I Hear the Cicadas on the Third Night of the Sixth Moon by Bai Ju Yi 六月三日夜聞蟬。白居易 (translation)

another translation from the Chinese by Mary Tang on her blog Life is But This

Life is But This 命

In Chinese the word Moon is synonymous with Month.  In fact it is the same character, 月 as the Chinese uses the lunar calendar. When a Tang Dynasty poet mentions the third day of the sixth month, we know that he was referring to summer, when the moon is new, as a full moon always occurs in the middle of the month.

六月三日夜聞蟬。白居易 (772-846)

荷香清露墜,柳動好風生。
微月初三夜,新蟬第一聲。
乍聞愁北客,靜聽憶東京。
我有竹林宅,別來蟬再鳴。
不知池上月,誰撥小船行?

I Hear the Cicadas on the Third Night of the Sixth Moon by Bai Ju Yi (772 – 846)

A clear dew falls on the fragrant lotus

As a good wind moves the willows

On the third night of a slight moon

New cicadas drum their first sound

The sudden sound saddens this northerner

who yearns for Dongjing as he quietly listens

I have a home with a bamboo forrest

Where the cicadas will call though I have gone

I…

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