On the Gate-tower at Yo-chou by Tu Fu

I had always heard of Lake Tung-t’ing–
And now at last I have climbed to this tower.
With Wu country to the east of me and Ch’u to the south,
I can see heaven and earth endlessly floating.
. . .But no word has reached me from kin or friends.
I am old and sick and alone with my boat.
North of this wall there are wars and mountains—
And here by the rail how can I help crying?

translated by Witter Bynner & Kiang Kang-hu

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