Monthly Archives: May 2017

POEM TRANSLATION ON SHANDONG TRAVEL DAY 1 TO 3

POEM TRANSLATION ON SHANDONG TRAVEL DAY 1 TO 3

 

HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 199:

 

 FOOD FOR NON HUNGRY

非飢餓食品

 

dislike food wastage

反食物浪

hungry does not get the food

餓人得不到食物

saved for own good health

為救自健康

 

DAY 3 SHANDONG TRAVEL:

CONFUCIAN HOME, TEMPLE AND TOMB

孔子的家,庙和墓

 

talented teacher

有天才教師

homage to an empty tomb

向一個空墓致敬

a sage after death

死後的聖人

 

HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 201:

 

BETTER DEAD THAN ALIVE

死比活更好

 

from hut to mansion

茅舍到大宅

dead sage is less threatening

智者死去少威迫

safer from altar

安全由祭

 

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/TANKA ECHOES 58:

 

 UNIVERSAL HATS AND SHOES

普遍帽子和鞋子

 

Kan was inspired by the photo in Day 3, and wrote a haiku in response:

 

Sage stuckfast agog

智者急動的

Too closing walls immoral

栏關閉不道德

Baggage and the cap

行李和盖帽

 

I respond in a Tanka Echoes 58:

 UNIVERSAL SHOES AND HATS:

 

build high walls to climb

攀爬高墙筑

kings love power, lust and land

帝王爱權,贪土地

all wear same sized shoes

全是同碼鞋

citizens and kings differ

公民與君王相異

feeling and coloured mind hats

感覺彩色心灵帽

 

MALAYSIAN HAIKU ECHOES 202:

CUTE CUISINE

小巧菜

Claudia responded to pictures on Lu Cuisine thus:

Dishes incognito

私房的菜肴

confront wary travellers

面對游客要緊慎

missing home cooking

思念家烹飪

 This is my response:

 

strange food as a scene

陌生菜風味

rough ride on odd taste and smell

古怪味道和嗅味

nostalgic craving

怀鄉的热望

 

DAY 4 SHANDONGTRAVEL: TAIAN

DAY 4 SHANDONGTRAVEL: TAIAN

 

MALAYSIAN TANKA ECHOES 50: MANDATE

 

leader deified

monarch pleaded at jade peak

mandate at foothills

destiny changes with time

great haven under heaven

 

We had dinner at Taierzhuan; the shop with lots of large over hanging paper lanterns,  with words depicting a rest place in Chinese. After dinner we spent a night at the Grand Barony Hotel at Zaozhuang. It was a five star hotel, but it’s shine was somewhat diminished over the years, judging by lack of maintenance. However the room was large clean and comfortable. After a good breakfast, the bus took us to Taian, a three and half hour drive. It was lunch hour, and we were driven to a Mao Restaurant. Promotion meals were displayed at the entrance, and was real cheap. On entry was a gold plated bust of Chairman Mao, with joss and urn. It inspired me to composed the above tanka after the trip. The restaurant was decorated with Mao’s poetry, calligraphy and quotation. The non-smoking sign with a picture of Mao above was amusing, as the Foundation Father was a heavy chained smoker.  Food at Mao Restaurant was fairly good, at least at par with the good image of the leader. He was widely respected by the Chinese people, for, without him, modern China would not be what it was today.  I asked the local guide to name me a great Chinese thinker in modern times, and she mentioned her revered Chairman Mao. Well, he was an original thinker, thinking outside the box, but he lacked experience in good governance. Another thinker, Teng, brought China into newer heights, with capitalism in a locality and then the economy spread nationally. Today President Xi brought China to even greater heights. Corruption has been pandemic in China over the dynasties, worsen as the economy arisen. How would China cope, if it’s president, vice presidents , governors, judges, generals, were all corrupt? It would need separation of power, check and balances, and a radical facilitative mind set change; not only for leaders, but also for the people in the street. It’s not an easy task, even America and the West were far from right. History would testify whether the current leaders could achieve this, and that would be the envy for the world.

DAY 3 SHANDONG TRAVEL: TAIERZHUANG, ZAOZHUAN

DAY 3 SHANDONG TRAVEL: TAIERZHUANG, ZAOZHUAN

 

 

MALAYSIANTANKA ECHOES 59: DRUKEN DREAM

 

walk past bygone lanes

ancient town destroyed by war

pray peace will prevail

dream of wetland lotuses

beer binging with goddesses

 

Taierzhuang (Zaozhuang) village was named as a “First Village” by the emperor, due to its socio-economic progress and grandeur then. It was connected by the Grand Canal, linking Beijing and Hangzhou, but the Zaozhuang section was now not navigable. It was first built during the Qin Dynasty ((221-207 BC) and developed further by Han Dynasty (206-220AD), then by the Ming and Song Dynasty.

During the War, the Germans took control of whole of Shandong, and passed over to the Japanese. In 1938, the Japanese invaded the town and met with defeat by the Kumintang army. The Japanese did best in their scorched earth policy of destroying all in China, killed and burned the whole beautiful town. In 2008, the town was rebuild, basing on Ming and Song architectures and design, and was regarded as  a Cultural and Heritage site.

The attraction was the Beichang River scenic area, with its beautiful wetland, when the lotuses were in full blossom, with the willows, peaches and apricots, contesting along the canals.

MALAYSIAN HAIKU ECHOES 202: CUTE CUISINE

MALAYSIAN HAIKU ECHOES 202: CUTE CUISINE

 

Claudia responded to pictures on Lu Cuisine thus:

 

Dishes incognito

confront wary travellers

missing home cooking

 

This is my response:

 

strange food as a scene

rough ride on odd taste and smell

nostalgic craving

 

 

The peony was in full bloom in Henan. We thought it was a black and white chicken soup, but when the waitress broke the shell, we realised it was a small cooked turtle. Many of us refused to partake that dish, but I drank the soup.

 

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/TANKA ECHOES 58: UNIVERSAL HATS AND SHOES

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/TANKA ECHOES 58: UNIVERSAL HATS AND SHOES

 

Kan was inspired by the photo in Day 3, and wrote a haiku in response:

 

Sage stuckfast agog

Too closing walls immoral

Baggage and the cap

 

I respond in a Tanka Echoes 58: UNIVERSAL SHOES AND HATS:

 

build high walls to climb

kings love power, lust and land

all wear same sized shoes

citizens and kings differ

feeling and coloured mind hats

 

Her poster declared she was goddess; mine meant to be god.  I don’t know this young lass’s name. She was sporting enough to share a photo with me.

DAY 3 SHANDONG TRAVEL: CONFUCIAN MANSION

DAY 3 SHANDONG TRAVEL: CONFUCIAN MANSION

MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 201: BETTER DEAD THAN ALIVE

 

from hut to mansion

dead sage is less threatening

safer from altar

 

Note: The title appeared cold and crude, but hindsight history showed leaders were sometimes better to died earlier than late. Confucius (Cong is surname, fu zi means an eminent teacher; his actual name was Cong Qiu, for the crown of his head appeared as mound.) was poor and lived in shabby huts, despite he was given a minor post in his country, Lu, then. The emperor delivered an excellent eulogy, praising the teacher only upon his death. That was the irony of life. The temple was located near the mansion, where he was born. On his death, his main disciples were worried about the site of his tomb, as the whole region was in war. So three thousand disciples planted a tree each to look like a forest (lin, homophonic with ling, meaning mausoleum). Today there are more than 20,000 trees, covering more than 200 hectares, over 83 generations to date. It is the single largest cemetery for a single Cong family, not only in China, but in the world. Some of the descendants  (47th) had migrated to Korea, giving the Koreans the illusion that the teacher was originally from there.

 

The mansion was first built in 1308 during the Song Dynasty, re-erected after fire destruction in 1388 in Ming Dynasty. The area was about 16 hectares, divided into three parts, with nine courtyards and 463 halls. The lucky descendants benefited from it, but currently it was a tourist centre. Entry for senior citizens (above 70 yr; partial for 65 yrs)), even foreigners, were free.

I think we need to study Confucian teaching with other teachings, both Chinese and Western. We have entered an age where you could not be exclusive and self centric.

 

 

 

 

DAY 3 SHANDONG TRAVEL: HOMAGE TO CONFUCIUS

DAY 3 SHANDONG TRAVEL: CONFUCIAN HOME, TEMPLE AND TOMB

 

 

talented teacher

homage to an empty tomb

a sage after death

 

When the Red guards extombed Confucius grave, they saw no corpse or skeletons buried inside. The sage has not risen to heaven; there was no need to invent a story. (The historical Kuan Kong grave was also without his corpse.)  The descendants were smart enough not to shift his remains to the new tomb. We must be aware that Confucius was well versed in Fong Shui (geomancy);  he edited Yi Jing, the first premier to all Chinese Classics.  Apparently in a Yin premise,  it was not necessary for the dead body to be buried there. It means cremation was quite acceptable. It is the regular homage by his descendants, disciples and other visitors, over many generations,  that begets the endless energy for his teaching to survive, against all odds. Similarly with Buddhism (not in India) and Daoism in China. Ancestor worship would enhance family harmony, and many would disagree, so let it be.

Confucius was a multi talented teacher, but lived a very poor and disappointed life. In modern day China, he was torn down as symbols of backward feudalism. People search for meaning of life, so they found meaning in a new religion. How could learning, love, sincerity, benevolence, respect be outmoded and backward? The Chinese soon learned that many things they acquired, including Marxism, were really not theirs at all. What was theirs they dared not study in the right perspective.

Even in the engraved stone, the word for holy, sheng, was written wrongly. Instead of a ren below the two radicals, it was a wang.  This is refereed to the traditional script.

The talented teacher was respected at a distance by emperors when alive, and made a sage, a demi god when dead. The idols was there to pray, not his teaching to learn, and instilled mindset changes; most importantly conduct and relate changes.

 

To continue another day …