Once when I was six years old I saw a magnificentpicture in a book, called True Stories from Nature, about the primevalforest. It was a picture of a boa constrictor in the act of swallowing an animal. Here is a copy of the drawing.
I pondered deeply, then, over the adventures of the jungle. And after some work with a colored pencil I succeeded in making my first drawing. My Drawing Number One. It looked like this: 当时，我对丛林中的奇遇想得很多，于是，我也用彩色铅笔画出了我的第一副图画。我的第一号作品。它是这样的：
小编注：以上段落中大家可以注意到这句话：“I pondered deeply, then, over the adventures of the jungle.”别看句子长，先把核心词组提炼出来：“ponder over……”，也就是“考虑、思索某事”的意思，中间夹杂的“deeply”、“then”都起的只是修饰作用，整个句子的意思也就是“那时我对丛林冒险的想法很多”。
I showed my masterpiece to the grown-ups, and asked them whether the drawing frightened them.
But they answered: "Frighten? Why should any one be frightened by a hat?"
My drawing was not a picture of a hat. It was a picture of a boa constrictor digesting an elephant. But since the grown-ups were not able to understand it, I made another drawing: I drew the inside of the boa constrictor, so that the grown-ups could see it clearly. They always need to have things explained. My Drawing Number Two looked like this:
当小作者得意洋洋的把自己的大作给大人看时，却不以为然，无法感悟出小作者画画的内在，单纯的把他的画当做是一顶帽子，所以小作者感到很无奈，说了一句“They always need to have things explained.”这句话中涉及一个常用词组“have sth done”，一般用法可以归纳为：
have sth done的三种用法：
We had the machine repaired.（我们请人把机器修好了）
I had my watch stolen last night. 昨晚我的手表被偷了）
在文中，“have things explained”可以归在方法一中，也就是说“大人总是不自己思考，需要别人来给他们解释”。
The grown-ups' response, this time, was to advise me to lay aside my drawings of boa constrictors, whether from the inside or the outside, and devote myself instead to geography, history, arithmetic and grammar. That is why, at the age of six, I gave up what might have been a magnificent career as a painter. I had been disheartened by the failure of my Drawing Number One and my Drawing Number Two. Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them.
So then I chose another profession, and learned to pilot airplanes. I have flown a little over all parts of the world; and it is true that geography has been very useful to me. At a glance I can distinguish China from Arizona. If one gets lost in the night, such knowledge is valuable.
In the course of this life I have had a great many encounters with a great many people who have been concerned with matters of consequence. I have lived a great deal among grown-ups. I have seen them intimately, close at hand. And that hasn't much improved my opinion of them.
Whenever I met one of them who seemed to me at all clear-sighted, I tried the experiment of showing him my Drawing Number One, which I have always kept. I would try to find out, so, if this was a person of true understanding. But, whoever it was, he, or she, would always say:
Then I would never talk to that person about boa constrictors, or primeval forests, or stars. I would bring myself down to his level. I would talk to him about bridge, and golf, and politics, and neckties. And the grown-up would be greatly pleased to have met such a sensible man.
小作者把自己的画给家长看，并没有得到期望的赞许，并且，家长们都劝他把心思都放到正途上来，他们劝他“devote myself instead to geography, history, arithmetic and grammar”，其中“devote oneself to sth”是一个惯用短语，用到了反身代词，意思是“专心于……、献身于……”，大人都觉得小作者这样画画是不务正业，所以都让他把心思放在地理、历史等有用的学科学习上去~
“In the course of this life I have had a great many encounters with a great many people who have been concerned with matters of consequence.”这一段落有些难度，句子普遍比较长，大家可以分解开来看，并且把难的词换成简单的词。这一句可以分解为①“In the course of this life, I have had a great many encounters with(=met) a great many people."+②“They have been concerned with matters of consequence(important things)."这样意思就不难理解了，也就是“我这一生中，遇到了很多很多的人，他们一直都关心着一些重要的事情”。
作者说他在大人中间生活，并且仔细地观察他们，这里用到的“仔细地”，并没有单纯用“carefully”这样的单词，而是用到了两个不错的表达方式——“intimately（熟悉地）”和“close at hand”，前者我就不多说了，这里“close at hand”还是很精彩的，通过这样的表达，你可以想想作者的观察是怎样的一种观察呢？已经细致到了把大人一个个的捧在手心，这样仔细的端倪着~
但是通过作者的观察，也无法让作者对于大人的想法有丝毫的改观，这里文中用到了一个不错的表达，大家可以注意一下哦：“That hasn't much improved my opinion of them.”
面对想象力缺乏的成年人，作者提到自己不得不屈身迁就他们，这里说到“I would bring myself down to his level.”意思是说“我只能把自己也降到这个水平”，唉，只叹高处不胜寒，阳春白雪的事儿毕竟不是人人都知道的~