Song of Sunset on the River
- Poetry of Bai Juyi

《暮江吟》

- Last updated: 2024-03-19 13:19:33

Song of Sunset on the River by Bai Juyi
中文原文

一道残阳铺水中,半江瑟瑟半江红。

可怜九月初三夜,露似真珠月似弓。

Song of Sunset on the River

English Translation

A strip of water's spread in the setting sun,

Half the river's emerald, half is red.

I love the third night of the ninth month,

The dew is like pearl; the moon like a bow.

By Bai Juyi

Why Chinese poems is so special?
The most distinctive features of Chinese poetry are: concision- many poems are only four lines, and few are much longer than eight; ambiguity- number, tense and parts of speech are often undetermined, creating particularly rich interpretative possibilities; and structure- most poems follow quite strict formal patterns which have beauty in themselves as well as highlighting meaningful contrasts.
How to read a Chinese poem?
Like an English poem, but more so. Everything is there for a reason, so try to find that reason. Think about all the possible connotations, and be aware of the different possibilities of number and tense. Look for contrasts: within lines, between the lines of each couplet and between successive couplets. Above all, don't worry about what the poet meant- find your meaning.

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