Wednesday, December 21, 2011

300 Tang Poems #21, Wang Changling's "Viewing the Moon"

My Translation

王昌齡


With My Younger Cousin
Relaxing in the Study Room
Viewing the Moon
Reflecting on My Friend1 Cui

同從弟
南齋翫
憶山陰崔少府


Reclining
in the south study,
passing the time

高臥
南齋
We open the curtain
as the moon
begins to rise

開帷
初吐
Clearly shining
on the fresh water,
the trees

清輝
淡水
Light swirling
on the window

演漾
在窗戶
How many
moons, full and empty,
have cycled over time?

苒苒
盈虛
How have we changed
from ancient to present times
under its pure shine?

澄澄
今古
***


A pleasant man
is settled
by the riverbank

美人
江畔
And on a night like this
moans of hardships
more and more

是夜
吟苦
He is
a thousand miles away
and what can we do?

千里
如何
The breeze
is blowing,
scented with orchids and pears

微風
蘭杜
Note
1. Literally “Shanyin County Minor Treasurer Cui.”


Original Chinese

Traditional
Simplified
Pronunciation



王昌齡
王昌龄
Wáng Chāng Líng
同從弟南齋翫
月憶山陰崔少府
同从弟南斋翫
月忆山阴崔少府
Tóng zòng dì nán zhāi wán
yuè yì shān yīn cuī shǎo fǔ



高臥南齋時,
高卧南斋时,
Gāo wò // nán zhāi shí,
開帷月初吐;
开帷月初吐;
Kāi wéi // yuè chū tù;
清輝淡水木,
清辉淡水木,
Qīng huī // dàn shuǐ mù,
演漾在窗戶。
演漾在窗户。
Yǎn yàng // zài chuāng hù.
苒苒幾盈虛?
苒苒几盈虚?
Rǎn rǎn // jǐ yíng xū?
澄澄變今古。
澄澄变今古。
Chéng chéng // biàn jīn gǔ.
美人清江畔,
美人清江畔,
Měi rén // qīng jiāng pàn,
是夜越吟苦。
是夜越吟苦。
Shì yè // yuè yín kǔ.
千里其如何?
千里其如何?
Qiān lǐ // qí rú hé?
微風吹蘭杜。
微风吹兰杜。
Wéi fēng // chuī lán dù.

Literal Translation

王昌齡
King Sunlight Years [=Wáng Chānglíng (698-756)]
同從弟南齋翫
月憶山陰崔少府
With cousin younger south study-room carefree
moon reflect-upon mountain dark high few prefecture
[mountain dark = Shanyin County; high = Cui (name); few prefecture = Minor Treasurer in Imperial China]


高臥南齋時,
Lofty lie-down south study time/when/period
開帷月初吐;
Open curtain moon beginning pop-out
清輝淡水木,
Clear shine/splendor weak water tree
[weak water = fresh water]
演漾在窗戶。
Perform swirl at window door
[window door = window]
苒苒幾盈虛?
Pass-time pass-time how-many? full empty
澄澄變今古。
Clear pure change current ancient
美人清江畔,
Pleasing man settle river boundary
[river boundary = riverbank]
是夜越吟苦。
This night [the more... the more] moan/sing hardship
千里其如何?
Thousand miles that/his if what
[if what = how? what way? when?]
微風吹蘭杜。
Small wind blow orchid/elegant birchleaf-pear-tree
[small wind = breeze, light wind]

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