Spring Night
- Poetry of Su Shi

《春夜》

- Last updated: 2024-03-22 18:21:31

Spring Night by Su Shi
中文原文

春宵一刻值千金,花有清香月有阴。

歌管楼台声细细,秋千院落夜沉沉。


English Translation

A moment of spring night is worth its length of gold, When flowers spread on moonlight and shade fragrance cold.

The slender flute from the bower plays music slender; The tender night on garden swing casts shadow tender.

By Su Shi

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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