Winter Forest

blue air
snowbound pockets
sailing the covered land
that's drifting white

branches broken
between the light
we lie in the snow
to sink beyond
anyone's sight

the streamlets circle
they wrap us
in their ice-bound arms
and we are one
shining with the sun

Autumn Night, A Note

Autumn Night, A Note

 
Wei Yingwu (~737 – 792)
 
 
By chance I think of you this autumn night
Between my steps and song, and cooling skies:
Within your quiet hills a pine cone falls,
For you as well must not have closed your eyes.
 
 
Chinese
 
秋夜寄邱員外
韋應物
 
懷君屬秋夜
散步詠涼天
空山松子落
幽人應未眠
Pronunciation
 
Qiū Yè Jì Qiū Yuán Wài

Farewell to a Lofty Monk

Farewell to a Lofty Monk

 
Liu Changqing (709-785)
 
 
A lofty cloud has met a common crane,
But how to live together in this land?
Don’t stay out here, though filled with fertile hills,
So many know this place, like grains of sand.
 
 
Chinese
 
送上人
劉長卿
 
孤雲將野鶴
豈向人間住
莫買沃洲山
時人已知處
Pronunciation
 

The Lute Player

The Lute Player

 
Liu Changqing (709-785)
 
 
As water flows, your lute of seven strings . . .
I hear the wind between the winter pines.
You pull an ancient tune that, though I love,
The players now can hardly play the lines.
 
 
Chinese
 
彈琴
劉長卿
 
泠泠七絃上
靜聽松風寒
古調雖自愛
今人多不彈
Pronunciation
 
Dàn Qín

Climbing the Bird Watch

Climbing the Bird Watch

 
Wang Zhihuan (688-742)
 
 
The white sun sets beyond the mountain line,
The Yellow River joins the ocean’s flow—
If poor but want a thousand-mile view,
Ascend a flight of stairs and it will show.
 
 

Thoughts on a Quiet Night

Thoughts on a Quiet Night

 
Li Bai (701-762)
 
 
Before my bed the bright moon shines its light,
Perhaps the frost now covers all the ground;
I lift my head to see the shining moon,
I bow my head to see my native town.
 
 
Chinese
 
靜夜思
李白
 
床前明月光
疑是地上霜
舉頭望明月
低頭思故鄉
Pronunciation
 
Jìng Yè Sī
Lǐ Bái
 

Spring Dawn

Spring Dawn

 
Meng Haoran (689/691–740)
 
 
Asleep in spring, unconscious of the dawn,
The chirp chirp song of birds is everywhere.
Last night the thunder, wind, and rain came long—
How many blossoms now remain out there?
 
 
Chinese
 
春曉
孟 浩 然
 
春眠不覺曉
處處聞啼鳥
夜來風雨聲
花落知多少
Pronunciation
 
Chūn Xiǎo
Mèng Hàorán

Farewell to Cui

Farewell to Cui

Pei Di (born ~ 714 A.D.)
 
 
On mountains steep and valleys deep
You’ll smile beyond the realm from there—
For just a day you’ll go that way,
To Peach Spring Garden, free of care.
 
 
Chinese
 
送崔九
裴迪
 
歸山深淺去
須盡丘壑美
莫學武陵人
暫遊桃源裡
Pronunciation
 
Sòng Cuī Jiǔ
Péi Dí
             

Gazing at Zhongnan’s Snow

Gazing at Zhongnan’s Snow

Zu Yong (699-746?)
 
 
As snow on Zhongnan Mountain floats in blooms
To form beyond the peak in cloudy nets
The forest clears in brightly colored hues—
But in the town, the cold and darkness sets.
 
 
Chinese
 
終南望餘雪
祖詠
 
終南陰嶺秀
積雪浮雲端
林表明霽色
城中增暮寒
Pronunciation
 
Zhōng Nán Wàng Yú Xuě
Zǔ Yǒng

Thoughts on Autumn (a micropoetry series)

drifting home
with the autumn leaves
colored into the earth

a spirit dream
as you walk along the lawn
all covered in leaves

this spot where
you stand, molded
like a statue
and chiseled deep
into the earth

my spirit lay
beneath the autumn wind
inside a blanket
of all your colors

thoughts like a net
woven into the fabric of the wind
to capture what little impulse
there is to escape

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