Cao Cao

To My Wine - Poem by Cao Cao

To my wine I sing
of the times of peace,
when officers shall not make calls at the door.
The ruler is bright and virtuous,
His ministers loyal and trustworthy.
Abiding by propriety and courtesy,
The people have no cause for lawsuits.

From three years of farming, nine years of stores,
The granaries overflow with grains
While the elderly have no need to labour.
Rainfall is abundant and of proper time,
The myriad of crops a great harvest yields.
From the highways are pulled back mighty steeds,
Their manure used to fertilize the fields.

From dukes down to viscounts,
all love the common people,
demoting the unworthy, raising up the good
As fathers and brothers they nurture the people.
Those who defy the law
are punished according to the severity;
though none is so selfish as to take roadside property.
The jails are all empty,
and on Solstice day no sentences are pronounced.

All live to eighty or ninety,
and pass away only of old age.
The ruler's compassion touches all creatures equally.

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, August 14, 2012

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