Communicator (communicator) wrote,

Ancient Air

Poetry night at the Tin Angel. Two friends came with me, and charmed the poets. I read two poems I had written, one a translation of a Chinese poem by Li Po.

Ancient Air

Climbing so high I gaze upon the ocean
Heaven and earth spread out below so vast
Frost blankets the autumn jumble
The wind out of the great cold desert
The mighty river ever flowing East
Ten thousand things in motion
The white sun, covered, breaks in brilliance
The floating cloud has no determined end
In the ancient tree the sparrow rests
The phoenix perches in the bitter thorn
And now it's time that I return again
Sword, sing to me about the hard road home

Li Po (sometimes called Li Bai) was a Chinese poet of the 8th century AD. He was part of the group of Chinese scholars called the "Eight Immortals of the Wine Cup". Wikipedia says 'Li Bai is best known for the extravagant imagination and striking Taoist imagery in his poetry, as well as for his great love for liquor.'

Anyway, I love his work, and I have done a few translations.

ETA - here is a word for word translation if you would like to do your own.
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