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To the Recluse, Wei Pa Analysis

Author: Poetry of Tu Fu Type: Poetry Views: 183

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Often in this life of ours we resemble, in our failure to meet, the Shen and

Shang constellations, one of which rises as the other one sets. What lucky

chance is it, then, that brings us together this evening under the light of

this same lamp? Youth and vigor last but a little time. --- Each of us now has

greying temples. Half of the friends we ask each other about are dead, and our

shocked cries sear the heart. Who could have guessed that it would be twenty

years before I sat once more beneath your roof? Last time we parted you were

still unmarried, but now here suddenly is a row of boys and girls who

smilingly pay their respects to their father's old friend. They ask me where I

have come from; but before I have finished dealing with their questions, the

children are hurried off to fetch us wine. Spring chives are cut in the rainy

dark, and there is freshly steamed rice mixed with yellow millet. `Come, we

don't meet often!' you hospitably urge, pouring out ten cupfuls in rapid

succession. That I am still not drunk after ten cups of wine is due to the

strength of the emotion which your unchanging friendship inspires. Tomorrow

the peak will lie between us, and each will be lost to the other, swallowed up

in the world's affairs.

Tu Fu (tr. Hawkes)


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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

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NOTE: Whoever posted this and the other ten Du Fu translations by David Hawkes ( from his book A Little Primer of Tu Fu ) turned Hawkes' PROSE translations into "poems" by carelessly creating line-breaks in Hawkes' prose sentences. Although this was probably well-intentioned, it makes both Tu Fu and David Hawkes look inept. Read advisedly.
Stanton Hager

| Posted on 2017-07-07 | by a guest

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