Lyrics to the Linjiang Narcissi
- Poetry of Chao Chongzhi


- Last updated: 2024-06-14 10:44:45

Lyrics to the Linjiang Narcissi by Chao Chongzhi





English Translation

Recollections of the West Pond come to me, how we drank in the pond,

Year after year, how we had many a joyful moment.

Since our parting, you have not so much as sent my way a note,

When we do come across each other on occasions,

I cannot even sense goodwill that a new acquaintance usually holds.

I've prepared a bed of embroidered quilt hoping for a good night's dream,

So as to allow me to the rivers and lakes cross.

In my wistfulness how could I consider where it would lead me towards?

For I know once spring has gone,

There is no one to prevent blossoms from drifting to their fall.

By Chao Chongzhi

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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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