A Farewell Song Of White Clouds by Li Po (Li Bai)

Leonard Durso

The white clouds float over the mountains of Chu–
As over the mountains of Chin.
Everywhere the white clouds will follow you on.

They will follow you on everywhere–
With you they will enter the Chu mountains,
And cross the waters of the Hsiang.

Yonder across the waters of the Hsiang,
There is a cloak of ivy to wear,
And you may lie in a bed of white clouds.

Go swiftly home, O my friend!

translated by Shigeyoshi Obata

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on hotel advertising

what the junior suite was supposed to have but doesn’t:
air conditioning
ceiling fan
safety deposit box
ironing facilities (???)
landmark view (though maybe those buildings/stores pass for landmarks)
washing machine

what was not advertised but  the suite has:
a Jacuzzi

could that be considered “a wash”?

Song: Thoughts of a Traveler on the Chikuma River by Shimazaki Toson

Leonard Durso

Yesterday it was this way too–
today again it will be like this.
Why fret your life away
forever worrying about tomorrow?

How many times have I gone down into the valley
where dreams of glory and decay still linger,
seen the uncertain drift of the river waves,
sand-laden water that circles and returns?

Ah, what is the old castle saying?
What do the waves along the shore reply?
Be still and consider the ages gone by–
a hundred years are like yesterday

Chikuma River willows are hazy,
spring is shallow, the water flows on.
Alone I wander over the rocks,
binding my sorrows to this shore

translated by Hiroaki Sato & Burton Watson

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Oh Gaziantep, Oh Turkey

I ate pistachios
in Gaziantep
city of heroes
had baklava
and favored coffee
in pewter cups
ate kıyma kebab
in an Ottoman style restaurant
wandered through Zincirli Bazaar
and Bakırcılar çarşısi
fingering the copperware
beheld the mosaics
in the museum
wandered the ramparts
of Gaziantep Castle
where local warriors
fought the French
in 1920
for Turkish independence
was treated with warmth
and kindness
by the people
on its ancient streets
those streets now
soaked in blood
Oh Gaziantep
Oh Turkey
I mourn for thee