Written January 1718 in the Chiosk at Pera, overlooking Constantinople
Give me Great God (said I) a Little Farm
in Summer shady, & in Winter warm
where a cool spring gives birth to a clear brook
by Nature slideing down a mossy Rock
Not artfully in Leaden Pipes convey'd
Or greatly falling in a forc'd Cascade
Pure & unsully'd winding throu' ye Shade.
All bounteous Heaven has added to my Praier
a softer Climate and a purer Air.
1 Our brains ache, in the merciless iced east winds that knife us ...
2 Wearied we keep awake because the night is silent ...
3 Low drooping flares confuse our memory of the salient ...
4 Worried by silence, sentries whisper, curious, nervous,
5 But nothing happens.
6 Watching, we hear the mad gusts tugging on the wire.
7 Like twitching agonies of men among its brambles.
Peach-buds to meet thee,
Robins to greet thee,
Hey, little Sweetheart! and May morning, hey!
Sunbeam and sing time,
Bluebird and wing time,
This time is kiss time for sweethearts, I say!
Dearest, God bless thee,
Fold and caress thee,
Unto thy cradle may good fairies fly!
Something there is that doesn't love a wall,
That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it,
And spills the upper boulders in the sun;
And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.
The work of hunters is another thing:
I have come after them and made repair
Where they have left not one stone on a stone,
But they would have the rabbit out of hiding,
To please the yelping dogs. The gaps I mean,
No one has seen them made or heard them made,
In the tenth year of Yuanhe I was banished and demoted to be assistant official in Jiujiang. In the summer of the next year I was seeing a friend leave Penpu and heard in the midnight from a neighbouring boat a guitar played in the manner of the capital. Upon inquiry, I found that the player had formerly been a dancing-girl there and in her maturity had been married to a merchant. I invited her to my boat to have her play for us. She told me her story, heyday and then unhappiness. Since my departure from the capital I had not felt sad; but that night, after I left her, I began to realize my banishment. And I wrote this long poem -- six hundred and twelve characters.
I was bidding a guest farewell, at night on the Xunyang River,
Where maple-leaves and full-grown rushes rustled in the autumn.
I, the host, had dismounted, my guest had boarded his boat,
And we raised our cups and wished to drink-but, alas, there was no music.
For all we had drunk we felt no joy and were parting from each other,
When the river widened mysteriously toward the full moon --
We had heard a sudden sound, a guitar across the water.
Host forgot to turn back home, and guest to go his way.
pure buds everywhere
it's the first of sunny spring
March holds its fresh breath
keen for wild soon days
when gold sun passes the stars
and hues light the hours
striking beauties are coming
I was born in everlasting springtime, as happenstance often does to others,
Like natural green halls wherein joy sings, to its wilder sisters and brothers.
I was situated in mellowed sunshine, like a colorful ship on the bronzed sea,
With innumerable blooms to catch the breezes, in a beautiful world carefree.
My indelible name is Honeysuckle, for my transitory scent spreads for miles,
Awakening warm hearts to springtime, and bringing on the delicious smiles!
I was robustly healthy and happy, in my prominent place by the porch stair,
delight of jade spring
pink perfumed mass profusion
sunbathing bronzed blooms
cardinal sings loud
from his perch next to blue sky
drawing the world's attention
rosy redbird skies
wednesday wind tosses tulips
plump pink peonies
days greener than green
wren visits my windowsill
springtime's come again
with the snapdragon fridays
Sleeping beauty has reawakened, and it is springtime again,
So like the younger days, when you skipped with Madeleine.
Purple hyacinths and daffodils, are fragrant in the meadows,
And the bush near the house, is colored with burgundy rose!
Wild hyacinths and dewy daffodils, usher in the sassy season,
Giving secret joy to many hearts, within the blooming region.
Birds sing in chartreuse fields, from morning until glitzy night,
When a day's flamenco dancers, are the rapture of moonlight!