Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Yet Another Poem and some Poetic Views of Summer

OK, so perhaps I should rename this blog "Poetry is My Thing" rather than "Toronto is my Town"  Enough said, one more poetry blog accompanied with a views of Lake Ontario I enjoyed this evening.  I know it is full on summer when on a Tuesday night the lake is full of sailboats.  I like to watch as they come in through the channel into the Toronto Harbour as night approaches.. 

Join me for a few minutes appreciating the poem following.  The message seems quite right for me at the moment as I sip a glass of wine all on my lonesome. No moon tonight, but I did glimpse just a sliver of a moon last night.

Li Bai's poem Drinking Alone by Moonlight (月下獨酌, pinyin: Yuè Xià Dú Zhuó), translated by Arthur Waley, reads:[17]
花間一壺酒。 A cup of wine, under the flowering trees;
獨酌無相親。 I drink alone, for no friend is near.
舉杯邀明月。 Raising my cup I beckon the bright moon,
對影成三人。 For her, with my shadow, will make three people.
月既不解飲。 The moon, alas, is no drinker of wine;
影徒隨我身。 Listless, my shadow creeps about at my side.
暫伴月將影。 Yet with the moon as friend and the shadow as slave
行樂須及春。 I must make merry before the Spring is spent.
我歌月徘徊。 To the songs I sing the moon flickers her beams;
我舞影零亂。 In the dance I weave my shadow tangles and breaks.
醒時同交歡。 While we were sober, three shared the fun;
醉後各分散。 Now we are drunk, each goes their way.
永結無情遊。 May we long share our eternal friendship,
相期邈雲漢。 And meet at last on the Cloudy River of the sky.

Li Bai (AKA Li Po or Li Bo),  701 – 762, was a Chinese poet. He is regarded as one of the greatest poets in China's Tang period, which westerners often consider China's "golden age" of poetry. He was part of the group of Chinese scholars called the "Eight Immortals of the Wine Cup" in a poem by fellow poet Du Fu.  Approximately 1,100 poems attributed to Li Bai remain today.
The following poem is one that young Chinese school children memorize.

Quiet Night Thoughts by Li Bai
The moonlight glistens in front of my bed.
I thought it was the frost on the ground.
I lift my gaze to view the shimmering moon,
Then lower my head, and miss my homeland.

More Poems by Li Bai 

I promise a blog and some pics of the G20 Summit Toronto preparations next weekend. What a lot of hulla balloo there is going on...

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful pictures of Lake Ontario. It would be very relaxing and peaceful to sit there sipping wine and looking out on that view. I've seen the sliver of the moon the last two nights.


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