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(712-770 / Gong County / China)

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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 blossoms shrouding the riverside,
I stroll, listing dangerously, in full fear of spring.
Poems, wine -- even this profusely driven, I endure.
Arrangements for this old, white-haired man can wait.

A deep river, two or three houses in bamboo quiet,
And such goings on: red blossoms glaring with white!
Among spring's vociferous glories, I too have my place:
With a lovely wine, bidding life's affairs bon voyage.

Looking east to Shao, its smoke filled with blossoms,
I admire that stately Po-hua wineshop even more.
To empty golden wine cups, calling such beautiful
Dancing girls to embroidered mats -- who could bear it?

East of the river, before Abbot Huang's grave,
Spring is a frail splendor among gentle breezes.
In this crush of peach blossoms opening ownerless,
Shall I treasure light reds, or treasure them dark?

At Madame Huang's house, blossoms fill the paths:
Thousands, tens of thousands haul the branches down.
And butterflies linger playfully -- an unbroken
Dance floating to songs orioles sing at their ease.

I don't so love blossoms I want to die. I'm afraid,
Once they are gone, of old age still more impetuous.
And they scatter gladly, by the branchful. Let's talk
Things over, little buds ---open delicately, sparingly.

Submitted: Saturday, May 26, 2001
Edited: Saturday, May 26, 2001

Read poems about / on: spring, river, crazy, dance, sorrow, beautiful, house, friend, red, alone, fear, dark, light, poem, butterfly, girl

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  • Lorraine Margueritte Gasrel Black (4/1/2014 3:08:00 PM)

    I guess life never changes no matter what century we live in....WINE! ! ! ! ! and fun! ! ! ! great poem and a the chance it gave me to view a window in his time on earth...

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  • Is It Poetry (5/10/2013 1:58:00 PM)

    And the grave impatient it waits.
    Butterflies and daffodils,
    each soul that knows it's place....iip

  • Warren Falcon (5/10/2013 10:24:00 AM)

    Tu Fu loved his wine, his dancing girls, the moon...and spring blossoms always woo an old Fu's wino heart and ancient groin so he purloins some music and makes some lovely image-poems full of nostalgia and a sweetness toward nature that we Westerners can only dream of...old Tu Fu has difficulty being nature himself, listing dangerously, listening to Orioles sing easily where his own singing is not so easy for the song derives from his all too human gets Tu Fu into some luxuriance but even that overwhelms him, thus:

    Let's talk
    Things over, little buds - -open delicately, sparingly.

  • Bobby Wynn (5/10/2013 7:10:00 AM)

    Great poem about growing old, getting drunk, stopping by a couple brothels, taking in the scenery, Fear of dying an experience unto itself, and he wants it to be just as beautiful as this life. The fact that his old friend enjoys wine also may lead to another brothel.

  • Gajanan Mishra (12/19/2012 4:30:00 AM)

    I don't so love blossoms. I want to die. I'm afraid. thanks.

  • Kevin Patrick (5/10/2012 8:26:00 PM)

    I love the rustic imagery in this, its such a pleasent read, the blossoms are wounderful symbolism of the state one sees of youth when one is older, the bitterness of knowing one can never feel the same feeling attained in their aura, and feeling desperatly alone

  • Carlos Echeverria (5/10/2012 10:59:00 AM)

    The nature imagery is so finely and exquisitely rendered, with a soulful, beatific power which is life-affirming.

  • Joanne Reed (5/10/2012 4:32:00 AM)

    Yeh nice im new to site but i like poems but im more into romance poems but ths is good x

  • Juan Olivarez (5/10/2011 8:00:00 AM)

    Kevin Straw made the point that the same old poems are being recycled a year to the day, the past few days(I have been on this site a year now) I see what he was talking about. Some new blood might be appropriate.

  • Gone Away (5/10/2010 5:32:00 PM)

    This is what poetry does for me, captures a moment long gone and even in translation makes it as real and relevant as if it happened in my own life. Except he could write it with skill and beauty!

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