Li He Poems

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Long Songs After Short Songs

Long songs have split the collar of my robe,
Short songs have cropped my whitening hair.
The king of Ch'in is nowhere to be seen,
So dawn and dusk fever burns in me.

Mount Wu Is High

A cluster of emeralds
Piercing high heaven!
Over the Great River's swelling waves
Spirits trail their mist.

Ballad Of The Savage Tiger

No one attacks it with a long lance,
No one plies a strong cross-bow.
Suckling its grandsons, rearing its cubs,
It trains them into savagery.

Su Hsiao-Hsiao's Tomb

Dew upon lonely orchids
Like tear-brimmed eyes.
No twining of love-knots,
Mist-wreathed flowers I cannot bear to cut.

A Ballad Of Heaven

The River of Heaven wheels round at night
Drifting the circling stars,
At Silver Bank*, the floating clouds
Mimic the murmur of water.

Butterflies Dancing

Willow catkins beat at the curtains,
Under sweltering spring clouds.
Screen of tortoise-shell
And dazzling clothes.

Butterflies from the eastern neighbour
Come fluttering to the west.
Today the young man has returned,
Riding his white steed.

Let's Drink Wine

Hsi and Ho gallop their six steeds
Days and nights leave us no leisure,
Chasing the crow to Mount Yan-zi's bamboos,
They flog their horses with a Coiling Peach whip.

General Lü

The valiant-hearted,
Riding alone on Scarlet Hare,
Out of the gates of Ch'in,
To weep at Gold Grain Mound

Songs Of The Brazen Immortal Bidding Farewell To Han

In the Mao-ling tomb lies the lad named Liu,
Guest of the autumn wind.
At night we hear his whinnying horse
At dawn not a hoof-print there.

Li Ping At The Vertical Harp

Silk from Wu, paulownia from Shu,
Strummed in high autumn,
In the white sky the frozen clouds
Falling, not floating.

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