Chinese Readings -

On Parting, Five Poems (4th)

On Parting, Five Poems (4th) ( 离思五首(其四)) was composed by Yuan Zhen (元稹) probably for his dead wife. The metaphorical expressions in the poem show the poet's loyalty and his yearning for his wife.  

It is very impressive that the poet expresses his love toward his wife in such an aphoristic manner. In particular, no other waters could impress the poet for he has seen the vast seas; having viewed majestic Witch Mountain, no other clouds can be more charming. One could feel the poet's sincere affection for his wife, and the plain language leaves a lingering aftertaste.  

The first two lines are well accepted by later literati. The poem is a masterpiece of the verses about mourning in Tang Dynasty.

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Additional Notes

离思五首(其四)On Parting, Five Poems (4th) 


céng jīng cāng hǎi nàn wéi shuǐ, 

Having seen the vast seas, hard to be impressed by the water.   


chú què wū shān bù shì yún。 

Except for those around Witch Mountain, no clouds are ever clouds.  


qǔ cì huā cóng lǎn huí gù,  

Strolling through flowers shrubs and not bothering to look back,


bàn yuán xiū dào bàn yuán jūn。 

Partly because of my Daoist practice and partly because of you.