It is true to say that poetry has been a favorite literary genre in many places for a long time, and China is no exception. China has countless poems that are famous all over the world, and many of them are about love.
Today, we would like to provide you with the top 10 Chinese love poems from the long literary history of this country. They are all literary masterpieces that are still valid to this day.
Here are the ten best love-themed poems, in our opinion.
1. Song of River City: 江城子 • 记 梦
Translate the title into English: Song of River City
Author: Su Shi
Su Shi wrote this poem around 1075 after he dreamed of his wife. Su Shi married Wang Fu, his wife, in 1054 when she was fifteen. Sadly, she passed away eleven years after that, i.e., 1065.
The poet brought his wife’s body back to Sichuan the following year. This poet loves his wife very much, and this poem was born to describe his emotions for his wife.
2. Beating the Drum: 诗经.邶风.击鼓
Translate the title into English: Beating the Drum
This wonderful poem can clearly describe the homesickness of soldiers and officers on the battlefield.
3. Song of Divination:卜算子
Translate the title into English: Song of Divination.
Author: Li Zhiyi.
Li Zhiyi is considered one of Su Shi’s best disciples. This poet is also a member of the literary group “Yuanyou Poetic Style.” This poem is composed with the theme of expressing love between a man and a woman.
4. On And On, Going On And On:《行行重行行》
Translate the title into English: On And On, Going On And On
Through this song, we can feel the injustice, calamity, and loss of the war in the turbulent time of the late Eastern Han Dynasty. We can clearly understand a woman’s feelings for her husband, who is in a foreign land.
Translate the title into English: God!
This superb poem is said to have come from the folk poetry of Yuefu of the Han Dynasty. It is a warm and touching confession of a woman to the person she loves.
6. Immortals at the Magpie Bridge: 鹊桥仙
Translate the title into English: Immortals at the Magpie Bridge.
Author: Qin Guan.
The title of this poem is said to originate from the myth of the sincere love between the Weaver (Zhinu) and the Cowboy (Niulang).
Unfortunately, the Queen of Heaven separated these two and only allowed them to meet once per year at the bridge. This delightful classic love story inspired this poem to define human sorrows and joys.
7. I Was Not When You Were Born: 君生我未生，我生君已老
Translate the title into English: I Wasn’t When You Were Born
This delightful poem has simple language, which expresses the author’s grief and nostalgia for an elderly lover.
8. Tune of Wild Geese Tomb: 雁邱词
Translate the title into English: Tune of Wild Geese Tomb.
Author: Yuan Haowen.
In Taihe, the author of this poem went to Bingzhou to take a court exam. A bird hunter told the poet that he had caught a goose and killed it.
Then, its partner repeatedly levitates, cries a loft, and eventually commits suicide by plummeting to the ground. The poet then drew inspiration from that story to compose this poem.
9. Butterflies in Love with Flowers: 蝶恋花
Translate the title into English: Butterflies in Love with Flowers
Author: Liu Yong.
This poem is a skillful combination of longing for a lover and lonely feelings in a foreign land, expressing the hero’s will and steadfast bravery. It also successfully portrays the image of a woman who misses her lover.
10. Though On The Deceased Life: 离思
Translate the title into English: Though On The Deceased Life.
Li Bai is considered a famous Romantic Poet in ancient China. This poet lived during the Tang Dynasty. Besides writing romantic poems about women, he romanticized nature.
More than fifty thousand poems were composed by two thousand two hundred poets during the heyday of poetry.
Poetry had an essential role in the Chinese world of morality and governing. There is no denying that it was the most revered form of writing.
Shih” and “Shi” are romanizations of the character 詩/诗. It is the Chinese word for all poetry.
The greatest poets are believed to have lived a thousand years ago or more during the Song (960-1279), Tang (618-907), and Han (206 BC – 220 AD) dynastic eras. Li Bai, Su Shi, and Du Fu are considered among the best ancient poets.
Chinese poetry is profoundly marked by the three main currents of Oriental thought: Taoist mysticism, Buddhist nihilism, and Confucian morality.
Su Shi was born on January 8, 1037, and died on August 24, 1101. He was a famous Chinese writer and poet of the Song Dynasty. He was named one of the eight great prose masters of the Tang and Song.
Liu Yong was a Chinese poet of the Northern Song Dynasty. He has many famous poems and also served as an officer in multiple positions.
A high point of classical Chinese poetry occurred during the Tang period (618–907). Perhaps around 50,000 poems survive.
We’ve brought you 10 famous Chinese love poems. Which song do you like the most? Do you know any other poems about love? Please share with us through the comments section. Thanks for reading!