Francis William Lauderdale Adams

(27 September 1862 – 4 September 1893)

A Glimpse Of China


I
In a Sampan
(Min River, Fo Kien)
Up in the misty morning,
Up past the gardened hills,
With the rhythmic stroke of the rowers,
While the blue deep pales and thrills!
Past the rice-fields green low-lying,
Where the sea-gull's winging down
From the fleets of junks and sampans
And the ancient Chinese Town!
II
In a Chair
(Foo-cbow)
From the bright and blinding sunshine,
From the whirling locust's song,
Into the dark and narrow fissures
Of the streets I am borne along.
Here and there dusky-beaming
A sun-shaft broadens and drops
On the brown bare crowd slow-passing,
The crowd of the open shops.
We move on over the bridges
With their straight-hewn blocks of stone,
And their quaint grey animal figures,
And the booths the hucksters own.
Behind a linen awning
Sits an ancient wight half-dead,
And a little dear of a girl is
Examining — his head.
On a bended bamboo shouldered,
Bearing a block of stone,
Two worn-out Coolies half-naked
Utter their grunting groan.
Children, almond-eyed beauties,
Impossibly mangy curs,
Take part in the motley stream of
Insouciant passengers.
This is the Dream, the Vision
That comes to me and greets —
The Vision of Retribution
In the labyrinthine streets.
III
'Caste'
These Chinese toil, and yet they do not starve,
And they obey, and yet they are not slaves.
It is the 'free-born' fuddled Englishmen
Who grovel rotting in their living graves.
These Chinese do not fawn with servile lips;
They lift up equal eyes that ask and scan.
Their degradation has escaped at least
That choicest curse of all — the Gentleman!
IV
Over the Samovar
(Foo-chow)
'Yes, I used always to think
That you Russians knew
How to make the good drink
As none others do.
'And I thought moreover,
(Not with the epicures),
You might search the world over
For such Women as yours.
'In both these matters now
I perceive I was right,
And I really can't tell you how
Much I delight
'In my third (Thanks, another cup!)
Idea of the fun,
When your Country gets up
And follows the sun!
'And just as in Europe, see,
There's a Conqueror Nation,
So why not in Asia be
A like jubilation?
'Taught as well as organized,
The eternal Coolie,
From being robbed and despised,
Takes to cutting throats duly!
'But — please, don't be flurried;
For I daresay by then
You'll be comfortably buried,
Ladies and gentlemen!
'No more, thanks! I must be going!
I'm so glad to have made this
Opportunity of knowing
Some more Russian ladies!'

Submitted: Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

What do you think this poem is about?



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (A Glimpse Of China by Francis William Lauderdale Adams )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. After Reading the Song of Hiawatha, Effie Waller Smith
  2. Two Things, Taurai, George Pfumbi
  3. I listened, I listened, I listened, arshad arshad
  4. Preparation, Effie Waller Smith
  5. News York City, Ima Ryma
  6. Always Money, Taurai, George Pfumbi
  7. Marbles and Stones, Krishna Shivkumar yadav
  8. I Will Not Say 'Ave', Trong Phan
  9. Magical Love, Taurai, George Pfumbi
  10. Postcard, Krishna Shivkumar yadav

Poem of the Day

poet Charles Stuart Calverley

He stood, a worn-out City clerk —
Who'd toil'd, and seen no holiday,
For forty years from dawn to dark —
Alone beside Caermarthen Bay.
...... Read complete »

   

Trending Poems

  1. On the Pulse of Morning, Maya Angelou
  2. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  3. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  4. You Will Forever Be In My Heart, Crystal Piatt
  5. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  6. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  7. Television, Roald Dahl
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
  9. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  10. A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe

Trending Poets

[Hata Bildir]