Sighs of Autumn Rain (1)
- Poetry of Du Fu

《秋雨叹三首 (一)》

- Last updated: 2024-03-25 10:23:55

Sighs of Autumn Rain (1) by Du Fu
中文原文

雨中百草秋烂死,阶下决明颜色鲜。

著叶满枝翠羽盖,开花无数黄金钱。

凉风萧萧吹汝急,恐汝后时难独立。

堂上书生空白头,临风三嗅馨香泣。


English Translation

In autumn rain, the grasses rot and die,

Below the steps, the jueming's colour is fresh.

Full green leaves cover the stems like feathers,

And countless flowers bloom like golden coins.

The cold wind, moaning, blows against you fiercely,

I fear that soon you'll find it hard to stand.

Upstairs the scholar lets down his white hair,

He faces the wind, breathes the fragrance, and weeps.

By Du Fu

· PreOn the Lake
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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