Category: Poems by – 李白 (710-762)

Poems from 李白

《望天門山》 (唐)李白(761-762)

天門中斷楚江開    碧水東流至此回
兩岸青山相對出    孤帆一片日邊來

《A View of the Mt. Heaven Pass》        Li Bai(761-762) 江紹倫譯

The Yangtze rolls on to split Mt. Heaven for a gorge
Billows hurl the eastward river to turn back north
As the green riverbanks watch from opposite sides
A solitary sail appears leaving the sun behind

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行路难 (唐) 李白

 

金樽清酒斗十千    玉盘珍馐直万钱

停杯投箸不能食    拔剑四顾心茫然

欲渡黄河冰塞川    将登太行雪满山

闲来垂钓碧溪上    忽复乘舟梦日边

行路难    行路难   多歧路   今安在

长风破浪会有时    直挂云帆济沧海 

translated by YK Chan ( 5 Oct 2009):

Trekking Pains              Li Bai

Wine in a golden cup costs an arm and a leg;
  food served in a jade platter makes you bankrupt quick.

Laying my cup down with chopsticks in hand, I still fancy the eats not;
  my sword drawn: I look around in vain and at tort.

To cross Yellow River giant icebergs block;
  the track up Mount Taiheng fully blizzard clogged.

Rather, better be an angler at leisure upon emerald brooks,
  or a dreamer boating where the sun looks.

Trekking is pain and ache, ache and pain;
  from mistaken routes where is my way?

A time would come for riding with the wind on the waves,
  with sails hung high crossing the broad straights.

Translated by KC  Lee  (4 October 2009):

 The Rough Road

Laid out on the table are bottles of the rarest vintage and my most favorite dishes presented in the finest china.
Yet in frustration I abandoned my glass and laid down my utensils.
Instead, I drew my sword.  But all I could manage was to stare emptily into the distance.

Even if I want to cross the Yellow River , it is clogged with ice.  As for my plan to traverse TaiHang Shan, it is thwarted by fierce snow storms.

But then I recalled the stories of Lu fishing leisurely by the creek, and Yi dreaming himself sailing past the Sun and the Moon.  Before they were eventually recognized by the Emperor and accomplished great deeds for the country.

No doubt the road into my future is rough and uncertain. Yet I may still have my own day. Riding the tall winds to cut across the far oceans.

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李白: 題峰顶寺 (夜宿山寺)

Submitted on 2009/12/14 at 1:29am

I am Andrew Wong, Wah Yan Hong Kong matriculation 1963. Last week, I came across your blog by accident and discovered you are translating Tang and Song poetry in earnest. I happen to share this interest. Fr. John Turner was after all my teacher. And I think F.Y. Yu and I read poetry under Edmund Blunden in 1963-64 at the University of Hong Kong. Here is my rendition of a version of the same poem by the older Li Bai:-

李白: 題峰顶寺 (夜宿山寺)

Li Bai (701-762): Written at the Summit Temple
(Lodged for the Night at a Mountain Temple)

1 夜宿峰頂寺(危樓高百尺)
2 舉手捫(手可摘)星辰
3 不敢高聲語
4 恐驚天上人

1 I lodge for the night at Summit Temple,
2 Can touch, at arm’s reach, the stars so nigh;
3 Yet I dare not raise my voice in speech,
4 For fear might disturb the beings up high.

Translated by Andrew Wong W.F. Wong (Huang Hongfa) 譯者: 黄宏發
8th December 2009 (revised 10.12.09: 11.12.09; 12.12.09)

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下終南山過斛斯山人宿置酒 (唐)李白

暮從碧山下   山月隨人歸   卻顧所來徑   蒼蒼橫翠微
相攜及田家   童稚開荊扉   綠竹入幽徑   青蘿拂行衣
歡言得所憩   美酒聊共揮   長歌吟松風   曲盡河星稀
我醉君複樂   陶然共忘機

With Hermit Husi in the Zhongnan Mountain          江紹倫譯 

I descended the green hill as dusk got hold
The moon followed me home without being told
Looking back at the path I had leisurely treaded
It winded through thickets in dark green spread
We arrived at your farmhouse holding hands
Children opened the wooden gate polite and glad
The secluded alley had lush green bamboo lined on both sides
While blue vines caressed my clothing as I walked by
We chatted amiably enjoying a peace of mind
And sampled fine brews our connoisseur taste so define
Fervently we sang songs of pine and wind
Stopping not until stars appeared dim and thin
How happy it was with me tipsy and you in glee
We made merry forgetting worldly strife and drudgery

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《月下獨酌》__ (唐) 李白

花間一壺酒  獨酌無相親
舉杯邀明月  對影成三人
月既不解影  影徒隨我身
暫伴月將影  行樂需及春
我歌月徘徊  我舞影零亂
醒時同交歡  醉後各分散
永結無情遊  相期邈雲漢

Drinking Alone in Moonlight                       tr By SL Kong

A bottle in hand amid flowers plentiful
Drinking alone with no one dear to hold
I raise my cup to invite the moon for my drinking mate
Her light casts my shadow so we have a three-some date
The moon knows not how to drink or cheer
Leaving only my shadow to follow me here and there
Together for the moment we happily play
And make merry this spring day
I sing and the moon lingers far and near
I dance and my shadow flutters hither and where
Sober we remain cheerful and gay
Drunk we part to go each other’s own way
We pledge togetherness for eternity
To parallel the legendary lovers in the galaxy

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《將進酒》___ 李白

君不見
黃河之水天上來,奔流到海不復回?
君不見
高堂明鏡悲白髮,朝如青絲暮成雪?
人生得意須盡歡,莫使金樽空對月。
天生我材必有用,千金散盡還復來。
烹羊宰牛且為樂,會須一飲三百杯。
岑夫子,丹丘生,
將進酒,君莫停。
與君歌一曲,請君為我側耳聽。
鐘鼓饌玉不足貴,但願長醉不願醒。
古來聖賢皆寂寞,惟有飲者留其名。
陳王昔時宴平樂,鬥酒十千恣歡謔。
主人何為言少錢,逕須沽取對君酌。
五花馬,千金裘,
呼兒將出換美酒,與爾同銷萬古愁!

Let’s Drink                                         tr By SL Kong

Behold Yellow River waters originate high from the sky
Torrents rush to sea will n’ver return low or high
Behold grandparents before the mirror watch their grey hair sadly
Silky-black locks at dawn turned white at dusk so mercilessly
When in success we should enjoy life in great delight
And n’ver leave golden goblets empty in a moonlit night
Nature has endowed me with talents to usefully apply
Gold spent in thousands will be regained out right
Cows and sheep finely cooked will be savoured merrily
And mellow brews will be shared a thousand round in glee

Dear friends and students
Replenish your cups
Do not interrupt
Let’s together sing
Let your ears be filled with soothing ring
Bells and drums are unimportant not even costly dishes
I prefer to get drunk any time as I wish
Most scholars and saints are not recorded in historic books
Only wine lovers who share and cheer are remembered in documentary notes
Being host one should spare not any money
But to offer one’s best wines for everybody to share generously
Stately stallions
Costly furs
My son will take them to exchange for the finest brews money can buy
Let’s drink together until we are high
And leave any lingering worry behind

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憶秦娥 (唐) 李白

簫聲咽,秦娥夢斷秦樓月。
秦樓月,年年柳色,灞陵傷別。

樂遊原上清秋節,咸陽古道音塵絕。
音塵絕,西風殘照,漢家陵闕。

Tune: Remembering the Palace Maids
tr. By S L Kong (1953)

Her flute mute
Her dream cut short by a rendezvous at the moonlit Chin Palace
O moonlit Chin Palace
How she lamented bidding farewell to those glorious days
When year round green palace willows stayed

So much happiness was left behind in the land where autumn fests celebrate
As memories on the Xianyang ancient ways faded
O memories faded
Whence the sun set even the west wind stood
Only the Han tombs and palace ruins continue to moot

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《送孟浩然之廣陵》__ (唐) 李白

故人西辭黃鶴樓     煙花三月下揚州
孤帆遠影碧山盡     唯見長江天際流

Farewell – on seeing Meng Hao-jan off from Brown Crane Tower as he took his departure for Kuang-lin, tr by Father John Turner

And so, dear friend, at Brown Crane Tower you,
Bidding the West adieu,
‘Mid April mists and blossoms go,
Till in the vast blue-green
Your lonely sail’s far shade no more is seen,
Only on the sky’s verge the River’s flow.

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早发白帝城 (唐)李白

朝辞白帝彩云间
千里江陵一日还
两岸猿声啼不住
轻舟已过万重山
 
Leaving Bai Di Chun at Dawn             tr. By S L Kong (Class of 1953)

I left at dawn the castle town of Bai Di beneath colourful clouds
To sail round one thousand li of waters and canyons in a day
While monkeys on shore said adieus aloud
Their sad cries vanished as my skiff passed mountains away

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夜宿山寺 (唐)李白

 危樓高百尺﹐
手可摘星辰。
不敢高聲語﹐
恐驚天上人。
  
Overnight at a Mountain Temple          tr. SL Kong (1953)

High on the cliff the dangling temple stands
Where I can pluck stars with my hands
Deep at night I dare not speak aloud
Else I wake the dwellers above the cloud

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