Treasure Island

Li Po

(701-762 / Chu / Kazakhstan)

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Drinking Alone


I take my wine jug out among the flowers
to drink alone, without friends.

........................
........................
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  • John S (4/1/2014 12:47:00 PM)

    I love this poem! I would like to learn more about different styles of poems and different terminology. This poem is almost surreal. He's drinking with the moon, the flowers, and his shadow. He's enticing the moon with his ale. I guess it's called personification when you talk about the moon and your shadow like they're real people. This poem really takes you on a beautiful trip. The moon and his shadow are dancing together and having a splendid time, and when they part ways, they'll meet again in the milky way. Li Po would have been a fun guy to drink with. (Report) Reply

  • Besa Dede (3/30/2014 3:35:00 PM)

    Beautiful poem. Li Po has a gentle way of describing even a simple event such as drinking in solitude :) (Report) Reply

  • Birgitta Abimbola Heikka (3/30/2014 10:31:00 AM)

    They say it's not good to drink alone. I like the way the poem ended. My favorite verses are the last 3- When I sing the moon dances.... (Report) Reply

  • Ramesh Rai (3/30/2014 8:38:00 AM)

    An emotion write of Li Po will certainly attract the new generation to mend. (Report) Reply

  • Joe Hughes (3/30/2013 6:10:00 AM)

    A great discovery for me.
    Thank you LiPo though you lived so long ago.
    Joe Hughes on Poemhunter and at joehughes.org.uk (Report) Reply

  • Shahzia Batool (3/30/2012 9:01:00 AM)

    When the soul selects her own society, solitude turns into multitude......it's very beautiful...... (Report) Reply

  • Naida Nepascua Supnet (10/18/2010 8:46:00 AM)

    i remember in college when i found out about lipo, i collected his poems, i remember this one because i think it is funny, i love the poem and the poet. He is immortal. (Report) Reply

  • Terence George Craddock (3/30/2010 6:46:00 AM)

    Li Po chooses beautiful natural surroundings and sits among flowers to drink and contemplate long before a generation of flower power take this conception to symbolize a desire for peace and love not war. Shadow and moon are a powerful influence at night in settings of unique interactive meditation. A challenging theme for an artists charcoal oils or a poets pen.
    'We share life's joys when sober.
    Drunk, each goes a separate way.'
    True often when drinking companions are few, but drunken football or rugby teams, worse still when staunch fans of major domestic or international teams, get out of control; suddenly the energy of an earthquake or title wave can be unleashed with amazing force in confined places. Alcohol and friends are poetry of enticing potential. (Report) Reply

  • Ramesh T A (3/30/2010 2:38:00 AM)

    Wine effect with the influence of Moon though taken alone will surely make one meet Moon, shadow and self in the Milky Way! A wise way to enjoy with Nature! (Report) Reply

  • Joseph Poewhit (3/30/2009 2:06:00 PM)

    Finding a reason for drinking is the keyword. Some drink for drunkenness, while some wine and flowers beauty, and a silent friend, we find a reason. Seeking a beauty, in the flowing world of wines intoxication. Elevated, insightful things appear. BUT, to lie in an alleyway with an empty bottle - WELL LI PO WAS RIGHT. (Report) Reply

  • Is It Poetry (3/30/2009 2:01:00 PM)

    It is a terrible shame that thier are not
    hundreds of these simple thoughts
    of friend ship inside this one head..iip
    on paper... (Report) Reply

  • Michael Pruchnicki (3/30/2009 10:22:00 AM)

    Prissy comments about this poem in English translation having nothing to offer an expert reader and poet like Straw leaves me in dismay and feigned sorrow! What a bleeding pity for us all! He prefers classical music in the raw to the diluted versions on his iPod, mercy me! God help us, but I'll take a drunken Chinese poet any time to a pretentious wannabe nattering on about communication and translation and all that! (Report) Reply

  • Kevin Straw (3/30/2009 7:05:00 AM)

    This does not do anything for me. Perhaps it's better in the original. I have an idea that translations are always less than the originals. Language, perhaps, contains elements of communication that are lost in translation - like classical music is 'thinned out' on downloading to an iPod. (Report) Reply

  • Bill Thomas (3/30/2009 3:02:00 AM)

    One of my favourites of all time... have a look at my version, 'Off His Face In The Flower Border', if you like. (Report) Reply

  • Albert Wong (10/15/2008 11:26:00 PM)

    The poet, Tahir Baban, I think you haven't read Li Po poems before, he had created over ten thousands Chinese poems in his life. He is the best poet in China, he did the poetry very, very successful, the Emperor had ordered his queen to rub his shoes, the Prime Minister to prepare ink for him to write poems.Who had this power to draw the Emperor to do so? It was of course for Li Po only. This piece 'Drink alone' was his final poem before died by chasing the moon into the lake's water.He was a very great poet. (Report) Reply

  • Coach Roth (3/30/2008 3:35:00 AM)

    Sorry, but I could write a thesis on the meaning of this poem...read it again carefully, the words alone should make you dance...but if you miss the dichotomy of being with friends and being alone...sharing spirits both alcoholic and ethereal...and the joy of loving one's self while not forsaking the world...then maybe you can't dance. Coach (Report) Reply

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