Author's Note: It is not so much that I have been "translating" the poetry of the Chinese masters as I have been re-imagining it. I don't speak or read Chinese, but I do read as many English translations of Chinese poems as possible and I can often see poems still locked inside those translations trying to get out. What I have been doing is finding those poems and setting them free in a way that works as poetry for me.
After Tu Mu's
Well-made wine and autumn rain. A cold house among the leaves. The lonely man will sleep a lot, but first he pours another cup.
After Yan Shu's"Last Year"
On this old porch the same cup of wine. The same melody with new words. The same weather we had last year. The same sun setting. It also rises. When will I see you? The flowers keep fading. The same swallows keep returning. On the same path through my garden I linger with the same loneliness.
After Meng Hao-Jan's
"Seeing Off Du Shisi
South Of The River"
You travel by boat when the water is high. At sunset you wonder where you will moor under a sky so wide it breaks your heart.
©2022 Tom Montag
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