The Poetical Quotidian
by Liu Ch'e, Emperor Wu of the Han (156-87BC)
translated by Kenneth Rexroth
The autumn wind blows white clouds
About the sky. Grass turns brown.
Leaves fall. Wild geese fly south.
The last flowers bloom, orchids
And chrysanthemums with their
Bitter perfume. I dream of
That beautiful face I can
Never forget. I go for
A trip on the river. The barge
Rides the current and dips with
The white capped waves. They play flutes
And drums, and the rowers sing.
I am happy for a moment
And then the old sorrow comes back.
I was young only a little while,
And now I am growing old.
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