Sent to Ch’ao, the Palace Reviser by Meng Hao-jan

You polish words in rue-scented libraries,
and I live in bamboo-leaf gardens, a recluse

wandering every day the same winding path
home to rest in the quiet, no noise anywhere.

A bird soaring the heights can choose a tree,
but the hedge soon tangles impetuous goats.

Today, things seen becoming thoughts felt:
this is where you start forgetting the words.

translated by David Hinton

Hsiang-yang Travels: Thinking of Meng Hao-jan by Po Chü-i

Emerald Ch’u mountain peaks and cliffs,
emerald Han River flowing full and fast:

Meng’s writing survives here, its elegant
ch’i now facets of changing landscape.

But today, chanting the poems he left us
and thinking of him, I find his village

clear wind, all memory of him vanished.
Dusk light fading, Hsiang-yang empty,

I look south to Deer-Gate Mountain, haze
lavish, as if some fragrance remained,

but his old mountain home is lost there:
mist thick and forests all silvered azure.

translated by David Hinton