Chinese Poems – Li Bai

Listening to a Monk from Shu Playing the Lute

The monk from Shu with his green lute-case walked
Westward down Emei Shan, and at the sound
Of the first notes he strummed for me I heard
A thousand valleys’ rustling pines resound.
My heart was cleansed, as if in flowing water.
In bells of frost I heard the resonance die.
Dusk came unnoticed over the emerald hills
And Autumn clouds layered the darkening sky.
…. … … … …. … …

The Waterfall at Lu Shan

In sunshine, Censer Peak breathes purple mist.
A jutting stream, the cataract hangs in spray
Far off, then plunges down three thousand feet–
As if the sky had dropped the Milky Way.
– Li Bai
…. …. …. …. … …
Li Bai was born in Chinese Turkestan in 701. He travelled a great deal throughout China. He made a great impression on his contemporaries as a paradigm of the intoxicated and impulsive poet with his flashing eyes and great iconoclastic energy. He was interested in alchemy and Taoism.

From” Three Chinese Poets”
Translation by Vikram Seth


Author: nehal

Physician by profession, I like to spend my spare time reading literature and philosophy, getting to know different cultures and exploring various forms of creative expressions,..paintings,music, photography, cinema, theatre, sculpture and of course poetry. I usually write in my mother tongue Gujarati and sometimes in Hindi and English. Nehal’s world is at the crossroads of my inner and outer worlds, hope you like the journey…

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