A Palace Poem
- Poetry of Gu Kuang


- Last updated: 2024-05-14 21:18:25

A Palace Poem by Gu Kuang



English Translation

High above, from a jade chamber, songs float half-way to heaven,

The palace-girls' gay voices are mingled with the wind --

But now they are still, and you hear a water-clock drip in the Court of the Moon....

They have opened the curtain wide, they are facing the River of Stars.


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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