Category Archives: Du Fu (712 – 770 / Henan Province / China)

Du Fu was a prominent Chinese poet of the Tang Dynasty. Along with Li Bai (Li Bo), he is frequently called the greatest of the Chinese poets. His greatest ambition was to serve his country as a successful civil servant, but he proved unable to make the necessary accommodations. His life, like the whole country, was devastated by the An Lushan Rebellion of 755, and his last 15 years were a time of almost constant unrest.

Poem – To Bi Siyao

Once stately figures in the art of rhyme, Now sadly down at heels, our careers in ruin, Regarded by our servants with disdain, We are grown old and gray before our time. Yet in your joyful, carefree company, The most … Continue reading

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Poem – Thoughts Of Li Po From The World’s End

Here at the world’s end the cold winds are beginning to blow. What messages have you for me, my master? When will the poor wandering goose arrive? The rivers and lakes are swollen with autumn’s waters. Art detests a too … Continue reading

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Poem – Twenty-Two Rhymes To Left-Prime-Minister Wei

Boys in fancy clothes never starve, but Confucian scholars often find their lives in ruin. Please listen to my explanation, Sir, I, your humble student, ask permission to state my case. When I was a younger Du Fu I was … Continue reading

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Poem – Alone, Looking For Blossoms Along The River

The sorrow of riverside blossoms inexplicable, And nowhere to complain — I’ve gone half crazy. I look up our southern neighbor. But my friend in wine Gone ten days drinking. I find only an empty bed. A thick frenzy of … Continue reading

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Poem – Snow at Changsha

Out of the north the snow Is assaulting Changsha: Its clouds over Hunan go (Where few snows are): A myriad homes makes cold Far borne on the gale With scattered leaflets old Where raindrops hail, Not grown to flake-like flowers. … Continue reading

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Poem – Newlywed’s Departure

Chinese vines climb up low hemp plants; the tendrils cannot stretch very far. To marry a daughter to a drafted man is worse than abandoning her by roadside. “I just did my hair up as a married woman, haven’t even … Continue reading

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Poem – The Mocking Bird

What! Is the mocking bird come? The Spring, he comes to say, The Spring is here today. All sounds, all words he knows. His feathers preen how he will, He is the same bird still. Where flowers most thickly screen, … Continue reading

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