Listening to the Rain
- Poetry of Lu You

《闻雨》

- Last updated: 2024-04-12 09:33:34

Listening to the Rain by Lu You
中文原文

慷慨心犹壮,蹉跎鬓已秋。

百年殊鼎鼎,万事只悠悠。

不悟鱼千里,终归貉一丘。

夜阑闻急雨,起坐涕交流。


English Translation

My heart is stout as in the days gone by,

Yet fleeting time has silvered my sparse hair;

Life's little span is quickly past,

But will no end be made to men's distress?

Why must a fish, eager to travel far,

Perish at last like foxes in one burrow?

Late at night, listening to the pelting rain,

I sit up and my face is bathed in tears.

By Lu You

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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