Thursday, November 9, 2023

"Written on the wall at Chang's Hermitage" by Tu Fu


It is Spring in the mountains.
I come alone seeking you.
The sound of chopping wood echos
Between the silent peaks.
The streams are still icy.
There is snow on the trail.
At sunset I reach your grove
In the stony mountain pass.
You want nothing, although at night
You can see the aura of gold
And silver ore all around you.
You have learned to be gentle
As the mountain deer you have tamed.
The way back forgotten, hidden
Away, I become like you,
An empty boat, floating, adrift.

Source of the text - Kenneth Rexroth, One Hundred Poems from the Chinese.  New York: New Directions Books, 1971, page 4.  

TJB: Unneedy graffiti. Drenched in seasonal awareness and location, this lyric dramatizes the approach to Chang and the poet’s discovery of inner peace.

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