When Lu Lun My Cousin Comes for the Night
- Poetry of Sikong Shu


- Last updated: 2024-05-04 11:49:47

When Lu Lun My Cousin Comes for the Night by Sikong Shu





English Translation

With no other neighbour but the quiet night,

Here I live in the same old cottage;

And as raindrops brighten yellow leaves,

The lamp illumines my white head....

Out of the world these many years,

I am ashamed to receive you here.

But you cannot come too often,

More than brother, lifelong friend.


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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