Tu Fu

(712-770 / Gong County / China)

Moonlit Night


Tonight at Fu-chou, this moon she watches
Alone in our room. And my little, far-off
Children, too young to understand what keeps me
Away, or even remember Chang'an. By now,

Her hair will be mist-scented, her jade-white
Arms chilled in its clear light. When
Will it find us together again, drapes drawn
Open, light traced where it dries our tears?

Submitted: Saturday, May 26, 2001

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Comments about this poem (Moonlit Night by Tu Fu )

  • Bronze Star - 2,463 Points John Richter (12/29/2014 11:51:00 AM)

    Having little knowledge of China or her history, I came to the same conclusion as Rajnish below. A beautiful love poem wishing for a wife/lover who from their room (somewhere far off - I assume she is with the children) looks upon the same moon that he sees.... I was able to discover that Fu-chau was most likely an ancient city name Fuzchau, and Chang'an represents an ancient capital. When I first saw a Chinese poem was chosen for today's read I was disappointed because I thought with the translation it would be dry and listless. Quite to the contrary I find this a very beautiful poem in English.... (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 189 Points Sophy Chen (12/29/2014 3:32:00 AM)

    who translated it? It is an old Chinese poem written by DU FU in Tang Dynasty and most Chinese readers love his poems. Where is its original one in Chinese language?

    Sophy Chen, a Chinese poetess and translator (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 12,005 Points Rajnish Manga (12/29/2014 3:11:00 AM)

    Great romantic poem in which the moonlight plays a cupid to ensure a union of two lovers. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 13,881 Points * Sunprincess * (12/29/2013 9:04:00 AM)

    .....you know how to set a scene beautifully...nice.. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Abdelrahman Elawad (12/30/2012 4:35:00 AM)

    Nice i loved it.. brilliant (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Arron Fowler (12/29/2012 3:48:00 PM)

    intresting poem ill give it 6/10 (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 0 Points Samantha Turner (12/29/2011 11:33:00 AM)

    Love it! : D. Read some of mine? Comment and Rate i appriciate it! (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Jeline Loh Jen-Li (12/29/2011 9:27:00 AM)

    I am a New Dreamer, Would like to have you invite you into the windows of my life.

    A New Beginning of a Deeper Friendship (Going on to Perfection)
    I remembered we were hanging out
    A week before Christmas
    You confessed that
    All you want for Christmas
    Is me
    I was happy to know that
    Then I playfully dared you
    If you were to express it publicly
    On your Facebook
    I will consider you
    Who knows after a great eventful Christmas
    You asked me
    Again for the third time in a year
    To be your girlfriend
    I was blushing on the outside
    While having butterflies on the inside
    I teasingly muttered if you were serious
    You haven’t posted it on your Facebook
    My intention was to see if he is man
    Man enough for me to consider
    I got quite anxious
    Wondered if he really would
    I changed my statement
    If you post it on Facebook
    I may not be your girlfriend
    If I would,
    It requires
    High commitment, High responsibility
    Not forgetting High Maintenance
    It is for a lifetime not a temporary basis
    Everything of yours will be mine
    While mine remains the same
    Truly, a Man he is!
    He was waiting for the right time
    To express how much he wanted me
    Lo and behold,11.58pm on a 2011 Christmas
    He posted his shout out to the world
    He held my hand and my fingers reacted
    While he said so now you are mine
    I replied the opposite from my hand language
    He then said you are!
    What makes you think so?
    Because you responded this time with
    With your hand gripping mine
    I asked why a day after Christmas?
    He said you wanted to put God first
    So I am the next prior to Jesus Christ
    But how can you propose without a flower?
    Then as I was searching for my house keys
    To head out of his car back home
    To call it a night
    Not just any night but a wonderful one
    Whilst he pulled out something from his car boot
    Hand it over to me
    A Bouquet of White Lilies
    Oh boy! I was really impressed by him!
    8 stalks of varieties of Oriental White Lilies
    It marks a new beginning
    Of a deeper friendship
    With two buds yet to blossom
    Going on to perfection. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Cs Vishwanathan (12/29/2010 1:17:00 AM)

    Kevin Straw says it right through and through. It is the work of a genius otherwise it won't interest us thirteen hundred years later. And his version is the better one for its emotional geometry. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Lee Cheng (12/29/2009 11:00:00 AM)

    今 夜 鄜 州 月 , 闺 中 只 独 看 。
    遥 怜 小 儿 女 , 未 解 忆 长 安 。
    香 雾 云 鬟 湿 , 清 辉 玉 臂 寒 。
    何 时 倚 虚 幌 , 双 照 泪 痕 干 。

    You know how did this poem come out?

    Tu Fu was caught by anti-government militants and gone to prison at that time.

    So, just think about his mood. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Kevin Straw (12/29/2009 8:16:00 AM)

    A poem of genius. But why cut it up so awkwardly? Would this be better?

    Tonight at Fu-chou, this moon watches alone in our room.
    And my little, far-off children,
    too young to understand what keeps me away,
    or even remember Chang'an.

    By now, her hair will be mist-scented,
    her jade-white arms chilled in its clear light.
    When will it find us together again, drapes drawn open,
    light traced where it dries our tears? (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Aira Olayvar (12/29/2009 5:02:00 AM)

    “Light traced where it dries our tears”… a lonesome poetry, full of longings… being apart from the family and loved one is truly sensed. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 26 Points Joseph Poewhit (12/29/2009 4:27:00 AM)

    Family and separation is well depicted (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 585 Points Ramesh T A (12/29/2009 1:50:00 AM)

    Pang of separation is indeed painful to bear! Human grief of this kind is very well expressed in this wonderful small poem by Tu Fu! (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Marama Kelly (12/29/2008 7:37:00 PM)

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, view, concept and heart with us all.
    Well worded, well expressed, with a good flow and rhythmn in it. Well done
    Many blessings to you (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Darlene Perry (12/29/2008 1:59:00 PM)

    Wonderfully written, a joy to read.

    Thank-you,

    Darlene (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Rita Hawkins (12/29/2008 10:58:00 AM)

    It can be tough for you and the kids.10. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Mark Smith (12/29/2004 6:32:00 AM)

    Time away from our children tough one (Report) Reply

Read all 18 comments »

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