Wagons rattling and banging,
horses neighing and snorting,
conscripts marching, each with bow and arrows at his hip,
fathers and mothers, wives and children, running to see them off--
so much dust kicked up you can't see Xian-yang Bridge!
And the families pulling at their clothes, stamping feet in anger,
blocking the way and weeping--
ah, the sound of their wailing rises straight up to assault heaven.
And a passerby asks, 'What's going on?'
The soldier says simply, 'This happens all the time.
From age fifteen some are sent to guard the north,