Heaven's Aspect, the Water's Colour (Picking Mulberries)
- Poetry of Ouyang Xiu


- Last updated: 2024-03-24 17:04:41

Heaven's Aspect, the Water's Colour (Picking Mulberries) by Ouyang Xiu






English Translation

Heaven's aspect, the water's colour- West Lake is good.

Creatures in the clouds all fresh,

Gulls and egrets idly sleep,

I follow my habit as of old, listen to pipes and strings.

The wind is clear, the moon is white, the night is almost perfect.

One piece of beautiful land,

Who would crave a steed or phoenix?

One man on his boat is just like an immortal.

By Ouyang Xiu

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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