To Hua Qing by Du Fu (translation)

One of my former calligraphy students told me that she would like to attempt this poem (set as lyrics to a song), a satire by the Tang Dynasty poet, Du Fu.  It was meant as a veiled warning to a colleague for flouting the Imperial code by playing music that is the privilege of royalty.

To Hua Qing by Du Fu (712-770)

The sound of flutes ribbon through the town like silk

Carried by currents into the river and into the clouds

Such music should only go to Heaven

Seldom woven into lives of mortals

(c) Mary Tang 鄧許文蘭 2017

贈花卿。杜甫

錦城絲管日紛紛

半入江風半入雲

此曲衹應天上去

人間能得幾回聞

About Mary Tang

An urban orchardist everyday, a volunteer regularly, a poet sometimes and a blogger since March 2015. I travel when I can. Food is a constant.
This entry was posted in Poetry, Poetry Translation and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to To Hua Qing by Du Fu (translation)

  1. gaiainaction says:

    I love this one more than ever, it flows beautifully and speaks to the soul.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sunshine Jansen says:

    Extra soft spot in my heart for this one as playing music above one’s station is basically the subject of my novel-in-progress! A little unconscious 加油 I will take gladly! :)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Music has always be a search for the most sublime, i could get used to the music of Immortals.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. arlingwoman says:

    Oh. Goodness. So glad to be born in the time and place I was! Not to have music…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. taphian says:

    wonderful, I can really feel it, dear Mary, regards Mitza

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Susanne says:

    The imagery of the first line is glorious!

    Liked by 1 person

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