When first leaves fall on Lake Dongting, I long for you, thousands of miles away. In heavy dew my scented quilt feels cold, At moonset, brocade screen deserted. I would play a Southland melody And crave to seal a letter to Jibei. The letter has no other message but This misery in living long apart.
We present this work in honor of the Ching Ming Festival.
Though life is brief, feeling is everlasting; That is why man wants to live long. The sun and moon follow the stars. The whole world loves this name. The dew is cold, and the warm wind drops; The air is penetrating, the day bright. The departing swallow leaves no shadow; The returning wild goose brings a lingering cry. Wine can wash away a hundred woes, And chrysanthemums set a pattern for old age. Why should I, a hermit, Gaze vacantly at the change of seasons? The ministers are ashamed of their empty grain jars. The autumn chrysanthemums are alone in their beauty. I alone sing while fastening my garments. A feeling of melancholy stirs deep within me. It is true that there is much amusement in living, But in idling is there no accomplishment?
Sometimes words come hard, they resist me till I pluck them from deep water like hooked fish; sometimes they are birds soaring out of a cloud that fall right into place, shot with arrows, and I harvest lines neglected for a hundred generations, rhymes underheard for a thousand years. I won’t touch a flower already in morning bloom but quicken the unopened evening buds. In a blink I see today and the past, put out my hand and touch all the seas.
We present this work in honor of the poet’s 130th birthday.
The street lights are on in a distance As if numerous stars show. The bright stars loom in the above As if numerous street lights glow. I believe there must be a beautiful market street In that aerial heaven with cloud clear. The goods displayed on that street Must be rarities which we don’t have here. You see, that shallow Milky Way Must be not very wide. The cowherd and weaving lady separated by it Must be able to visit each other on a ride. I believe at this moment along that street Sauntering there must be they. If you doubt, please look at that shooting star, Which may be the lantern they are taking on their way.
We present this work in honor of the 375th anniversary of the poet’s death.
Willow catkins are swept up by wind and rain Down on the ground, they roll like blobs of cotton Down on the ground, they roll like blobs of cotton, Revealing the spring breeze’s weakness at the pavilion. Privately I relate my painful memory of a lost country To the Yangtze River that flows to the east Its whole length being filled with my grief.
We present this work in honor of the Chung Yeung Festival.
On a northern peak among white clouds You have found your hermitage of peace; And now, as I climb this mountain to see you, High with the wildgeese flies my heart. The quiet dusk might seem a little sad If this autumn weather were not so brisk and clear; I look down at the river bank, with homeward-bound villagers Resting on the sand till the ferry returns; There are trees at the horizon like a row of grasses And against the river’s rim an island like the moon I hope that you will come and meet me, bringing a basket of wine And we’ll celebrate together the Mountain Holiday.
We present this work in honor of China’s National Day.
A String of bright beacon fires lights up the Capital; My blood’s boiling, my heart’s crying out for battle! Leaving Changan with royal warrant hastily, Armoured cavalries aim to besiege the enemy city.
Painted banners are dimmed by the heavy snows pelting, Thundering war drums are heard amidst the gusts howling. O, To be a fighting centurion I’d be most willing, Rather than a verse-reciting scholarly weakling!