Rendezvous by Sima Guang (translation)

I read about this Song Dynasty poet, Sima Guang, in primary school, on his heroic rescue of another child.  The child climbed up a great vat and fell into the water.  Amidst the chaos and panic Sima Guang picked up a rock and broke the vat, thus releasing the water and saving his friend from drowning.

The calm and quick thinking child grew up to have one of the finest minds in China.  He was a high ranking official at court, a historian and lexicographer, publishing a history of China and a dictionary.  It must have been during a rare moment of leisure that he wrote this poem while expecting a friend at midnight!

Rendezvous by Sima Guang 1019 – 1086

Tis the season of yellow plums and the rain is on everyone

Sounds of frogs are everywhere in ponds and green grasses

Half the night is over and no one appears at our rendezvous

Striking a chess piece idly I spark flowers of flame from a lamp

(c) Mary Tang 鄧許文蘭 2017

有約。司馬光

黃梅時節家家雨,青草池塘處處蛙。

有約不來過夜半,閑敲棋子落燈花。

 

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.

5 Responses to Rendezvous by Sima Guang (translation)

  1. arlingwoman says:

    I can almost smell the air in this one.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. taphian says:

    I really love all these Chinese poems, dear Mary. They have such a lot of atmosphere, wonderful. Have a nice day, regards Mitza

    Like

  3. A lovely story, Mary.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. That last line astounds. i got a bit of the scintillae on my shirt sleeve.

    Liked by 1 person

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