Apricot flowers haven't faded all
- Poetry of Su Shi


- Last updated: 2024-03-23 17:17:16

Apricot flowers haven't faded all by Su Shi








English Translation

Apricot flowers haven't faded all,

when the swallows fly up,

the clear stream winds around vill.

Catkins of the willow become less,

don't worry,grass grew everywhere.

The spring won't leave us behind.

Behind the wall,a girl plays on a swing

and smiles loudly like a fay.

I quietly listen and drink in.

Gradually the sound of her smiles fades away,

only i'm still immersed in the vision

of taking her to go for a spring outing.

This lyric is supposed to have been written while the poet was banished to Hainan Island,southermost part of the Song territory. The first stanza describes the departing spring and the second depicts the sorrow of a wayfarer far from home.

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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