Autumn in the Capital
- Poetry of Du Mu

《长安秋望》

- Last updated: 2024-04-12 09:28:29

Autumn in the Capital by Du Mu
中文原文

楼倚霜树外,镜天无一毫。

南山与秋色,气势两相高。


English Translation

The tower overlooks frosty trees;

Speckless is the mirror-like sky.

The South Mountain and autumn breeze;

Vie to be more sublime and high.

By Du Mu

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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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