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Hi friends, today I would like to introduce a new Chinese classical poem, Wang Chun -- Late Spring, by Tang Dynasty(618 - 907) poet Han Yu (768 - 827).
This poem is famous because it has given people much inspiration by writing about a beautiful natural phenomenon of late spring in simple language ? The grass and the trees know that spring will soon be over and they are contending to be the brightest with their most beautiful colors, sweetest fragrances and all their other features. The catkin and the elm seeds don¡¯t have such imagination or creativity; they only know how to fly all over the sky like snow...
Of these simple words, different people will have a different understanding because of their different life experiences and backgrounds.
We can see that this poem expresses admiration for the smartness of the grass and the trees -- they do their best to bring people a most beautiful spring, and tease the catkin and elm seeds -- they are only flying in the sky like snow and do not know how to show the world something more beautiful.
We can also see that this poem not only expresses admiration for the grass and the trees, but also for the catkin and elm seeds -- they do their best to accompany the grass and the trees, by filling the sky with their small white seeds they serve as a foil against which the beauty of the grass and trees stand out... just as some ¡°little people¡± serve as a foil against which the "big people" stand out...
To people who are very positive, maybe they would like to learn from the grass and the trees and make the most of their limited time to live and work and to make their lives as bright and beautiful as possible. To people who have different attitudes to life, maybe they would like to learn from the catkin and elm seeds and not care for material things, such as money and high position, but just to fly high in the sky to see the entire world, to see how others live their lives...
I think, if you know that the poet Han Yu was the greatest ideologist of the Tang Dynasty, then you will not be surprised that this little poem can be understood in so many ways...
I have written a piece of music to accompany the poem and I do hope that this article, together with my music and singing will be a little help to you in learning more about Chinese culture and in your Chinese language learning... :-)
MAIN MEANING OF THE POEMLISTEN TO SHIRLEY PLAY & SING THE POEM :
The grass and the trees know that spring will soon be over,
They are contending to be the brightest with their most beautiful colors, sweetest fragrance and all their other features.
The catkin and elm seeds have no such imaginative power and creativity,
they know only to fly in the all over the sky like white snow...
NEW WORDS AND RONUNCIATION :
Please click on any Chinese character that you need help with to see its Chinese pinyin, pronunciation and meaning, and then follow me in reading it.
CHINESE CHARACTERS :
LISTEN TO SHIRLEY PLAY & SING THE POEM :
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Written, Sung, Translated and Recorded on Sun, July 16, 2006