from Visiting Gold Mountain Temple by Su Tung-p’o

I went back to bed puzzled, uncertain what I’d seen—
not human, not ghostly, what could it have been?
All these river hills, and I don’t go home to hills of my own—
the river god sent this wonder to chide my stupidity!
Apologies to the river god, but right now what can I do?
If in the end I don’t return to homeland fields, let him punish me as he will!

translated by Burton Watson

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