ONE HUNDRED QUATRAINS BY THE TANG POETS

Compiled by Lv Shuxiang



(1) THE DEBAUCH

by Wang Ji

Fill up day the sorrow-drugging bowl!
What matter though we dromn the brighter soul?
With wine o`ercome when all our fellows be,
Can I alone sit in sobriety?

--Fletcher


(2) EHEU FUGACES

by Wei Chengqing

Mournfully,mournfully rolls the Long River.
Saddened, ah saddened, the stranger`s breast.
The flowers as they fall his fste recall,
As each flutters down in the earth to rest.

--Fletcher.


(3) ABSENCE

by Zhong Yue

My eagerness chases the sun and the moon,
I number the days till I reach my home.
The winds of autumn they wait not for me,
But hurry on thither where I would be.

--Fletcher.


(4) AN ABSENT HUSBAND

by Zhang JiuLing

Since my lord left-ah me, unhappy hour!--
The half-spun web hangs idly in my bower;
My heart is like the full moon, full of pains,
Save that`tis always full and never wanes.

--Giles


(5) COMING HOME

by He Zhizhang

I left home yong. I return old,
Speaking as then, but with hair grown thin;
And my children, meeting me, do not know me.
They smile and say:Stranger, where do you come from?"

--Bynner


(6) FALLAX PUER

By Cui Guofu

The golden steps, ah! I had swept so clean!
The frost I brushed away was white as snow.
He came not,To my room I entering
The curtains drew, and touched the lute`s sweet string.
To see the autumn moon were double woe!

--Fletcher.


(7) OVVERLOOKED

By Wang Wei

Beneath the bamboo grove, alone
I seize my lute and sit and croon;
No ear to hear me, save mine own;
No eye to see me, save the moon.

--Giles


(8) TO-DAY
By Wang Wei

I had lately removed back to near Mengcheng Valley:
A few ancient trees,some waste willows were left.
But he who comes after me, what will he find here?
Why yearn for the glories the years have bereft?

--Fletcher


(9) A PARTING

By Wang Wei

Friend,I have watched you down the mountain
Till now in the dark I close my thatch door...
Grasses return again green in the spring,
But o my Prince of Friends, do you?

--Bynner


(10) LOVE SEEDS

By wang Wei

The red bean grows in southern lands.
With spring its slender tendriks twine.
Gather for me some more, I pray,
Of fond remembrance`tis the sign.

--Fletcher


(11) WHERE I WAS BORN

By Wang Wei

Oh,sir,from the place of my youth are you come,
The things of our village for sure you must know.
Still peeps the sun through my gauze window at home?
The early plum blossom, oh! yet dose it blow?

--Fletcher


(12) FLOWER LORE

By Wang Wei

Dost womder if my toilet room be shut?
If in the regal hall we meet no more?
I ever haunt the Garden of the Spring?
From smiling flowers to learn their whispered lore.

--Fletcher


(13) WHILE ROSES FALL

By Wang Wei

Dawn after dawn the last doth nearer bring.
Ah! what avails the shy return of spring?
Then fill the wine-cup of to-day and let
Night and the roses fall,while we forget.

--Cranmer-Byng


(14) A SONG OF AN AUTUMN NIGHT

By Wang Wei

Under the crescent moon a light autumn dew
Has chilled the robe she will not change----
And she touches a silver lute all night,
Afraid to go back to her empty room.

--Bynner


(15) A SONG AT WEICHENG

By Wang Wei

A morning rain has settled the dust in Weicheng;
Willows are green again in the tavern dooryard...
Wait till we empty one more cup--
West of Yang Gate there`ll be no old friends.

--Bynner


(16) ON THE MOUNTAIN HOLIDAY

By Wang Wei

All alone in a foreign land,
I an twice as homesick on this day,
When brothers carry dogwood up the mountain,
Each of them a branch-and my branch missing.

--Bynner


(17-18) A SONG OF CHANGGAN

By Cui Hao

(1)

"Tell me where do you live?--
Near here, by the fishing-pool?
Let`s hold our boats together,let`s see
If we belong in the same town."

(2)

"Yes I live here by the river;
I have sailed on it many and many a time.
Both of us born in Changgan,you and I!
Why haven`t we always known each other?"

--Bynner


(19) AT THE WARS

By Wang Changling

See the young wife whose bosom ne`er
has ached with cruel pain!--
In gay array she mounts the tower
when spring comes round again.
Sudden she sees the willow trees
their newest green put on,
And sighs for her husband far away
in search of glory gone.

--Giles


(20) THE NEGLECTED BEAUTY

By Wang Changling

Than colours of the peony
my raiment is more fair.
The breeze across the palace lake
takes fragrance from my hair.
My love is hidden in my breast,
a fan conceals my pain.
A clear moon in an autumn night,
I wait my Lord in vain.

--Fletcher


(21) OVER THE BORDER

By Wang Changling

The moon goes back to the time of Qin.the
Wall to the time of Han.
And the road our troops are travelling goes
back three hundred miles--.
Oh, for the winged General at the Dragon City--
That never a Tartar horseman might ceoss the
Ying Mountain.

--Bynner


(22) ON PARTING WITH THE BUDDHIST PILGRIM LINGCHE

By Liu Changqing

From the temple, deep in its tender bamboos,
Comes the low sound of an evening bell,
While the har of a pilgrim carries the sunset
Farther and farther down the green mountain.

--Bynner


(23) A REASON FAIR

By Wang Han

"Tis night: the grape-juice mantles high
in cups of gold galore;
We set to drink,-but now the bugle
sounds to horse once more.
Oh, marvel not if drunken we
lie strewed about the plain;
How few of all who seek the fight
shall e`er come bank again!

--Giles


(24) A spring morning

By Meng Haoran

I awake light-hearted this morning of spring,
Evrrywhere round me the singing of birds--
But now I remember the night, the storm,
And I wonder how many blossoms were broken.

--Bynner


(25) A NIGHT-MOORING ON THE JIANDE RIVER

By Meng Haoqan

While my little boat moves on its mooring of mist,
And daylight wanes,old memories begin...
How wide the world was, how close the trees
to heaven,
And how clear in the water the nearness of the moon!


(26) IN THE QUIET NIGHT

by Li Bai

So bright a gleam on the my bed--
Could there have been a frost already?
Lifting myself to look,I found that it wes moonlight.
Sinking back again,I thought suddenly of home.

--Bynner


(27) IN A MIRROR

By Li Bai

My whitening hair would make a long long rope,
Yet could not fathom all my depth of woe;
Though how it comes within a mirror`s scope
To sprinkle autumn frosts, I do not know.

--Gilles


(28) THE JINGTING MOUNTAIN

By Li Bai

Flocks of birds have flown high a and away;
A solitary drift of cloud, too, has gone,
wandering on.
And I sit alone with the jingting Peak,
towering beyond.
We never grow tired of each other, the
mountain and I.

--Obata


(29) THE NIGHT OF SORROW

By Li Bai

A lovely womon rolls up
The delicate bamboo blind.
She sits deep within,
Twitching her moth eyebrows.
who may it be
That grieves her hearrt?
On her face one sees
only the wet traces of tears.

--Obata


(30) A REPLY

By Li Bai

He asks why I perch in the green jade hills.
I smile and do not answer. My heart is
comfortable and at peace.
Fallen peach flowers spread out widely, widely
over the water.
It is another sky and earth, not the world of man.

--Lowell


(31) THE RUIN OF THE KUSU PALACE

By Li Bai

In the deserted garden among the crumbling walls
The willows show green again,
While the sweet notes of the water-nut song
Seem to lament the spring.
Nothing remains but the moon above the river--
The moon that once shone on the fair faces
That smiled in the king`s palace of wu.

--Obata


(32) THE RIVER JOURNEY FROM WHITE KING CITY

By Li Bai

At dawn I left the walled city of White King,
Towering among the many-coloured clouds;
And came down stream in a day
One thousand Li to Joang-ling.
The scarcely ceased echoing in my ear
When my skiff had left behind it
Ten thousand ranges of hills.

--Obata


(33) WHILE JOURNEYING

By Li Bai

The delicious wine of Lanling is of golden hue and flavorous.
Come,fill my precious glass, and let it glow in amber!
If you can make me drunk ,mine host ,it is enough;
No longer shall I know the sorrow of a strange land.

--Obata


(34) TO WANG LUN

By Li Bai

I was about to sail away in a junk,
When suddenly I heard
The sound of stamping and singing on the bank--
It was you and yuor friends come to bid me farewell.
The Peach Flower LaKe is a fhousand fathoms deep,
But it cannot compare,O Wang Lun,
with the depth of your love for me.

--Obata


(35) AN ENCOUNTER IN THE FIELD

By Li Bai

Came an amorous rider,
Trampling the fallen flowers of the road.
The dangling end of his crop
Brushes a passing carriage of five-colored clouds.
The jeweled curtain is raised
A beautiful woman smiles within--
"That is my house," she whispers,
Pointing to a pink house beyond.

--Obata


(36) HEARING A BAMBOO FLUTE ON A SPRING NIGHT IN THE CITY OF LUOYANG

By Li Bai

From whose house do the invisible notes of a jade flute come flying?
The spring wind scatters fhem. They fill the city of LuoYang.
To-night, as the phrase form, I hear "The Snapped Willow."
To whom do they not bring back the love of his old,early garden?


(37) AT CHUZHOU ON THE WESTERN STREAM

By Wei Yingwu

Where tender grasses rim the stream
And deep boughs twill with mango-birds,
On the spring flood of last night`s rain
The freey-boat moves as though someone were poling.

--Bynner


(39) ON MEETING A MESSENGER TO THE CAPITAL

By Cen Shen

It`s a long way home,a long way east.
I am old and my sleeve is wet with tears.
we meet on horse-back. I have no means of writing.
Tell them there words--"He is safe."

--Bynner


(39) THE FALLEN GARDEN

By Cen Shen

About the garden flies at dusk
an aimless crow or two.
A house or two are scattered round
as far as eye can view.
The trees not knowing all have gone,
that they alone are left,
Their flowers with returning spring
as formerly renew.

--Fletcher


(40) IN ABSENCE

By Du Fu

White gleams the gulls across darkling tide,
On the green hills the red flowers seem to burn;
Alas, I see another spring has died...
When will it come--the day of my return?

--Giles


(41) SPRING JOYS

By Du Fu

When freshets cease in early spring
and the river dwindles low,
I take my staff and wander
by the banks where wild flowers grow.
I watch the willow-catkins
wildly whirled on every side;
I watch the falling peach-bloom
lightly floating down the tide.

--Giles


(41) THE PAING OF LOVE

By Jia Zhi

The yellow willow waver above
the grass is green below.
The peach and pear blossoms
in massed fragrance grow.
The east wind dose not besr away
the sorrow at my heart.
Spring`s growing days but lengthen out
my still increasing woe.

--Fletcher


(43) A NIGHT MOORING NEAR MAPLE BRIDGE

By Zhang Ji

While I watch the moon go down,a crow caws
through the frost;
Under the shadows of maple-trees a fishman
moves with his torch;
And I hear from beyond SuZhoo from the temple
on Cold Mountain,
Ringing for me here in my boat the midnight bell.

--Bynner


(44) A MOONLIGHT NIGHT

By Liu Fangping

When the moon has coloured half house,
With the North Star at its height and the South Star setting,
I can feel first motions of warm air of spring.
In the singing of an insect at my green-silk window.

--Bynner


(45) THE SPINSTAR

By Liu Fangping

Dim twilght throws a deeper sgade
across the window screen;
Alone within a gilded hall
her tear-drops flow unseen.
No sound the lonely court-yard stirs;
the spring is all but through;
Around the pear-blooms fade and fall...
and no one comes to woo.

--Giles


(46) IN MONGOLIA

By Wang Zhihuan

The Yollow River rises far
from fleecy cloudland tossed.
`Mid peaks so high our tiny town
to sight is almost lost.
Why need my Mongol flute bewail
the elm and the willow missed?
Beyoud the Yumen pass the breath
of spring has never crossed.

--Fletcher


(47) A PALACE POEM

By Gu Kuang

High above, from a jade chamber,songs float halfway
to heaven,
The palace-girls` gay voices are mingled with the
wind---
But now they are still, and you hear a water-clock
drip in the Court of the Moon....
They have opened the curtain wide, they are facing
the River of Star.


(48) LONELY

By Geng Wei

The evening sun slants o`er the village street;
My grief alas! in solitude are borne;
Along the road no wayfarers I meet,--
Naught but the autumn breeze across the corn.

--Giles


(49) A SONG OF THE SOUTHERN RIVER

By Li Yi

Since I married the merchant of Qutang
He has failed each day to keep his word....
Had I thought how regular the tide is,
I might rather have chosen a river boy.

--Bynner


(50) A CAST-OFF FAVOURITE

By Li Yi

The dewdrops gleam on bright spring flowers
whose scent is borne olang;
Beneath the moon the palace ring
with sounds of lute and song.
It seems that the clepsydra
has been filled up with the sea
To make the long long night appear
an endless night for me!

--Giles


(51) ON HEARING A FLUTE AT NIGHT

By Li Yi

The sand below the border-mountain lies like snow
And the moon like frost beyond the city-wall,
And someone somewhere playing a flute,
Has made the soldiers homesick all night long.

--Bynner


(52) AUTUMN LEAVES

by Lu Lun

The,years that pass
Have brought with them
White hair.
Autumn has come
And the trees stand
Bare and cold.

Perplexed,
I ask the yellow leavers:
"Are you,too,sad?
What griefs have you
That you
Are sere and old?"

--Hart


(53-55) BORDER SONGS

By Lu Lun

(1)

His golden arrow is tipped with hawk`s feathers,
His embroidered silk flag has a tail like a swallow,
One man, arising, gives a new order
To the answering shout of a thousand tents.

(2)

The woods are black and a wind assails the grasses,
Yet the general tries night archery--
And next morning he finds his white-plumed arrow
Pointed deep in the hard rock.

(3)

High in the faint moonlight, wild geese are soaring.
Tartar chieftains are fleeing through the dark--
And we chase them, with horses lightly burdened
And a burden of snow on our bows and our swords.


(56) RIVER-SNOW

By Liu Zongyuan

A hundred mountains and no bird,
A thousand paths without a footprint;
A little boat,a bamboo cloak,
An old man fishing in the cold river-snow.

--Bynner


(62) THE ODALISQUE

By Liu Yuxi

A gaily dressed damset steps forth her bower
Bewailing the fate that forbids her to roam;
In the courtyard she counts up the buds on each flower,
While a dragon-fly flutters and sits on her comb.

--Giles


(63) BLACKTAIL ROW

By liu Yuxi

Grass has run wild now by the Bridge of Red-Birds;
And swallow`s wings, at sunset in Blacktail Row
Where once they visited great homes,
Dip among doorways of the poor.

--Bynner


(64) THE CITY OF STONES(NANJING)

By Liu Yuxi

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.

--Lowell


(65) DAYDRREAMS

By Zhang Zhongsu

Far away on the old city walls
The willows
Are clouds of gray.
Row on row
The mulberries grow
All cald in robes of green.

Yesternight I dreamed--
How sweet that dream!--
Of you in far Yuyang.
And all the whike
My gathered leaves
Lie wilting in the sun!

--Hart


(66) A RETROSPECT

By Cui Hu

On this day last year what a party were we!
Pink cheeks and pink peach-blossoms smiled
upon me;
But alas the pink cheeks are now far far away,
Through the peach-blossoms smile as they smiled
on that day.

--Giles


(67) LEAVE ME NOT

By Meng Jiao

You wish to go, and yet your robe I hold.
Where are you going-tell me, dear-to-day?
Your late returning does not anger me,
But that anogher steal your heart away.

--Fletcher


(68) A NOTE LEFT FOR AN ABSENT RECLUSE

By Jia Dao

When I questioned your pupil, under a pine-tree,
"my teacher," he answered, "went for herbs,
But toward which corner ot the mountain,
How can I tell, through all these clouds?"

--Bynner


(69) DEPRESSION

By Bai Juyi

I hug my pillow and do not skeak a word;
In my empty room no sound stirs.
Who knows that, all day a-bed,
I am not ill and am not even asleep?

--Waley


(70) A SUGGESTION

By Bai Juyi

There`s a gleam of green in an old bottle,
There`s a stir of red in the quite stove,
There`s a feeling of snow in the dusk outside--
What about a cup of wine inside?

--Bynner


(71) DESERTED

By Bai Juyi

Soaked is her kerchief through with tears,
yet slumber will not come;
In the deep dead of night she hears
the song and beat of drum,
Alas,although his love has gone,
her beauty lingers yet;
Sadly she sits till early dawn,
but never can forget.

--Giles


(72) THE RED COCKATOO

By Bai Juyi

Sent as a present from Annam--
A red cockatoo
Coloured like the peach-tree blossom,
Speaking with the skeech of men.
And they did to it what it always done
To the learned and eloquent.
They took a cage with stout bars
And shut it up inside.

--Waley


(73) ILLNESS

By Bai Juyi

Dear friends, there is no cause for so much
sympathy.
I shall certainly manage from time to time
to take my walks abroad.
All that matters is an active mind, what is
the use of feet?
By land one can ride in a carrying-chair;
by water,be rowed in a boat.

--Waley


(74) AT AN OLD PALACE

By Yuan Zhen

Deserted now the Imperial bowers
Save by some few poor lonely flowers--.
One white-haired dame,
An Emperor`s flame,
Sits down and tells of bygone hours.

--Giles


(75) SHE SINGS AN OLD SONG

By Zhang Hu

A lady of the palace these twenty years,
She has lived here a thousand miles from her home--
Yet ask her for this song and, with the first few
words of it,
See how she tries to hold back her tears.

--Bynner


(76) OF ONE IN THE FORBIDDEN CITY

By Zhang Hu

When the moonlight, reaching a tree by the gate,
Shows her a quiet bird on its nest,
She removes her jade hairpins and sits in the
shadow,
And puts out a flame where a moth was flying.

--Bynner


(77) IN THE HAREM

By Zhu Qingyu

It was the time of flowers, the gate was closed;
Within an arbour`s shade fair girls reposed.
But though their hearts were full, they nothing said,
Fearing the tell-tale parrot overhead.

--Giles


(78) ON THE EVE OF GOVERNMENT EXAMINATIONS TO SECRETARY ZHANG

By Zhu Qingyu

Out go the great red wedding-chamber candles.
Tomorrow in state the bride faces your parents.
She has finished preparing; she asks of you meekly
Whether her eyebrows are painted in fashion.

--Bynner


(79-80) PARTING

By Du Mu

(1)

She is slim and supple and not yet fourteen,
The young spying-tip of a cardamon-spray.
On the Yangzhou Road for three miles in the breeze
Every pearl-screen is open. But there`s no one
like her.

--Bynner

(2)

How can a deep love seem a deep love.
How can it smile, at a farewell feast?
Even the candle, feeling our sadness,
Weeps, as we do, all night long.

--Bynner


(81) LOVERS PARTED

By Du Mu

Across the screen the autumn moon
stares coldly from tthe sky;
With silken fan I sit and flick
the frieflies sailing by.
The night grows colder every hour,--
it chills me to the heart
To watch the Spinning Damsel
from the Herd boy far apart.

--Giles


(82) THE OLD PALACE

By Du Mu

A wilderness alone remains,
all garden glories gone;
The river runs unheeded by,
weeds grow unheeded on.
Dusk comes, the east wind blows, and birds
pipe forth a mournful sound
Petals,like nymphs from balconies,
comes tumbling to the ground.

--Giles


(83) SOUVENIRS

By Li Shangyin

You ask me when I`m coming, Alas, not just yet--.
How the rain filled the pools on that night when
we met!
Ah, when shall we ever snuff candles again,
And recall the glad hours of that evening of rain?

--Giles


(84) TO THE MOON GODDESS

By Li Shangyin

Now that a candle-shadow stands on the screen of
carven marble,
And the River of Heaven slants and the morning stars
are low,
Are you sorry for having stolen the potion that
has set you
Over purple seas and blue skies to brood through
the long night?


(85) WHERE ARE THEY?

By Zhao Jia

Alone I mount to the kiosque which stands
on the river-bank,and sigh,
While the moonbeams dance on the tops of the waves
where the waters touch the sky;
For the lovely scene is to last year`s scene
as like as like can be,
All but the friends, the much-loved friends,
who gazed at the moon with me.

--Giles


986) CROSSING THE HAN RIVER

By Li Pin

Away from home, I was longing for news,
Winter after winter, spying after spring.
Now,nearing my village, meeting people,
I dare not ask a single question.

--Bynner


(87) A RUN

By Han Wu

Upon the yard looks in the placid moon;
Down float the petals of the wild pear trees.
I gaze adown the vacant steps alone.
The swing sways with the motion of the breeze.

--Fletcher


(88) MUSING

By Xue Ying

At eve, along the river bank,
The mist-crowned wavelets lure me on
To think how all antiquity
Has floated down the stream and gone!

--Giles


(89) A STORM

By Wang Jia

No rain, and lovely flowers bloom around;
Rain falls, and battered petals strew the ground.
The bees and butterflies flit,one and all,
To seek the spring beyond my neighbour`s wall.

--Giles


(90) A SPRING FEAST

By Zhang Yan

The paddy crops are waxing rich
upon the Gooose-lake hill;
The fowls have just now gone to roost,
the grunting pigs are still;
The mulberry casts a lengthening shade--
the festival is o`er,
And tipsy revellerd are helped
each to his cottage door.

--Giles


(91) A PROTEST

By Cao Song

The hills and rivers of the lowland country
You have made your battle-ground.
How do you suppose the people who live there
Will procure "friewood and hay"?
Do not let me hear you talking together
About titles and promotions;
For a single general`s reputation
Is made out of ten thousand corpses.

--Waley


(92) A NANJING LANDSCAPE

by Wei Zhuang

Though a shower bends the river-grass,a bird is
singing,
While ghosts of the Six Dynasties pass like a dream
A round the Forbidden City, under weeping willows
Which loom still for three miles along the misty moat.

--Bynner


(93) SPRING IN THE HAREM

By Cui Daorong

My husband to the wars has gone
And I a cloak for him would make:
To wrap him from the rugged clime
Lest bitter cold his slumbers break.

But when I tried to cut the words
Of "Happy Spring" as omen fair,
The chilling breath that winter leaves
Benumbed and left me helpless there.

If cold am I, far colder thou
Upon those desert plains and bare!
Thou lookest for thy cloak and I
Of sending it despair.

--Fletcher


(94) TO AN ABSENT FAIR ONE

By Zhang Bi

After parting, dreams possessed me
and I wandered you know where.
And we sat in the verandah
and you sang the sweet old air.
Then I woke, with no one near me
save the moon still shining on,
And lighting up dead petals
which like you have passed and gone.

--Giles


(95) AN OATH

By Chen Tao

They swore the Huns should perish:
they would die if needs they must--.
And now five thousand, sable-clad,
have bit the Tartar dust.
Along the river-bank their bones
lie scattered where they may,
But still their forms in dreams arise
to fair ones far away.

--Giles


(96) A LOVER`S DREAM

By Jin ChangXu

Oh, drive the golden orioles
From off our garden tree!
Their warbling broke the dream wherein
My lover smiled to me.

--Fletcher


(97) DANCING

By Yang Guifei

Wide sleeves sway.
Scents,
Sweet Scents
Incessant coming.

It is red lilies,
Lotus lilies,
Floating up,
And up,
Out of autumn mist.

Thin clouds
Puffed,
Fluttered,
Mlown on a rippling wind
Through a mountain pass.

Young willow shoots
Touching
Brushing
The water
Of the garden pool.

--Lowell


(98) RICHES

By Du Qiuniang

If you will take advice, my friend,
For wealth you will not care.
But while fresh youth is in you,
Each precious moment spare.
When flowers are fit for culling,
Then pluck them as you may.
Ah! wait not till the bloom be gone,
To bear a twig away.

--Fletcher


(99) GENERAL GESHU

Anonymous

This constellation, with its seven high stars,
Is Deshu lifting his sword in the night;
And no more barbarians, nor their horses,
nor cattle,
Dare ford the river boundary.

--Bynner


(100) THE DAY OF NO FIRE

Anonymous

As the holiday approaches, and grasses are bright
after rain,
And the causeway gleams with willows, and wheat--
fields wave in the wind,
We are thinking of our kinsfolk, far away from us.
O cuckoo, why do you follow us, why do you call us
home?

--Bynner


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