A Farewell to Han Shen at the Yunyang Inn
- Poetry of Sikong Shu


- Last updated: 2024-05-04 11:48:22

A Farewell to Han Shen at the Yunyang Inn by Sikong Shu





English Translation

Long divided by river and sea,

For years we two have failed to meet --

And suddenly to find you seems like a dream....

With a catch in the throat, we ask how old we are.

...Our single lamp shines, through cold and wet,

On a bamboo- thicket sheathed in rain;

But forgetting the sadness that will come with tomorrow,

Let us share the comfort of this farewell wine.


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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