiamen from the fields and slowly bayoneted them to death inside the Three Sects Temple. Thus Lee had come to hate Wang, but he was too afraid and had been too long suppressed to take any action of his own. There were other enemies of the landlord in the village, but here it is not necessary to do any more than note their existence.

  In 1945, the Japanese Empire surrendered to the United States, but this meant little to the people of Stone Wall Village. True, they saw the Japanese across the river pack up and leave, and no longer did the platoon leader come to feast with Wang and sleep with his daughter and wife, but the landlord remained the power in the village, his son still blackjacked women into sleeping with him, land rents remained as high as ever and everyone was always in debt.

  Such was the condition of Stone Wall Village when the Chinese Revolution suddenly descended on it. There had been vague stories of this revolution in the village; there had been murmurings about the 8th Route Army, about a thing called democracy and about villages where there were no landlords and everyone had an equal amount of land. But the people had listened to these rumors with only half an ear; they were poor and fated to be poor; they did not want to fight anybody, they only wanted to be left alone.

  Landlord Wang had also heard these rumors; he did not take them seriously either. But as a precaution, he used to tell the people: "Flesh cut from others won't stick to your own body." The people, however, did not need this warning: they had no intention of moving against Landlord Wang.

  Nevertheless, the Revolution came to Stone Wall Village. It did not come like a flash of swift lightning; for a revolution like everything else moves slowly in China. Nor did it announce itself like a clap of thunder, with the beat of drums, the sound of rifle fire or hot slogans shouted on the country air.

  To be more exact, five men brought the Revolution to Stone Wall Village. They were not soldiers nor were they Communist party members. One had been a schoolteacher, another a student, a third a waiter, a fourth a shop assistant and a fifth a farmer. They were all members of the Hohsien County Salvation Association and their job was to "Overturn" Stone Wall Village.

  “翻身”是中国革命运动中的一个术语,初见于抗战胜利之后。在共产党的术语中,它的含意是:使每一个村子的社会、政治、经济生活来一个翻天覆地的大转变,推翻封建主义,建立民主政府,破除迷信,提倡科学。翻身运动的第一阶段是斗地主分田地。

  这一切听起来似乎很容易。只要你手中有枪杆子,大权在握,叫地主把地分给农民,不就得了?没那么轻松的事。石壁当时一无军队,二无民兵。八路军还在南边很远的地方,甚至游击队当时也转移到别处去了。地主王常盈仍然执掌着村里的大权,老百姓无不怕他。

  霍县救国会工作组的组长名叫周玉川,年方三十一岁,出身于破落富农家庭。他率工作组进村以后,四处张贴晋冀鲁豫边区政府的布告,宣布每个村子都有权选举自己的村干部,实行减租减息。随后他们召开群众大会,宣讲布告的内容。可是老乡听了半信半疑,一个个噤若寒蝉,一言不发,拔腿就走。

  "Overturn" is a term of the Chinese Revolution that came into being after the surrender of the Japanese. In Communist terminology it means to turn over the social, political and economic life of every village, to overturn feudalism and establish democracy, to overturn superstition and establish reason. The first step of the overturning movement is to "struggle" against the landlords and divide the land.

  To do this sounds easy. You have the guns and the power and you just tell the landlord to give a share of his land to the people. But it is never that easy. In Stone Wall Village, there was no army, there was no militia. The 8th Route Army was far to the south. Even the guerrillas had gone elsewhere. Landlord Wang was the power and the people were afraid of him.

  The leader of the Hohsien Salvation team was a thirty-one-year-old cadre, the son of a bankrupt rich fanner, named Chou Yu-chuan. When Chou and his fellow-workers arrived in Stone Wall Village they posted proclamations of the Shansi-Hopei-Honan-Shantung Border Region government, announcing that every village had the right to elect their own officials and that land rents and rates of interest should be reduced.

  Then they called a meeting to explain these proclamations, but the people listened only half-heartedly, kept their mouths tightly shut and went home without speaking further to the cadres.

  工作组又分头进行访贫问苦,可是接连几天没人敢同他们说话。只要工作组员走近聚集在一起的人群,众人便一哄而散。有一、两个人在再三追问之下,才道出了他们对地主的恐惧心理。

  在这种情况下,工作组无法开展工作,于是他们决定在村里挑选一个苦大仇深的贫苦农民,进行秘密串连。

  在周玉川和另一个工作组员合住的窑洞隔壁,住着佃户马臭子一家。马家的窑洞是马臭子在抗战前用妻子纺线挣得的六块大洋买来的。马臭于的妻子身患重病,卧床不起,马臭子经常到隔壁窑洞里和干部们挤一个炕睡。夜里他们三人常在一起聊天。

  马臭子讲到他们家自清朝以来祖祖辈辈都是贫苦的佃户,全靠租种地主的土地过日子,自家不曾有过一分地。每年的收成只有八石谷子,一半得给地主王常盈缴租子。眼看着妻子久病不愈,生命垂危,也没钱给她治病抓药。两年前他爹去世时,家里连口棺材也买不起,只好用草席裹了埋。现在他年已三十五岁,依然一贫如洗,看来永无出头之日了。“咱寻思大概是咱脑袋瓜太笨了。”

  他往往用这句话来归纳他贫穷的根源。干部们就问他:“你穷是因为你脑袋瓜太笨,还是因为你爹没有给弥留下什么遗产呢?”

  “对了,就是因为我爹啥也没有给我留下。”“真是这样吗?”

  干部们又问道,“咱们来算算这笔帐。你每年给地主交四石粮食的租子,你们一家替地主种了六十年地,那就是二百四十石粮食。如果这些粮食不交给地主,那你的日子不就富裕了吗?所以说,你受穷是因为你叫地主剥削了。”

  就这样他们一聊就是好几个小时,最后终于使马臭子懂得,他确实是受了地主的剥削。于是他说道:“那咱该怎么办呢?大伙儿都瞧不起咱。吃饭的时候,地主在屋里吃,咱只能端着碗站在外面吃。咱不行,被也瞧不起咱。”

  “可为啥会这样呢?”干部们说,“那是因为你没有钱,没有钱就没有势。所以咱们要闹翻身,将来人人才能平等,谁也不会瞧不起谁。”马臭子也说,不推翻地主,穷人就别想过上好日子。但他对自己所讲的话,还是半信半疑。在言语与行动之间,仍然还有一段相当长的距离。两千年的旧传统观念,依然沉重地压在马臭子以及大多数中国农民的思想上。

  半个月的时间内,干部们与马臭子进行过多次长谈,除了夜里经常聊天以外,光正式的谈话就有二十三次之多。他们也和村里其他农民交谈过,但表现最积极的还得数马臭子。从上述事例中可以看到,要发动中国农民起来革命是何等不容易。

  最后,马臭子终于决定要参加“斗争”和“清算”了——这两个革命术语的意思是指斗争地主,与他算帐。但他内心多少还是有点胆怯。他对干部们说:“咱们干起来后,你们可千万不要走。”干部们向他保证说;“全村的受苦人不翻身,我们是不会走的。“

  For several days, the cadres went individually among the people asking them about local conditions and their own lives, but no one would talk. Whenever a cadre approached groups of people, they would break apart and move away. One or two men cornered alone admitted they were afraid of the landlord.

  Under these conditions, the cadres could not carry on their work, so they decided to seek out one of the poorer men in the village and talk to him alone and in secret.

  At this time, Chou and another cadre were living in a cave next door to one occupied by a tenant farmer, named Ma Chiu-tze. Ma had bought his cave before the Japanese war with six dollars earned by his wife in spinning thread. Now, his wife was sick and Ma often came to the cadre's cave and slept on the same kang with them. During the night, the three men always talked.

  Ever since the Ching dynasty, Ma revealed, his family had been poor tenants, renting land and never having any of their own. Every year, he raised eight piculs of millet and every year he had to give four of these piculs to Landlord Wang. He could afford no medicine for his wife whom he feared was dying. Two years before, his father had died and he had not been able to buy the old man a coffin, but had to wrap him in straw. Now he was thirty-five and he was still poor and it looked as if he would always be poor. "I guess I have a bad brain," he would say in summing up the reasons for his poverty.

  Then the cadres would ask: "Are you poor because you have a bad brain or because your father left you no property?"

  "I guess that's the reason; my father left me no property."

  "Really is that the reason?" asked the cadres. "Let us take an account. You pay four piculs of grain every year to the Iancftord. Your family has rented land for sixty years. That's 240 piculs of grain. If you had not given this to the landlord, you would be rich. The reason you are poor, then, is because you have been exploited by the landlord."

  They would talk like this for hours and Ma would finally acknowledge that he was exploited by the landlord. Then he would say: "What can I do? Everyone looks down on me. When it's mealtime, the landlord eats inside the house, but I must eat outside, standing up. I am not good enough. Everyone looks down on me."

  "And why is that?" said the cadres. "That is because you have no money and because you have no money you have no position. That is why we must overturn so that everyone can have an equal position and no man will look down on another."

  Ma agreed that the landlords had to be overthrown before there could be any happiness for the poor, but he was only half convinced of his own statements. There was yet a long distance between words and action and the weight of two thousand years of tradition lay very heavily on Ma as on most Chinese peasants.

  For fifteen days, the cadres talked with Ma. In this period they had twenty-three formal talks with him besides the numerous evening talks. They conversed with other farmers in the village, but Ma was the most "active" element. From this it can be seen it is not easy to stir a Chinese peasant.

  At last Ma was ready to "struggle" and "settle" - two terms of the Revolution that mean to struggle against the landlord and to settle accounts with him. Still, Ma was a little frightened.

  "If we go to work," he said to the cadres, "you must not leave us."

  "We will stay until the whole village has turned over," the cadres promised.

  马臭子成了石壁革命的代表人物。然而要推翻封建主义的统治,光靠一个人的力量是远远不够的,还需要更多的人投入斗争。工作组进村后第十六天的晚上,马臭子把三个知心好友带进了那间窑洞,其中包括李天享老汉。

  干部们先请他们抽烟,然后对他们说,工作组进村来是帮助他们建立自己的政府的。干部们说道;“我们知道你们石壁的老乡们吃苦啦。我们自己也是受过压迫的苦庄稼人,所有受压迫的劳苦大众都是一家人。你们把受过的苦都讲出来,我们设法替你们清算。如果大伙儿今天晚上不想说,那也没啥,回去再好好想想,过个三、四天以后再来谈也行。“

  这一番语重心长的话使他们四人深受感动,便开始倾吐各自的苦水。有时四个人争先恐后地一齐讲起来。其中一个名叫刘广的二十岁青年讲到,王常盈如何逼迫他到日本人的劳工队里去干活,他不肯去,王家父子就把他吊在一口水井里,水一直淹到脖子那儿。当他被拉上来时,已经奄奄一息了。打那以后,他就再也不能下地干活了。

  一个名叫二宝的长工诉说了地主王常盈怎样强迫他把埋藏在地下的粮食挖出来。最后轮到李天享讲述他的儿子是怎样被日本鬼子用刺刀捅死的。说到这里,四人再也按捺不住心头的悲愤,失声痛哭起来。他们一直谈到深夜,最后得出了结论:现在到了报仇雪恨的时候了。他们在一起庄严宣誓:“不论是日本鬼子明天卷土重来也好,还是蒋介石的军队打过来也好,咱们下定决心要闹翻身,哪怕只能翻一天身,咱们也要干!”

  会议结束时,大伙儿决定发动更多的群众参加斗争。第二天晚上,参加会议的群众就增加到十三人了。这个数字后来证明确是不吉祥的。在这次会议上,经过一番“诉苦”之后,大家决定进一步发动群众,准备召开全村的诉苦大会。

  在这次会议上,有一两个与会的农民提出,他们担心王常盈已经打听到了他们开会的情况,因为有个过去当过伪军的家伙知道这次会议,而这个家伙又是王常盈女儿的姘头。他们估计,恐怕王常盈现在已经掌提了情报。可是干部们对他们这种担忧并不十分在意,只劝慰大家不必过虑。

  Ma Chiu-tze became the Revolution in Stone Wall Village. But one man is not enough to overturn feudalism. More help was needed. So on the sixteenth night of the cadre's stay in the village, Ma brought three of his friends into the cave, including the old farmer Original Fortune Lee.

  After offering the farmers cigarettes, the cadres' announced they had come to Stone Wall Village to help the people establish a government of their own choosing. "We know you people of Stone Wall Village are eating bitterness," they said. "we, too, in our turn have been oppressed. All the oppressed are from one home. Tell us your sufferings and we shall try to settle them for you. If you don't want to tell us tonight - why - think them over and come and tell us in three or four days."

  Under the influence of this talk, the four men began to tell their own private sufferings, sometimes all speaking at once. One of them, a twenty-year-old boy named Liu Kwang, told how Wang had ordered him to go to work in the Japanese labor corps. When he refused, the landlord and his son had lowered him into a well in water up to his neck. When pulled up, he was more dead than alive and could neither work for the Japanese or in his own fields.

  A long-term worker named Second Jewel Pao told how the landlord had forced him to dig up grain from a secret hiding place. Finally, Original Fortune Lee told how his son had been bayoneted to death. At this time, the four peasants became so emotional they began to cry. Toward midnight, they reached the conclusion that the time had at last come for their revenge. They swore a solemn oath. "If the Japanese come hack tomorrow or if the troops of Chiang Kai-shek come, we will turn over. Even if only for a day, we will turn."

  The meeting then broke up with the decision to mobilize more farmers. On the following night, a second meeting was attended by thirteen peasants. It was to prove an unlucky number. In this meeting after the usual "reveal bitterness" talk, it was decided to mobilize more farmers and then hold a mass meeting in which all the villagers could reveal their sufferings.

  During the meeting, one or two farmers expressed the fear that Landlord Wang had heard about their talks. Since an ex-puppet militiaman knew of the meeting and since he was sleeping with the landlord's daughter, they surmised the landlord must by now be informed of everything. The cadres made light of the peasants' fears and told them not to worry.

  当天晚上,李天享一夜未归。他是个年迈的老人,从不在外边过夜,他的老伴为此非常焦虑。过了一天,又过了一天,老汉仍然没有回家,她几乎急疯了,逢人就打听,可是谁也不知道她丈夫的下落。人们最后见到李天享时,他刚开完会,正朝家走去。在他回家的途中,要经过一道临江的悬崖。究竟他是在黑夜里失足落崖了呢,还是错过了家门,走出了村子,谁也无法解开这个疑团。

  直到第三天,有人到河边的磨坊磨面,突然感到水轮转动不太正常,仔细一查看,发现了李天享的尸体挂在水轮的辐条上。老汉的双手被反缚在身后,嘴里还塞着一团破布,看上去死去已非一日。

  干部们把他的尸体从水轮上弄下来,抬到三官庙里。在中国有个古老的风俗,凡是被谋杀致死的人,尸体不能运回家,所以只好先把尸首存放在庙里,再派人去通知死者的妻子。他的妻子闻讯赶来,替她丈夫穿上白布寿衣,滴滴热泪洒落在死者的麻子脸上。最后她一头扑在丈夫身上,号啕大哭起来。周围的人们看到这样凄惨的情景,内心无不感到十分悲痛。回家以后,他们私下互相告诫:“还是少开口为妙,弄不好下次就搞到咱们头上了。”

  反革命势力先下手了。石壁村的革命斗争受到了很大挫折。

  自从李天享被害以后,村子里人人自危,一个个又噤若寒蝉了。曾经参加那个第二次会议的人说道: “咱们还没有开始斗争地主,自己的人倒先被他们干掉了一个。”

  这次谋杀案件也使干部们十分震惊,他们认识到自己也太麻痹了,对于群众反映的忧虑末充分予以重视。他们也估计到,说不定什么时候,会有人往他们开会的窑洞里扔手榴弹。但他们最担心的还是,群众可能会对翻身运动完全丧失信心。他们决定要为死者举行追悼大会,通过这种活动重新发动群众。

  That night, Original Fortune Lee did not come home. As he was an old man and never stayed out at night his wife was worried. When a whole day and then another passed without his appearing, she became frantic and inquired of everyone in the village if they had seen her husband, but no oiie could give her any information. He had last been seen leaving the meeting and heading for home. His path, it was known, led along a cliff that overhung the river. Whether he had slipped in the darkness and fallen in the water or had just continued walking by his home and left the village was a mystery which no one m the town could answer.

  On the third day, a man grinding flour in the water mill beside the river noticed that his water wheel was not turning properly and on investigation he found the body of Original Fortune Lee riding amid the spokes. The old man's mouth was gagged with a cloth, his hands were tied behind him and he had been some time dead.

  As no one else would touch him, the cadres extricated the body from the water wheel and carried it up to the Three Sects Temple. Since there is an ancient law in China that the body of a murdered man may not be brought to his home, they left him there and called his wife. Then she came and dressed Original Fortune Lee in funeral white and shed tears on his pock-marked face and moaned over his body. The people saw and they felt sorry, but they went off home and they whispered among themselves: "Better keep quiet, we may be next."

  The revolution in Stone Wall Village had been dealt a blow. The counterrevolution had struck first.

  After the murder of Original Fortune Lee the people went about in terror and shut up again like clams. Even those who had attended the second meeting now said: "We haven't begun to struggle with the landlord, but one of us is gone already.

  The cadres were very much surprised by the murder. They thought they had been too careless and had not placed enough belief in the peasants' fears. They also thought a hand grenade might be thrown at any time into their meeting cave. Their biggest fear, however, was that the peasants would give up the overturning movement altogether. Therefore they decided to hold a memorial meeting in honor of Original Fortune Lee, and by this meeting to mobilize the people.

  三官庙前有一座戏台,逢年过节,村民们都要在这里演出带宗教色彩的戏剧。李天享的追悼会就在这里举行。戏台上悬挂着中国共产党中央委员会主席毛泽东和共产党领导下的第十八集团军总司令朱德将军的画像。画像两旁张贴着标语,上书:“我们一定要为死者报仇!”

  石壁村有一百来人参加了追悼大会,地主王常盈没有露面。县长专程赶来致悼词,并当众宣布:“政府决心要肃清一切暗杀活动,大伙儿应该继续闹翻身,建立自己的民主政府。”

  追悼大会整整开了四个小时。大会结束之后,接着又召开了一次讨论如何继续闹翻身的会议。只有六个农民参加了这次会议,其余的人谁也没有直接表示不敢参加,只是低声下气地找个借口说;“咱还有点事。”与会的六个人当即提出,由于李天享的被害,必须马上清算地主王常盈。五天以后,这六人又串连了三十来人到那间窑洞里参加会议。会上,他们一一诉说了在地主的压迫之下所受的苦难,一直谈到深夜。这时,有人提出;“说不定王常盈那小子想开溜。”

  “干脆咱们今天晚上就把他给抓起来!”好几个人齐声提议说。

  经过一番讨论后,大伙儿涌出窑洞,朝着王常盈家冲去。这伙人带着一支步枪和三个手榴弹。

  这支队伍兵分两路,一部分人登上悬崖,设法从窑洞的上方翻进王家大院,另一部分人径直冲到王家大门口,使劲敲门,大声喝今王常盈出来开门。王常盈的妻子应声把门打开,推说她的男人不在家。没有人相信她的鬼话,人们冲进院里四处搜查,最后在一个柜子后面发现一条秘密地道。人们下到地道里,进入一间地窖,发现王常盈正缩作一团躲在那里,立即把他抓住关押起来。

  王常盈的儿子却溜掉了,连夜逃到三十里外的霍县县城在那一带,有几个村的地主网罗了一批土匪、伪军人员以及军阀阎锡山部队的兵痞,组织了一个“还乡团”。当群众得知王常盈的儿子潜逃以后,大家深感忧虑,他们说:“擒虎容易,放虎归山可就后患无穷了。”

  On the stage opposite the Three Sects Temple, where semireligious plays were held during festival times, the cadres placed pictures of Mao Tze-tung, chairman of the Chinese Communist party and General Chu Teh, commander in chief of the Communist-led i8th Group Army. Beside these pictures they placed strips of paper saying: WE SHALL TAKE REVENGE FOR THIS PEASANT.

  One hundred people of Stone Wall Village attended this meeting, but Landlord Wang did not come. The county magistrate came especially to make a speech and announced: "The government intends to clear up all murders. The people should continue to overturn and to establish a democratic government of their own.?"
The memorial meeting lasted four hours. After it was over, another meeting was called to decide how to continue "overturning." Only six farmers came to this meeting. No one said directly that he was afraid to attend, but weakly gave the excuse: "We have a little work to do.?" These six men, however, decided that because of the murder they would have to "settle" with Landlord Wang immediately.

  At the end of five days, thirty farmers mobilized by the other six gathered in the cave for another meeting. Until nearly midnight, they told stories of how they had suffered at the landlord's hands. Suddenly, someone said: "Maybe Wang will run away."

  "Let's get him tonight," said several farmers at once.

  After some discussion, they all trooped out of the cave and started a march on Landlord Wang's home. Among the thirty men, there was one rifle and three hand grenades.

  The marching farmers separated into two groups. One climbed on top of the diffs and worked along the cave roofs until they were over the courtyard. The others marched directly to the gate, knocked loudly and commanded the landlord to open up.

  Wang's wife answered the door and announced that her husband was not at borne. Refusing to believe her, the peasants made a search and discovered a secret passage behind a cupboard. Descending through an underground tunnel, they found Wang cowering in a subterranean cave.

  They took him away and locked him up overnight. That night Wang's son fled to the county seat of Hohsien, ten miles away. Here landlords from other villages had organized bandits, former puppet troops, and some of the soldiers of Warlord Yen Hsi-shan into a "Revenge Corps." When the people learned of the flight of Wang's son, they grew anxious and said among themselves: "It is easy to catch a tiger, but it is dangerous to let him go back to the forest."

  尽管如此,大家仍然决心把对地主王常盈的斗争进行到底。当天,在村子南边离小河不远的一片开阔场地上举行了群众大会。有七、八十人在大会上控诉了王常盈的罪行。王常盈的老婆和女儿也在下面听着。

  大会从早晨一直开到下午,控诉的群众历数了王常盈的罪状,如出卖抗日志士,抢劫老百姓的粮食,强迫群众加入劳工队等等。最后大家质问王常盈认不认罪。

  “这些事,”他回答说,“说实在的可不是咱干的,那都是日本人叫干的。”这样的回答立即引起群情激愤,群众的怒吼声有如大海的怒涛,响彻原野。就连站在场外旁观的人们此时也不由得义愤填膺。

  在这一片怒吼声中,“把他吊起来!”的呼喊,盖过了所有其他的声音。大会主席和到会的干部也无法制止,愤怒的群众已经忘记了他们的存在。人群把王常盈层层围了起来。有人在一棵树上挂起一根粗绳,一部分人将绳的一端拴在王常盈腰上,另一部分人在绳子的另一端使劲一拽,就把王常盈吊在空中了。他的脑袋耷拉着,腰部与地面平行,双腿叉开,这副姿势恰似中国一句俗语所说的“鸭子浮水”。

  义愤填膺的群众簇拥在吊在半空中的王常盈的四周,怒目而视,骂不绝口,有的还往他眼里吐唾沫,有的冲着他耳朵大骂。

  王常盈被吊起来后,越来越感到难受,心里也愈加恐惧起来。最后终于忍受不住了,便叫道:“把我放下来,我认罪,我全招了。”

  然而群众的愤恨却不是如此轻易就能平息的,他们以这样的喊叫作为回答;“再把他吊高点!再高点!再高点!”过了一会儿,群众稍稍解了点恨,几个比较有头脑的人说:“如果现在就让他死掉,咱们就没法对他进行清算了。”于是大家把王常盈放下来,让他喘口气。

  这时,李天享的妻子走到王常盈身边,满腔悲愤地质问:“有人把俺男人给害死了,是不是你干的?”

  王常盈的脸因他刚才被吊在树上而涨得通红,这时刷的一下变成土色了。他回答说:“不是我干的。”

  “放老实点!”众人一齐喊道。“你老实交代便罢,要是不说实话,就把你再吊起来!”

  “不,不是我干的。”话音未落,有人一拽绳子,又把他高高吊起来。这次吊时间比上次还长,王常盈实在忍受不了这样的痛苦,求道;“把我放下来,我交代。”他又是哭哭啼啼,又是长吁短叹地招供了他如何伙同他的儿子在李天享回家的路上截住了他,把他的双手捆绑起来,把头按进水里,直到把他呛死,然后把尸首扔进河里,满以为尸首会顺水漂走。

  王常盈的话音刚落,人群中又爆发出阵阵怒吼。

  “在抗战时,你就杀害了我们三个人,”刘广站出来说道,“那先不算,光眼下的罪孽用你的狗命也偿还不了!”人们又把王常盈给吊了起来。这时,有许多人高喊:“吊死他!吊死他!“另一些人叫道:“没那么便宜!得先让他尝尝咱们吃过的苦头!”

  Nevertheless, they decided to go ahead with the struggle against Landlord Wang. That same day a mass meeting was called in a great square field south of the town, not far from the river. About eighty people came to complain against Wang, while the rest of the village watched - among them Wang's wife and daughter.

  In the course of the morning and afternoon, the crowd accused the landlord of many crimes, including betrayal of resistance members to the Japanese, robbing them of grain, forcing them into labor gangs. At last, he was asked if he admitted the accusations.

  "All these things I have done," he said, "but really it was not myself who did it, but the Japanese." He could not have chosen worse words. Over the fields now sounded an angry roar, as of the sea, and the crowd broke into a wild fury. Everybody shouted at once, proclaiming against the landlord's words. Even the nonparticipating bystanders warmed to something akin to anger.

  Then above the tumult of the crowd came a voice louder than the rest, shouting: "Hang him up!" The chairman of the meeting and the cadres were disregarded. For all that the crowd noticed they did not exist.

  The crowd boiled around Wang, and somewhere a rope went swishing over a tree. Willing hands slung one end of the rope around Wang's waist. Other eager hands gave the rope a jerk. Wang rose suddenly and came to a halt in mid-air about three feet above the earth. And there he hung, his head down, his stomach horizontal and his legs stretched out - perfect illustration of what the Chinese call a "Duck's swimming form."

  About his floating body, the crowd foamed, anger wrinkling their foreheads and curses filling their mouths. Some bent down and spit in the landlord's eyes and others howled into his ears.

  As he rose from the ground, the landlord felt a terror which mounted higher as his position became more uncomfortable. Finally, he could bear it no longer and shouted: "Put me down. I know my wrongs. I admit everything."

  The spite of the crowd, however, was not so easily assuaged and they only answered the landlord's pleas with shouts: "Pull him up! He's too low! Higher! Higher!" After a while the anger of the people abated and cooler heads counseled. "If we let him die now, we won't be able to settle accounts with him." Then they allowed him to come down for a rest.

  At this point, the wife of Original Fortune Lee came up close Wang and said in a plaintive voice: "Somebody killed my husband. Was it you?"

  Wang's face which had grown red from hanging in the air slowly was drained of all color. "No, I did not do it," he said.

  "Tell the truth," said the crowd. "You can admit everything to us and nothing will happen. But if you don't tell us the truth, we will hang you up again."

  "No, it was not me," These words were hardly out of his mouth before someone jerked on the rope and the landlord flew into the air again. This time the crowd let him hang for a long while. Unable to bear the pain, Wang finally said: "Let me down. I'll speak." Then, between sobs and sighs, he told how he and his son had seized Original Fortune Lee as he was walking home from the meeting, tied his hands together, held his head under water until he was dead and then had thrown him in the river, thinking he would float away.

  A cry of rage went up as Wang finished speaking.

  "You've already killed three of our men in the war," said Liu Kwang. "That could be excused. But now your own life can never repay us for the crimes you've done."
Again Wang was hung up and this time many shouted: "Let him hang until he is dead." But others said: "That is too quick; he must first have a taste of the suffering we've had."

  直到傍晚,才把王常盈放了下来,然后把他关进一间窑洞里,派人看守起来。大会刚一结束,就有二、三十人来到了地主家里,撵走了地主婆和她的女儿,在大门上贴了封条。这两个女人只好到邻村去投靠亲友。

  当天晚上,工作组的五个干部和斗争地主的积极分子们分头到村里四处了解群众的反应。有人拍手称快:“这叫做罪有应得,那小子坏透了!”也有人讲:“太便宜他了!他干了多少伤天害理的事啊!”深夜,在一家大院里召开了积极分子大会,与会群众达一百二十人之多。

  会上,干部们问大家“怎么样,干得带劲吗!”人们异口同声回答:“痛快极了!”可是究竟如何处置王常盈,一时还决定不下来。会上有一半人赞成把他打死。也有个别人说:“可他是上了岁数的人了。”有一部分人还没有拿定主意。也有人提议,应该把王常盈的管家、富农石平华也抓来同地主一块斗。但这条建议最终还是被否决了。人们说:“吃西瓜拣大个的,先拿大头开刀!”

  最后大家一致同意,王常盈杀了人必须偿命。但如何处死他呢?是把他送到区里去判刑呢,还是由群众就地结果了他,或者还有其他什么办法?

  有人说;“如果把他送交军事法庭以汉奸治罪,给他一颗子弹也未免太便宜他了。咱门不如来个先斩后奏。”

  “那谁敢下手?”有人问道。

  这一问使所有的人不约而同地喊了起来:“我敢!我敢!他用刺刀捅死了咱们的民兵,咱们就不能照样整治他?!”

  三天以后,全村的人提前吃了早饭,天刚亮,人们就开始涌向村子南边的广场,当天将要在那里处死王常盈。人群中有男有女,有本村的也有邻村的.有的手拿镰刀、锄头,有的肩扛大刀、长矛,总共大约有七百来人。干部们写的有关王常盈罪状的布告,挂在树上随风飘动。

  一条罪状是:“汉奸王常盈曾杀害我民兵三名以及积极分子一名。”

  另一条罪状是:“在抗日战争期间,不法地主王常盈曾榨取群众大量钱粮。”

  第三条罪状是:“王常盈肆意摊派苛捐杂税,鱼肉乡里。”

  王常盈在三个民兵的押送下被带进了会场,顿时群情激愤,人声鼎沸。人们把面如土色、浑身发抖的王常盈反绑在一棵柳树上。王常盈偷偷瞥了一眼到会的群众,马上又把头低了下去。

  此时人们心中又泛起一阵疑虑。他们不敢相信,世代的仇敌今天果真在他们面前束手待毙;他们不敢相信,今天王常盈就要像一只绵羊似的听任他们宰割。

  只见马臭子从人群中走出来,站在大家面前说:“大伙儿听我说,咱们报仇伸冤的时候到了。”他的声音微微有点颤抖。“对这个罪大恶极的地主,咱们该怎样讨还血债呢?咱们要他偿命!”说完,他转过身去狠狠地给了王常盈一记耳光。这一记响亮的耳光有如晨空爆出震耳的枪声,立刻引起了人群骚动。地主听到人声朝他逼近,慌忙抬起头来。离他最近的人看到他嘴唇蠕动了几下,听见他说;“让我讲两句,就两句话!”站在他身旁的一个人喊道:“少废话!”一边喊一边用锄扒开王常盈的衣服,从胸前一直撕到下身。

  王常盈凄厉地尖叫了一声,无可奈何地垂下了脑袋。人群向他猛扑过去,满腔的怒火使他们脸色铁青,双目溜圆。一个身高体壮的农民举起一把杀猪用的尖刀,一刀扎进了王常盈的心窝。王常盈挣扎了几下(那棵柳树也随着晃动起来),就瘫软了。那个大汉又按二连三地扎了他好几刀。

  地主王常盈很快就一命呜呼了,然而群众还不解恨。狂怒的群众的呼喊声响彻原野:“不让他死了就没事了!”“先让他暴尸几天再说!”“至少也要暴尸三天才许入土!”但这种狂怒情绪终于渐渐平息下来。后来大家冷静一想,尸首放在露天会腐烂发臭,不如让王常盈的妻女来收尸。

  当天傍晚,地主婆和她的女儿雇了一辆大车,来到王常盈尸首停放的地方。两个女人也不敢哭,一声不响地把尸首装上大车运走了。村里没有什么人注意她们的行踪,人们也不再议论了,大约也没有多少话要说了。地主已经被斗倒了。

  石壁村终于翻了身。

  At dusk, they let Wang down once more and put him in a cave under guard again. As soon as the meeting was over, twenty or thirty men went to the landlord's house, drove the wife and daughter out of doors and sealed the house. The two women went to a near-by village to stay with relatives.

  That evening the five cadres and those who had taken an active part in the struggle against the landlord walked around the village to listen to the gossip and sample public opinion. Such words were heard as:

  "Serves him right; he's so wicked. This is too light for him. Just count his sins."

  Later that night another meeting of those of the village who wanted to struggle against the landlord was held in a courtyard. This time 120 people attended.

  When the cadres asked: "How do you feel? Have you done well?" the answer came back: "Oh fine! Fine!" But exactly what to do with the landlord was a problem for which the people at first had no solution. Half of these in the meeting thought he should be beaten to death. A few said: "He is too old." Some had no ideas at all. Others thought that his clerk, the rich farmer Shih Tseng-hua, should be bound up with him at the same time in the struggle. This suggestion, however, was voted down when someone pointed out: "You should always collect the big melons in the field first. So we should cut off the big head first."

  It was decided that Wang must die for his murders. But how? Should he be sent to the district government to be punished, should the people kill him or what?

  "If he is tried before a court-martial for treason," said a farmer, then there will be only one bullet, and that is too cheap for Wang. We ought to kill him first and report to the government afterward."

  "Who dares kill him?" asked a farmer doubtfully.

  At this everyone shouted at once: "We dare. We dare. He bayoneted our militiamen to death and we can also do that to him."

  Three days after this meeting, the whole village breakfasted early, and shortly after sunrise, seven hundred men and women, including visitors from neighboring villages, many armed with pig knives, hoes, sickles, swords and spears went out to the large field south of town where the landlord was to be killed. The cadres had written down Wang's crimes on large pieces of paper and these, hanging by ropes from the trees, now fluttered in the breeze.

  "Traitor Wang Chang-ying killed three militiamen and one active farmer of the village," said one.

  "Sinful Landlord Wang grafted money and grain during the War of Resistance," said another.

  "Wang Chang-ying shifted the tax burden onto the people and looted the village," said a third.

  A shout went up from the crowd as Landlord Wang was led onto the field. Three guards marched him, pale and shaking, to a willow tree where he was bound up. With his back against the tree, the landlord looked once at the crowd but quickly bent his head toward the ground again.

  A slight shiver of apprehension went through the audience. They could not believe their enemy was helpless here before them. He was the lamb led to slaughter, but they could not quite believe they were going to kill him.

  Ma Chiu-tze stepped before the crowd and called for attention. "Now the time has come for our revenge," he announced in a trembling voice. "In what way shall we take revenge on this sinful landlord? We shall kill him." As he said this, he turned around and slapped Wang sharply across the face.

  The crack of palm against cheek rang like a pistol shot on the morning air. A low animal moan broke from the crowd and it leaped into action. The landlord looked up as he heard the crowd rushing on him. Those nearest saw his lips move and heard him say: "Two words, two words please." The man closest shouted: "Don't let him speak!" and in the same breath swung his hoe, tearing the clothes from the bound man's chest and ripping open the lower portion of his body.

  The landlord gave one chilling shriek and then bowed his head in resignation. The crowd was on him like beasts. Their faces had turned yellow and their eyes rolled. A big farmer swung his pig knife and plunged it directly into the landlord's heart. His body quivered - even the tree shook - then slumped, but still the farmer drew his knife in and out, again and again and yet once again.

  Landlord Wang was quickly dead, but the rage of the crowd would not abate.

  The field rang with the shouts of maddened people.

  "It is not enough to kill him." "We must put him in the open air." "We must not allow him to be buried for three days."
But such convulsive passions do not last long. They burn themselves out. Slowly, the anger of the crowd cooled. The body of the landlord might rot in the open air and it were better that his wife and daughter be allowed to get him.

  That evening, as the sun was going down behind the mountain, the landlord's wife and daughter brought a mule cart slowly across the field to where their husband and father lay. They wept no tears, but silently lifted the mutilated body into the cart and drove away.

  Few saw them come and few saw them go. And no one said a word. For there was nothing left to say. The struggle against the landlord was ended.

  Stone Wall Village had turned over.

  石壁村的群众斗倒地主王常盈之后,接着对其财产进行了清算。用共产党的话来说,这叫做分“斗争果实”。

  大伙儿推举了一位能写会算的人,把凡是要分的财物都列出清单,其中除了土地之外,还有家具、粮食、棉花、布匹等等。这是一项十分复杂的工作。

  开始时并非人人都感到满意,后来通过多次开会协商,土地的分配基本上做到了皆大欢喜。每人平均分得四亩水浇地,这确实不算多,但与过去相比,对那些贫苦的农民来说,这已经相当可观丁。实际上不可能做到绝对平均,那些苦大仇深的贫穷户,所分得的土地就稍多一些。此外,对那四位被地主杀害的农民的家属给予了适当的照顾,每户多分了三亩来地。

  马臭子原来只种一亩薄地,现在共分得了近十亩地。当这十亩地分到手后,他备了点酒菜,请来亲朋好友、工作组的干部以及其他一些为石壁村的翻身出过力的乡亲们,到他家作客,共享翻身的喜说。这以后他每天都要到自己地里去转转。秋天农忙时,他更是整日整日地在地里忙着锄草耪地,翻耕耙犁。

  刘广再也不用担心被地主吊下水井里了。他分到一间新房。他的妻子每天一大早就起来忙着洒扫庭院。从那个破窑洞搬进这间新房后,她心里真有说不完的高兴。

  村里还发生了几件奇事,至于读者信与不信,那只好听便了。有个年迈的老汉,因早先向地主借了四分铜钱的债还不起,被王常盈照耳朵打了一拳,从此这只耳朵就聋了。在翻身运动中,他分到了四亩地,心里乐开了花。有一天,他对儿子说:“过去咱是因为受地主欺负才聋的。如今咱心里头高兴,耳朵也不聋了。“他抬头望了一眼墙上挂的神像,气恼地说:“咱供了你多少年,可是你没给咱带来一点好处,现在统统结咱滚蛋吧!”一边说一边把神像撕下来扔进了粪坑里。

  When the struggle against the landlords of Stone Wall Village ended, an immediate settlement of accounts was begun. According to Communist terminology, this involved the division of the "fruits of struggle."

  A man who could write was located and established in a cave where he wrote down all the things that were to be divided. Among other things, this included furniture, grain, cotton and cloth, but principally land.

  Naturally, this was a complicated process and not everyone at first was satisfied, but after several meetings, all the land taken from Wang Chang-ying was split up in a fashion that satisfied most of the people. When all the land was divided, everyone owned on the average two-thirds of an acre of water land; not much it is true, but far more than the poor had had before. Those whose bitterness had been especially heavy in the past were favored where an exactly equal division was impossible. The families of the four murdered farmers received half an acre more than the others.

  Ma Chiu-tze, who previously had owned only one-sixth of an acre of land, now had about an acre and a half for himself and his wife. As soon as the land was his, he gave a feast for his relatives, for those who made out the land credentials, for the county cadres and for those who had helped to turn over Stone Wall Village. Every day, he went out to look at his land and in autumn he weeded, cut grass and plowed the whole day long.

  Liu Kwang, no longer afraid of being lowered into a well by the landlord, received a new house from the settlement. Early every morning, his wife got up and swept out the courtyard, she was so happy to be living in a house instead of a cave.

  Even stranger things happened which the reader may believe or not, as he likes. In the village, there was an old man who was deaf in one ear. Once he had borrowed four cents from the landlord and he had not been able to repay it, so Wang had boxed him on the ear and he had been deaf ever since. In the overturning movement he acquired two-thirds of an acre of land and he became very happy. One day he remarked to his son: "In the past, I was deaf because I was oppressed by the landlord, but now I am in such high spirits that I can hear with my bad ear again." Shortly after this, the old man looked at the pictures of the Earth and Heaven gods on his wall and angrily said: "I worshiped you for many years, but you did me no good. Now I am going to get rid of you all." So saying, he tore the gods from the wall and threw them in the latrine.
  斗倒地主以后,工作组的干部又在村里发动群众组织“农民协会”,从一百五十五名会员中(其中妇女会员三十人),选出了若干名村干部。选举那天成了一个大喜的节日。在这一带山区,多年未见过这样的盛况了。邻村的人也来了,人人兴高采烈。大家就如何进行选举的问题,展开了长时间的热烈讨论。所有的人都是有生以来第一次参加选举,其中多半是一个大字不识的文盲。如果采取举手通过的方式,难免会减弱这首次选举的庄严气氛,而且不是秘密投票。最后决定采取往碗里投放豆子的方式进行选举。结果有五人当选,其中有马臭子、刘广和二宝。参加第一次秘密会议的几个人,除了遇害牺牲了的李天享之外,都当选了。

  此后不久,军阀阎锡山操纵的地主武装“还乡团”在太岳山区的活动日渐猖獗。在石壁村一带,“还乡团”主要是由一些逃亡地主及其狗腿子组成的。有时他们还伙同阎锡山军队,对翻身后的村子进行袭击骚扰。不久,“还乡团”打到了石壁村附近离石壁村六、七里外的桥北村,有一户叫唐济元的地主,土改时农民分了他家的地,他和兄弟一道逃亡到阎锡山盘踞的地区,加入了“还乡团”。他的妻子依旧留在村里。有一天,这个地主婆得知村长、农会主席和民兵队长在村公所开会研究税收问题,马上溜出村子找到她丈夫报信。

  这三位干部开完会时,已经是深夜了,他们当晚就睡在村公所里。半夜里,唐济元两兄弟带领着五十多名匪军闯进衬里,把这三位干部用刺刀给捅死了。然后又把村里的粮食洗劫一空,直到拂晓时分才扬长而去。

  石壁村的群众得悉邻村遭到“还乡团”袭击的消息后,立即开会商讨应变措施。一位村干部说,“敌人就在附近,咱们不能离开村子。他们村的几位干部之所以遇害,是因为他们没有布置岗哨。咱们应该派人在村口放哨,干部们应住到安全的地方。”

  村里现存的武器只有一支步枪,农民协会决定拔出四十石麦子到附近游击队办的兵工厂购买九支步枪和一批手榴弹。采取上述预防措施是完全必要的,因为王常盈的儿子并未忘记杀父之仇,他潜伏在石壁村附近蠢蠢欲动,伺机报复。大家都估计到他是要回来的。人们似乎已经意识到,他们干了一件冒险的事,而且事情并未就此了结,总有一天会有报应的。还有一些更胆小怕事的人,普遍怀有一种迷信的想法,认为凡是动过王常盈财物的人,难免有一天会死在王常盈儿子手里。

  村子里一时流言四起,人心浮动,说什么王常盈的儿子有一天半夜里溜回了村,与几个被他收买的人进行密谈。一天晚上,有人看见一个貌似地主儿子的人站在一家大门口,不由得惊叫起来。群众闻声纷纷从家里冲出来。那个家伙见势不妙,转身就跑,大伙儿紧跟在后面追赶,一气追出十里开外,结果还是让他给溜掉了。人们垂头丧气地回到村里,从此更加担惊受怕。

  After the struggle against the landlords, the cadres urged the village to organize a Farmers Association and then to elect officers from among the 155 members of whom thirty were women.

  Election day proved to be a gala event. The mountains had seen nothing like it in years and people gathered from neighboring villages in a holiday spirit. There had been long and heated discussion in the villages on just how the voting should take place. No one had ever voted before; most could not write. If voting were done by raising hands, there would be no dignity in the first election and it would not be secret. Therefore, it was decided to vote by putting beans in a bowl. Five officers were elected, among them Old Legality Ma, Liu Kwang and Second Jewel Pao. So, with the exception of the murdered Original Fortune Lee, every one of the four members who had attended the original secret meeting was elected.

  Shortly after this, the Revenge Corps of Warlord Yen Hsi-shan's army grew increasingly active in the Taiyueh Mountains. Around Stone Wall Village, this corps was composed mostly of landlords and a few of their bailiffs. Sometimes they hired soldiers to make private raids on the villages which had divided their land. At last they struck in the vicinity of Stone Wall Village.

  In Chaopeitsun, two miles away, a landlord named Tang Chi-yung and his brother, whose land the peasants had divided, leaving the brothers an equal share with themselves, had fled away to Yen Hsi-shan's area and joined the Revenge Corps. His wife, however, had remained in the village. One day, this wife learned that the village chief, the president of the Farmers Association and the leader of the local militia were holding a meeting about taxation in the village office and she ran away to her husband and told him of the meeting.

  Because they did not finish their work till late, the three officials decided to sleep in the office. In the middle of the night Landlord Tang and his brother at the head of fifty armed troops whom they had hired for the occasion returned to the village and bayoneted the cadres to death. The landlord and the soldiers then looted the village granary of all its grain and departed at dawn.

  As soon as Stone Wall Village heard the news of what had happened to its neighbor, the farmers called a meeting to discuss the situation. "We cannot all leave town," said a local cadre, "because the enemy is around. These men were killed because they did not post sentries. We must put sentries outside our village and place our cadres in a well-defended place."

  Because there was only one rifle in the village, the Farmers Association decided to appropriate forty piculs of wheat to buy nine rifles and some grenades from a near-by military factory which supplied guerrillas.

  These precautions were necessary, for the son of Landlord Wang had not forgotten his father's death and was lurking in the vicinity, looking for revenge. Everyone in the village was of one mind that he would return. They seemed to realize that they had begun an adventure that provoked a sequence, a development and, inexorably, a retribution. Among the more timid, there was a general superstition that anyone who had touched Landlord Wang's property would be sure to die at his son's hands.

  Sepulchral rumors floated about the village and it was said that the landlord's son returned in the middle of the night and talked with agents whom he had bribed. One night, a farmer saw a man that looked like Wang's son standing by a gate and he cried out in great alarm. The villagers rushed out of doors and the man took to his heels with the crowd in pursuit. After a chase of three miles, the people lost their quarry and returned home, frustrated and afraid.

  几天以后的一个晚上,王常盈的儿子果然率领了一百多名武装匪徒回到了石壁村。在他们未进村前,被村外放哨的民兵发现了,马上回村报告了敌情,顿时在村里引起了一阵骚动。人们急忙收拾好随身细软,撤进了村后的深山里,并把所有的骡马牲口连夜牵走了。甚至那些并未参加过斗争地主的人家,也带上粮食跟着大伙儿一起离开了村子。干部们手中的武器寥寥无几,难以抵御上百名的敌人,只好随群众一道撤退到山里。最后,全村人畜统统撤离一空。

  王常盈的儿子进了村,发现整个村子空空荡荡。想报杀父之仇,可是连个人影也找不着;要抢劫财物,更是连一点值钱的东西也没剩下。恼恨之下,他放起一把火将村里所有的房子都点着了。并把那些无法烧毁的窑洞的门窗拆下来,把窑洞内的家具搬出来,统统付之一炬。

  石壁村的群众默默地遥望着自己的家园被熊熊的烈火吞噬,偶而发出几声诅咒,同时暗自庆幸。“幸亏咱们有人放哨,要不,这下可就全完了。”地主的儿子和他带来的一帮匪军直到天明才离去。没等他们走远,群众就迫不急待地朝村里奔去,一进村马上担土挑水,设法扑灭仍在燃烧的火焰。火势终于被控制住,一家一家地逐渐熄灭了。人们没有哭泣,也没有哀号。那些住房完全被烧毁的人家,就暂时寄宿在左邻右舍。当天夜里,县里来的五位干部单独在一起开了一个会,在会上作出决定,今后要做好长期斗争的准备。这场斗争已经远远超出了翻身运动的范围,俨然是一场战争了。

  在此后短短一个月的时间内,石壁村附近几个村子里,就有十一人惨遭“还乡团”的毒手。由于在当时的情况下,尚无法调动八路军正规部队前来增援,同时地方游击队也转移到南边去了,县政府即向各村发出指示,要求他们自行组织民兵,在村内外加派岗哨。同时,县政府还从各村抽调了一百来人,组成一支县武装大队,直属县政府指挥。

  在这支武装力量的保护下,各村逐渐恢复了安宁。石壁村的翻身运动又继续开展起来。赋税减轻了,征收公粮由群众自报公议。村里的群众还推选了马英海担任新的村长。马英海是位四十岁上下的贫苦农民,过去贫无立锥之地,直到土改时才分得了九亩地。曾经被地主吊下井里的刘广,当上了村里的民兵队长。他的妻子也加入了妇女会。

  妇女的地位也起了很大的变化。在过去,不论白天黑夜,她们是不许参加任何会议的,天黑以后根本不许出门。而现在,不管是白天还是夜里,她们都能和男人们一起参加各种会议。但生儿育女还是个问题,或许翻身运动也能帮助她们解决这个难题。人们开始破除迷信,再也不去拜菩萨求狐仙,再也不相信一切都是命中注定的了。庙宇尚在,但已无人烧香了。人们说:“菩萨没有给咱们带来一点好处,可八路军给咱们带来的好处说也说不完。”那些逃亡的小地主也返回家园了。现在,他们以一个普通农民的身份自食其力。

  在地主王常盈家的大院里,现在办了一所学校。过去地主用来盘剥农民血汗的磨坊,现在已成了集体的财产,本村的群众去碾米磨面不取分文,对外村的用户收费也很低廉。这笔收入就作为农民协会的经费。

  A few nights later, Wang's son did in reality return. This time, he came at the head of a hundred armed men. Sentries stationed in the fields caught sight of them while they were still on the march and ran to warn the village which was thrown into pandemonium.

  Hastily packing their belongings, the people retired into the ravines back of the village. Cows, donkeys and horses were all led away in the dark. Even those who had not opposed the landlord took their grain with them. The cadres, because they had no adequate weapons to fight with a hundred armed men, retired with all the rest. Not a man nor an animal was left in Stone Wall Village.

  When Wang's son returned home, he found no man on whom to spend his revenge and no plunder to carry off. In anger, he set fire to all those houses which would burn. He could not burn the caves, so he smashed the wooden windows, carried out the furniture and threw it into the flames. The people looked at their homes going up in the fire, but they said little, only quietly cursing and once in a while murmuring: "We were lucky we had sentries or we would all be dead men by now." At dawn, Wang's son and his hired crew of soldiers left. When they were not far distant, the people rushed back to the village and began to throw earth and water on their still burning houses. One by one, the fires were brought under control and put out. There was little weeping and wailing. Those whose homes were too badly damaged to live in went to live with their neighbors. At night, the five county cadres held a private meeting of their own and decided they must make active preparations for a long armed struggle. This was more than an overturning movement; this was war.

  Within the next month, eleven people were killed in the near-by villages by marauding bands - bought soldiers, a few village leaders and the landlords in the Revenge Corps. The county government, unable to call on the regulars of the 8th Route Army and the guerrillas who had gone south, sent an open letter to every village to organize its own militia and put guards inside and outside the villages. In addition, volunteers came from the villages and formed a regular force of a hundred men that was at all times under command of the county.

  Gradually this force brought peace to the villages. In the meantime, Stone Wall Village continued to "turn over." Taxes were lightened and the people themselves voted the amount of grain to be collected. The village elected as its new chief a forty-year-old farmer named Ma Ying-hai, who formerly had owned no land of his own, but who had acquired an acre and a half during the land division. Liu Kwang, who had been put down a well by Landlord Wang, became head of the village militia. His wife joined the Women's Association.

  The position of women changed greatly. Before, they could not participate in day or night meetings or be seen on the Street after dark. Now they participated in meetings with men, day or night. There was not yet time for them to give birth to many children, but maybe the overturning movement would take care of that, too.

  The people began to cast aside their superstitions, no longer believed in ghosts, fox goddesses or a fate unalterable. The temples remained untouched but no one visited them. The people said: "The Gods brought us no luck, but the 8th Route Army has brought us much luck."
Now the small landlords who fled away have come back and are working their land like common farmers.

  The great house of Landlord Wang has been turned into a school. His mill which used to charge the villagers exorbitant prices to grind their grain has, become the property of the whole village. Grain is ground free for all local people. Outsiders can use the mill by paying a nominal price. The money goes to pay the expenses of the Farmers Association.