Year: 
2011
This poem tells the story of meeting a drifting traveler who doesn’t know where he is going and will never return.


Translation

By Wang Wei  (701-761 AD)
王維
Farewell
送別


Dismount the horse
and have some wine—

下馬
飲君酒
I ask—
to where are you going?

問君
何所之
You say
you cannot guess

君言
不得意
And will rest
at the foot of the Southern Mountain

歸臥
南山陲
You merely depart
and will not return—
is what I hear:

但去
莫復
A white cloud
drifts without end

白雲
無盡時

Original Chinese

Traditional
Simplified
Pronunciation



王維
Wáng Wéi
送別
Sòng Bié



下馬飲君酒,
马饮君酒,
Xià mǎ // yǐn jūn jiǔ,
問君何所之?
君何所之?
Wèn jūn // hé suǒ zhī?
君言不得意,
君言不得意,
Jūn yán // bù dé yì,
歸臥南山陲。
归卧南山陲。
Guī wò // nán shān chuí.
但去莫復聞,
但去莫复闻
Dàn qù // mò fù wén,
白雲無盡時。
白云无尽
Bái yún // wú jìn shí.


Literal Translation

王維
King Preserve [Wang Wei  (701-761 AD)]
送別
See-off Part [Farewell]


下馬飲君酒,
Down horse drink you wine
[down horse = dismount]
問君何所之?
Ask you what place to?
君言不得意,
You say/words no obtain think/wish/anticipate
[no obtain = cannot/must not/may not]
歸臥南山陲。
Return/taken-care lie-down south mountain border
[south mountain = Nanshan]
但去莫復聞,
Only/merely depart do-not/there-is-none go-and-return hear/make-known/ask
白雲無盡時。
White clouds not exhaust/finish time