JIANG JIN JIU (WINE WILL BE SERVED)
BY LI BAI (TANG DYNASTY –701-762 AD)
TRANSLATED BY WONKY WIZARD
Have you not seen
The downpour into the Yellow River, a heavenly scene
Its torrent gushes into the ocean
And the return stream not reckon
(Have you not seen)
The weariness in your parents’ white lock
A clear reflection of aging in shock.
At the dawn of life, as black as silk, shines
At dusk, shows snowy lines.
When happy opportunities appear
Fulfill them here and dear
Do not let our golden cups emptied of wine
Under such bright moonshine.
The talent I am blissfully endowed
My skill will facilitate what I have avowed
A thousand teals of gold may be squandered
Its value, in kinds and ways, will be recovered
Gastronomical delight of beef and lamb is served
A binge of three hundred cups will be observed.
To Master Cen,
To Scholar Dangiu
Wine is now served
Do not be reserved
I shall sing to both soon
Attentively, your ears, attune
Bells, drums and rare jade are not worthy or grand,
Wish we are forever drunk and in dreamland
In ancient times, lonely sages are not remembered.
Only wine drinkers have their names sculptured.
In the past, Prince Chen held a grand banquet in his palace
In pursuit of hedonistic indulgence par excellence
At a cost of ten thousand silver pieces
For a mere dipperful of wine dashes
As your host, money is never in doubt
To procure more wine for our bout.
My spotted horse and fur worth a thousand
My son to trade and buy wine on errand
Together we shall drown away
The million miseries of bygone days.
NB Apology for any mistranslation, for I am not chinese educated.