Autumn Song, 1 of 2
- Poetry of Liu Yuxi

《秋词(其一)》

- Last updated: 2024-03-16 15:22:24

Autumn Song, 1 of 2 by Liu Yuxi
中文原文

自古逢秋悲寂寥,我言秋日胜春朝。

晴空一鹤排云上,便引诗情到碧霄。


English Translation

As of old when autumn falls, themes forlorn we bemoan;

But I say the autumn day excels any spring morn known.

Flapping skywards, a crane, past clouds white in the sun,

O how my muse of poesy to the heavens azure has flown.

Translated by Andrew W.F. Wong (Huang Hongfa)

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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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