Ho Xuan Huong

(1772 - 1822 / Nghệ An Province)

Weaving at Night


Lampwick turned up, the room glows white.
The looms moves easily all night long

as feet work and push below.
Nimbly the shuttle flies in and out,

wide or narrow, big or small, sliding in snug.
Long or short, it glides out smoothly.

Girls who do it right, let it soak.

Here is another translation of the same poem:

Light turned on, it is found such a white,
The stalk moves slightly and repeatedly all night.

Pushing with the feet, but lightly release,
Shuttle passing through brings joy and ease.

Large or narrow, small or big they all fit,
Long and short, size and form so be it.

To make it best, girl needs to soak it with care .
The cloth color won't fade before three whole years.

Submitted: Friday, April 16, 2010

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