A poem for my two young kids in Dong Lu
Author: Bai Li(AD701-AD762, Tang Dynasty)
Translator: Lei Fan 2016 in Chicago
Mulberry leaves have turned green in my hometown Wu,
Silkworms there have gone through three molts already.
My entire family is now moved to Dong Lu,
Who helps with plowing the farmland north of Mount Gui?
I probably will miss the spring seeding this year,
Walk along the river banks, I am anxious and at a loss.
Breeze from south gently waves through my homing heart,
Bring it back to the wine house in my village.
There is a peach tree standing at the east of the house,
Luxuriant leaves sway like curling green smokes.
I planted this tree a while back,
I have not seen it for three years.
It is now with the same height as the wine house,
I however have not yet returned.
My little daughter, her name is Yang Ping,
She picks a peach flower, standing next to the tree,
She is waiting for me, with the flower in her hand.
I am a guest in a strange land, her tears are falling.
I have a little son, his name is Qin Bo,
He stands next to her sister, almost same height, side by side.
Two young kids stand underneath the tall tree,
who will pad their backs and show them care of a dad?
My thought stops right there,
Day by day, my sorrow-stricken heart gets tormented.
I spread out a roll of white silk,
Write down this poem, as if I have already returned to my hometown.