composition in drunkenness

I’m drunk – my joy is boundless –
In every way better than not being drunk:
Each time I move it’s a dance,
Each time I speak it’s a poem.

Chang Yüeh


stating my aims

The tumbling dandelion puff leaves its roots,
drifts whirling, moving with the wind
Vast are the paths over the four seas,
on and on, how can they be traversed?
I would rather be the floating duckweed,
lodging myself in the clear pool.
I would take pleasure in the present—
what comes afterward is not known.

He Yan

to the tune of bodhisatva barbarians

Everyone is full of praise for the beauty of the South;
What can I do but end my days an exile in the South?
The spring river is bluer than the sky;
As it rains, in a painted barge I lie.

Bright as the moon is she who serves the wine;
Like frost or frozen snow her white wrists shine.
I’m not old yet: let me not depart!
For going home will surely break my heart!

Wen T’ing-yun

lonely as a cloud

On the empty mountains no one can be seen,
But human voices are heard to resound.
The reflected sunlight pierces the deep forest
And falls again upon the mossy ground.

Wang Wei

drinking alone with the moon

A pot of wine before me amidst the flowers:
I drink alone–there’s none to drink with me.
Lifting my cup to invite the brilliant moon,
I find that with my shadow we are three.
Though the moon does not know how to drink,
And shadow in vain follows me,
Let me their company for the moment,
For while it’s spring one should be care-free.
As I sing, the moon lingers about;
As I dance, my shadow seems to fly.
When still sober we enjoy ourselves together;
When rapt with wine we bid each other good-bye.
Let us form a friendship free from passions
And meet in yonder distant sky.

Li Po