倘若将张爱玲的求学与从文经历，放在较深广一些的时空维度去审视，就不难发现圣玛利亚女校（St. Mary's Hall，简称“圣校”）的重要性。1931年，十一岁的张爱玲进入圣公会所办圣玛利亚女校，被分入初中一乙组（Class Section B），直到1937年高三毕业，张爱玲生命中整整六年的光阴，便在此度过。当人们被好奇心驱使，去窥看《凤藻》（The Phoenix）年刊中的集体照，混杂在同学们中间的张爱玲，形同安徒生童话里的丑小鸭，身材瘦弱，貌不惊人。也许普通读者的脑海里会冒出这样的念头来：若不是日后在文坛声名鹊起，恐怕很少会有人对她多加留意吧。事实上，高中时期的张爱玲已经在文学领域崭露头角了。据张爱玲读高二时赴“圣校”任教务部主任的汪宏声回忆，为了平衡此前偏重英文教学的弊端，圣校才开始大力加强和推进国文课程教学。汪老师给学生们布置了国文作文和影评，并创办《国光》月刊，张爱玲便是杂志社的编辑兼积极撰稿者。汪的回忆，还从侧面透露出张爱玲的英文素养的养成，并不晚于国文素养，两者几乎齐头并进。
最近，当翻阅2014年第一期《档案春秋》，其中徐如林的文章《凤栖于梧：张爱玲的中学时代》，引起了笔者的关注，因为该文披露了一篇此前无人知晓的英文习作The Sun Parlor（徐文译作《太阳房》），载于1936年《凤藻》年刊（第102页）。受其启发，笔者更在上海图书馆近代期刊馆藏中，找到另外两篇张爱玲写于1937年的英文习作，篇名分别为“The School Rats Have a Party”和“A Dream on the Journey”（姑译成《校鼠舞会》和《书旅一梦》）。由于馆藏纸质版有破损，经合理推断，其出处应当也都是1936年《凤藻》年刊，为方便引用，其页码分别为第48页、第72-74页。
文学史上，好多作家成名后，常悔其少作。张爱玲不仅并不例外，而且对于少作被挖掘“出土”，深恶痛绝。此前，陈子善先生从1937年《凤藻》年刊中，找到并中译过两篇张爱玲的英文习作，分别是“My Great Expectations”（《心愿》）和“Sketches of Some Shepherds”（《牧羊者素描》）。但据宋以朗先生《张爱玲没有写的文章》（载《南方都市报》2013.7.9）引1990年张爱玲给其父的信，称：“中国时报转载校刊上我最讨厌的一篇英文作文，一看都没看就扔了……”态度之决绝，简直令人瞠目结舌。这也使笔者一开始不无顾虑，但考虑到这些毕竟是“祖师奶奶”文学生涯起步期难得的佳构，虽然会被认作钱锺书所说的发掘文墓的考订家，可我自信它们对热爱张爱玲的读者、研究张爱玲的学者来说，不会没有意义。至少能丰富大家对张爱玲早期阅读史的了解，以及加深对其英文虚构能力的认知。而所有这些新增的样本，如能引发更多热议，则善莫大焉。
The Sun Parlor
My favourite spot in St. Mary's Hall is the Sun Parlor. It gives me the same impression as its name; a warm, bright room constantly filled with sunshine. It is a rectangular room. The walls are painted in white, but the lower half of them is hidden behind a cover of black wood. In the middle of the room there is a long black table, and around it are many chairs. These are prepared for the girls to have a chance for reading newspapers. In one corner of the room there is a wooden box placed on the shelf. This belongs to the Phoenix Broad, and every girl has the privilege of putting her own themes in it. The box is locked, and we always dream of how we would open this mysterious box and see the things within. On the wall there hang many interesting pictures and records that attract girls' attention every time they pass the Sun Parlor. The room is very bright, because one side of it faces the big glass door that leads to the school gate, and one side of it is composed of three glass doors which face the school garden. Sunlight can reach the room in both directions. When we stand before the glass door, we can see the whole view of our lovely school garden. In winter afternoons, when the pale yellow sunlight lies lazily on the stone ground, we sit beside the steam heaters, with newspapers in our hands. We feel nice and warm and pleasant, and thoroughly enjoy the charm of the "Sun Parlor".
TSANG AI-LING, 1937
The School Rats Have a Party
In our school there is a beautiful lady rat named Miss Black. She is very stylish and famous, so that all the rats know her. She married a great gentleman named Mr. Brown on Saturday. That night they were very happy, all their friends and relatives came to the party. Miss Black wore a pretty long dress，and a white long veil on her head. It made her black face and body more black. Mr. Brown has two little brown eyes, and little black whiskers. When their wedding was finished, they gave a feast and danced and sang. The guests and ladies danced with their little boots and little high heeled shoes as loudly as they could, but no student heard it, because it was midnight and they were fast asleep.
Next morning, I rose very early and went down the stairs to take a walk. When I passed the doorway, suddenly I heard a noisy voice, then I peeked in at the door. When I saw the happy party, how surprised I was! I cried, "See! See! The rats have a party!" Maybe my voice was too loud for the rats all stood up and took their feast and quickly ran to their home.
TSANG AI-LING, 1937
A Dream on the Journey
It was a night before our literature test. I sat in the study hall, with my book opened before me. I tried to read, but I heard the noisy music and tap dancing steps which I had seen last week in a movie. There seemed to be many beautiful dancers waving their handkerchiefs and winking their eyes at me. Under these noisy sounds and flashing scenes, the words in my book slipped away so smoothly and quickly, before I could catch them and keep them in my brain. I turned over the page and tried another paragraph. The same things went on, and still I could not control myself. I got very tired and weary. So I leaned on the desk and went to sleep, forgetting all about our literature test.
I walked into a mysterious wonderland, the wonderland that "Alice" had not gone in. I was sitting beside a dining table, having a tea-party with Ali Baba and his wife, and Morgianna, who had been once a slave and was now his daughter-in-law. On the other end of the table sat a graceful, mild, fair-haired, grand lady. A golden crown was set upon her head. She was Queen Esther, as Ali Baba told me, the most powerful and kind lady in this land. Then I heard a knock on the door; Ali Baba told me that it must be the other guests invited. Morgianna ran and open the door, and a gigantic, tremendous, white-bearded old man walked in, with a little girl leaning on his arm.
"Hello，Miss Ai-ling, you don't recognize me now, eh? We met three and a half years ago, on the Alps--"
"You're the Alm Uncle!" I cried out before he had finished his speech. I held out my hand earnestly, and we greeted each other happily.
"Here's Heidi. Does she look fatter and taller than before?" He showed me the child. Heidi was still a healthy and innocent little girl. She told me that the "Old grandmother" was still alive, and had white bread to eat every day.
We sat down and began our eating. Suddenly, a sharp voice calling "Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!" was heard. Then we heard heavy foot-steps; a sea-faring man with a wooden leg came in, with a parrot standing on his shoulder.
"Excuse my interruption, Your Majesty. May I join the party?" Long John Silver bowed gracefully to the queen. And Queen Esther nodded her head and smiled sweetly-she was always so sweet and gentle, even to a pirate. So Long John took his seat and joined our party. I was a little afraid of him, when I thought about his killing people in Treasure Island. But Morgianna and Alm Uncle were all very calm, even Heidi, the child. So I felt ashamed of myself.
In the midst of our eating I saw a pretty face peeping in at the door. The big, glorious, black eyes recalled someone to me. I suddenly sprang to my feet and rushed to the door, holding her hand and screaming.
"Oh, Rebecca Randall! Is it really you-oh, I have longed for you!"
It was really Rebecca, the one I loved best among those friends. We held together both with tears in our eyes. The first question I eagerly asked her was:
"How about Mr. Aladdin? Did you-" I meant "Did you marry him?" but I stopped in the middle.
There was no reply. Rebecca blushed, smiled, lowered her head, and began to hum a love song.
During this time I hadn't mentioned that Aunt Miranda was just now coming in after Rebecca. She stared at me, then turned to the rest of the people. When she saw Long John and Morgianna, she pulled her face very long and made her eyes perfectly round, and screamed.
"Dear! Dear! Sea-robber-and slave! Inviting us Sawyers to the party with sea-robbers and slaves! Oh my, I'm fainting!....Rebecca, button up your coat, put on your hat and stop laughing and crying like a three-year-old child! We must leave here as quickly as possible."
She pulled Rebecca hard out of the room. Ali Baba and his wife looked puzzled. Long John was trying to hide his angriness and laughed unnaturally. Morgianna was still so white and calm, only moving her lips a little; she seemed to be trying to say something. Heidi did not know what had happened. She looked at Long John, looked at Aunt Miranda, and then turned to her grandfather.
When Aunt Miranda was pulling Rebecca, a funny little old man darted in at the door and ran hard against Aunt Miranda. They both fell on the ground. Aunt Miranda grumbled, "All of the men in this house are as rude as rubbers." She rose up and disappeared with Rebecca through the door.
The little old man stood confused and panting. Ali Baba asked him, "Mr. Rip Van Winkle, are you driven out by Dame Van Winkle again?" Rip Van Winkle shrugged his shoulders, cast up his eyes, and said nothing.
Just then, there was a bell tinkling far away. "It must be our friend, 'The King of the Golden River'. He has come to take us to the feast of Xerxes, the Persian king. I think we had better say good-bye", said Ali Baba to me. So they sang a song to bid farewell to me. I can only remember the chorus, “Oh, we wish you may have a good mark tomorrow, tomorrow!…………” The song got softer and softer, and at last I could not hear it. I opened my eyes and found myself still sitting in the study hall. My book had already dropped on the floor. The bell was ringing, and students were going out one by one. I picked up the book, rubbed my eyes, and read it while I was going out. I found it very interesting so that I could not stop reading. There seemed to be lovely scenes with all those people I had seen in the dream acting in them. I held my book tightly and cried, "A thousand thanks to the people in our wonderland!"
TSANG AI-LING, 1937