Down Zhongnan Mountain to the Kind Pillow and Bowl of Husi
- Poetry of Li Bai (Li Po)


- Last updated: 2024-04-18 23:32:47

Down Zhongnan Mountain to the Kind Pillow and Bowl of Husi by Li Bai (Li Po)

暮从碧山下, 山月随人归;

却顾所來径, 苍苍横翠微。

相携及田家, 童稚开荆扉;

綠竹入幽径, 青蘿拂行衣。

欢言得所憩, 美酒聊共挥;

长歌吟松风, 曲尽河星稀。

我醉君復樂, 陶然共忘机。

English Translation

Down the blue mountain in the evening,

Moonlight was my homeward escort.

Looking back, I saw my path

Lie in levels of deep shadow....

I was passing the farm-house of a friend,

When his children called from a gate of thorn

And led me twining through jade bamboos

Where green vines caught and held my clothes.

And I was glad of a chance to rest

And glad of a chance to drink with my friend....

We sang to the tune of the wind in the pines;

And we finished our songs as the stars went down,

When, I being drunk and my friend more than happy,

Between us we forgot the world.


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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