Spring Visit – Bai Juyi

Remnants of sun ribbon the river–
half and half, black river red.
Third night, ninth month lovely hour;
pearled dew, bent bow moon.

A Foresaken Garden – Bai Juyi

I enter the court
Through the middle gate—
And my sleeve is wet with tears.

The flowers still grow
In the courtyard,
Though two springs have fled
Since last their master came.

The windows, porch, and bamboo screen
Are just as they always were,
But at the entrance to the house
Someone is missing—
You!

After Lunch – Bai Juyi

After eating lunch, I feel so sleepy.
Waking later, I sip two bowls of tea,

then notice shadows aslant, the sun
already low in the southwest again.

Joyful people resent fleeting days.
Sad ones can’t bear the slow yers.

It’s those with no joy and no sorrow—
they trust whatever this life brings.

Song Of The Palace – Bai Juyi

Tears utmost gauze cloth dream not succeed
Night deep before palace press song sound
Red cheek not old favour first cut
Slant lean on smoke cover sit arrive brightness
Her handkerchief all soaked in tears, she cannot dream,
In deepest night before the palace voices sing.
Her rosy cheeks aren’t old, but first love has been cut,
Leaning, wreathed in smoke, she sits until the dawn.

Sleeping on Horseback – Bai Juyi 

We had rode long and were still far from the inn;
My eyes grew dim; for a moment I fell asleep.

Under my right arm the whip still dangled;

In my left hand the reins for an instant slackened.

Suddenly I woke and turned to question my groom:

‘We have gone a hundred paces since you fell asleep.’

Body and spirit for a while had exchanged place;

Swift and slow had turned to their contraries.

For these few steps that my horse had carried me

Had taken in my dream countless aeons of time!

True indeed is that saying of Wise Men

‘A hundred years are but a moment of sleep.’