I laid on the glass pillow
- Poetry of Wen Tingyun

《菩萨蛮》

- Last updated: 2024-03-21 19:58:50

I laid on the glass pillow by Wen Tingyun
中文原文

水精帘里颇黎枕,暖香惹梦鸳鸯锦。

江上柳如烟,雁飞残月天。

藕丝秋色浅,人胜参差剪。

双鬓隔香红,玉钗头上风。


English Translation

I laid on the glass pillow,spring comes here.

incense burned and lured me to dream of you.

Those willow leaves were like mist on the river,

wild geese flew over the moonshiny night.


Silky coat with hue of the fading cherry,

wind breezes those little grass like a scissor.

Among the cherry flowers,have you seen me?

Blonde hairs with the blue of the March's mint.

By Wen Tingyun

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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