A Song of Lu Mountain to Censor Lu Xuzhou
- Poetry of Li Bai (Li Po)

《庐山谣寄卢侍御虚舟》

- Last updated: 2023-12-22 11:19:45

A Song of Lu Mountain to Censor Lu Xuzhou by Li Bai (Li Po)
中文原文

我本楚狂人,凤歌笑孔丘。

手持绿玉杖,朝别黄鹤楼。

五岳寻仙不辞远,一生好入名山游。

庐山秀出南斗傍,屏风九叠云锦张,影落明湖青黛光。

金阙前开二峰长,银河倒挂三石梁,香炉瀑布遥相望,回崖沓嶂凌苍苍。

翠影红霞映朝日,鸟飞不到吴天长。

登高壮观天地间,大江茫茫去不还。

黄云万里动风色,白波九道流雪山。

好为庐山谣,兴因庐山发。

闲窥石镜清我心,谢公行处苍苔没。

早服还丹无世情,琴心三叠道初成。

遥见仙人彩云里,手把芙蓉朝玉京。

先期汗漫九垓上,愿接卢敖游太清。


English Translation

I am the madman of the Chu country

Who sang a mad song disputing Confucius.

...Holding in my hand a staff of green jade,

I have crossed, since morning at the Yellow Crane Terrace,

All five Holy Mountains, without a thought of distance,

According to the one constant habit of my life.

Lu Mountain stands beside the Southern Dipper

In clouds reaching silken like a nine-panelled screen,

With its shadows in a crystal lake deepening the green water.

The Golden Gate opens into two mountain-ranges.

A silver stream is hanging down to three stone bridges

Within sight of the mighty Tripod Falls.

Ledges of cliff and winding trails lead to blue sky

And a flush of cloud in the morning sun,

Whence no flight of birds could be blown into Wu.

...I climb to the top. I survey the whole world.

I see the long river that runs beyond return,

Yellow clouds that winds have driven hundreds of miles

And a snow-peak whitely circled by the swirl of a ninefold stream.

And so I am singing a song of Lu Mountain,

A song that is born of the breath of Lu Mountain.

...Where the Stone Mirror makes the heart's purity purer

And green moss has buried the footsteps of Xie,

I have eaten the immortal pellet and, rid of the world's troubles,

Before the lute's third playing have achieved my element.

Far away I watch the angels riding coloured clouds

Toward heaven's Jade City, with hibiscus in their hands.

And so, when I have traversed the nine sections of the world,

I will follow Saint Luao up the Great Purity.

Seven-character-ancient-verse

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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