Could I get mansions covering ten thousand miles, I’d house all the poor scholars and make them beam with smiles
― Du Fu
Du Fu was a well-known and renowned Chinese poet of the Tang Dynasty during the first century. He wanted to be a successful civil servant, yet he couldn’t hope to be one due to his inability to make accommodations for himself, and due to the An Lushan Rebellion of 755. Though being little known amongst the literary world, his works have been compared to other contemporary writers such as Plato, William Shakespeare, William Wordsworth and John Milton. Rather than a full-on poet, he is more of a poet-historian, writing about the integration of art and morality, a fundamental thought of Chinese history and philosophy. Since his writings were in traditional Chinese which hadn’t evolved yet, his translations were based on hard translating and intense annotation. He has also influenced many Japanese writers. Sadly, he died at the age of 55, in 770.
Wagons rattling and banging,
horses neighing and snorting,
conscripts marching, each with bow and arrows at his hip,
fathers and mothers, wives and children, running to see them off–
so much dust kicked up you can’t see Xian-yang Bridge!
And the families pulling at their clothes, stamping feet in anger,
blocking the way and weeping–
ah, the sound of …Read more »
Frosty winds rise from plain white silk,
a gray hawk, the painting wondrously done.
It perks up its body, longing for the crafty hare,
It looks sidelong, like a melancholy Hu.
One could pinch the light on its tie-ring,
on the porch its stance can be summoned.
When will it strike the common birds? —
blood and feathers sprinkling weeds o …Read more »