Confucius

(551– 479 ( BC) / China)

A Festal Ode Complimenting An Officer - Poem by Confucius

On dashed my four steeds, without halt, without stay,
Though toilsome and winding from Chow was the way.
I wished to return--but the monarch's command
Forbade that his business be done with slack hand;
And my heart was with sadness oppressed.

On dashed my four steeds; I ne'er slackened the reins.
They snorted and panted--all white, with black manes.
I wished to return, but our sovereign's command
Forbade that his business be done with slack hand;--
And I dared not to pause or to rest.

Unresting the Filial doves speed in their flight,
Ascending, then sweeping swift down from the height,
Now grouped on the oaks. The king's high command
Forbade that his business be done with slack hand;--
And my father I left, sore distressed.

Unresting the Filial doves speed in their flight,
Now fanning the air and anon they alight
On the medlars thick grouped. But our monarch's command
Forbade that his business be done with slack hand;--
Of my mother I thought with sad breast.

My four steeds I harnessed, all white and black-maned,
Which straight on their way, fleet and emulous strained.
I wished to return; and now venture in song
The wish to express, and announce how I long
For my mother my care to attest.


Comments about A Festal Ode Complimenting An Officer by Confucius

  • Susan Williams Susan Williams (1/18/2016 4:20:00 PM)

    I loved the urgency this poem engendered in me. My heart started pounding with the beat of those horses' hooves. I cannot help it- -I started fretting about those horses' health. Was he going to drive them to their death? Would they be wind-broken when journey was done? Would he not fulfill his mission in time and be punished by death? . (Report) Reply

    11 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • * Sunprincess * (1/18/2016 8:01:00 AM)

    ........an amazing poem with vivid imagery...an officer following the king's command ★ (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, September 18, 2010



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