Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Bamboo and Plum Blossom
Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Monday, August 29, 2016

Liu Yu Hsi (772-842)



HILLS surround the ancient kingdom; they never change.
The tide beats against the empty city, and silently, silently, returns.
To the East, over the Huai River – the ancient moon.
Through the long, quiet night it moves, crossing the battlemented wall.

Po Chu-I (772-846)



THE sun rose while I slept. I had not yet risen 132
When I heard an early oriole above the roof of my house.
Suddenly it was like the Royal Park at dawn,
With birds calling from the branches of the ten-thousand-year trees.
I thought of my time as a Court Official
When I was meticulous with my pencil in the Audience Hall.
At the height of Spring, in occasional moments of leisure,
I would look at the grass and growing things,
And at dawn and at dusk I would hear this sound.
Where do I hear it now?
In the lonely solitude of the City of Hsün Yang.
The bird's song is certainly the same,
The change is in the emotions of the man.
If I could only stop thinking that I am at the ends of the earth,
I wonder, would it be so different from the Palace after all?

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Sun Buer (1119-1182)

Refining the Spirit

The relic from before birth
Enters one’s heart one day.
Be as careful as if you were holding a full vessel,
Be as gentle as if you were caressing an infant.
The gate of earth should be shut tight,
The portals of heaven should be first opened.
Wash the yellow sprouts clean,
And atop the mountain is thunder shaking the earth.

Sun Buer (1119-1182)

Cutting Brambles

Cut brambles long enough,
Sprout after sprout,
And the lotus will bloom
Of its own accord:
Already waiting in the clearing,
The single image of light.
The day you see this,
That day you will become it.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Wang Changling (698-765)

Wang Changling
Under a Border-fortress
Drink, my horse, while we cross the autumn water!-
The stream is cold and the wind like a sword,
As we watch against the sunset on the sandy plain,
Far, far away, shadowy Lingtao.
Old battles, waged by those long walls,
Once were proud on all men's tongues.
But antiquity now is a yellow dust,
Confusing in the grasses its ruins and white bones.

Zhang Jiuling (b.678)

Zhang JiulingOrchid and Orange I
Tender orchid-leaves in spring
And cinnamon- blossoms bright in autumn
Are as self- contained as life is,
Which conforms them to the seasons.
Yet why will you think that a forest-hermit,
Allured by sweet winds and contented with beauty,
Would no more ask to-be transplanted
THan Would any other natural flower?

Monday, August 8, 2016

Lao Tzu (d.531BC)

“At the center of your being you have the answer;
you know who you are
and you know what you want.”

Wang Wei (669-701)

Farewell (II)
Wang Wei

We bid each other farewell beside the hill,
As day meets dusk, I close the wooden gate.
Next year, in spring, there will be green grass again,
But will my honoured friend return?

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Du Fu (712-770)

Spring View
Du Fu

The country is broken, though hills and rivers remain,
In the city in spring, grass and trees are thick.
Moved by the moment, a flower's splashed with tears,
Mourning parting, a bird startles the heart.
The beacon fires have joined for three months now,
Family letters are worth ten thousand pieces.
I scratch my head, its white hairs growing thinner,
And barely able now to hold a hairpin.

Tao Qian (365-427)

Returning to Live in the South (II) Tao Qian

I sow my beans below the southern hills,
Though grasses flourish, the sprouting beans are scarce.
I rise at dawn to clear the wasteland up,
Beneath the moon I carry back my hoe.
The path is narrow, the trees and grass grown tall,
My clothes are dampened by the evening dew.
Yet dampened clothes are nothing to begrudge,
If only my desires can be fulfilled.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Su Shi (1036-1101)

A Painting Of A Rural Marriage Scene, Two Quatrains, No. 2
Owned By Chen Jichang  

Su Shi 1036-1101 
I myself am Zhuchen's
        former prefect,
To encourage agriculture
        once I went to Apricot Blossom.
But the scene there today,
        who could bear to paint it?
County bailiffs demanding taxes
        bang on doors at midnight.