[TRANSLATION]玉壶吟 – Song of Jade Flagon


Song of Jade Flagon

Author: Bai Li(AD701-AD762, Tang Dynasty)

Translator: Lei Fan 2016 in Chicago


I slap the jade flagon, chanting loudly,

Full of aspirations, unfortunately I am at my declining age.

Waving my long sword, dancing under the moon, after three cups of wine,

Suddenly, I raise my tone, can not stop but shed my tears.

I could still recollect when I first arrived at forbidden city, with edict in my hands,

In a royal feast, people with power and prestige all raised their cups.

I praised almighty emperor’s deeds and merits,

I looked down upon and sneered at those who claimed to be noblemen.

I rode those bestowed horses to go to the imperial court,

What in my hand was the white jaded coral whip.

Now like no one can understand deranged Shuo Dongfang,

I also started my reclusive, unfettered life behind this palace wall.

There once was a stunning belle called Shi Xi, whose every smile was elegant,

Those who tried to imitate, eventually became pillories.

I know emperor is fond of imperial concubines with crescent eyebrows,

Alas! It is the covetousness and jealousness which murder those true beauties!





Image Courtesy: 文史  古人宴飲圖(網絡圖)

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