Butterflies in Love with Flowers
Red flowers fade, green apricots appear still small,
When swallows pass
Over blue water that surrounds the garden wall.
Most willow catkins have been blown away, alas!
But there is no place where grows no sweet grass.
Without the wall there is a path, within a swing.
Hears a fair maiden’s laughter in the garden ring.
The ringing laughter fades to silence by and by;
For the enchantress the enchanted can only sigh.
This lyric compares the grief of departing spring with that of a beauty unseen.
“Butterflies in Love with Flowers” is a lyric composed by Su Shi, a writer of the Northern Song Dynasty. It is a fresh and beautiful piece describing the spring scene, expressing the lyricist’s sighs over the passing of spring light and his own worries about not knowing his emotions. In the first section, the lyricist writes about the sadness brought by the passing of spring light, without being bound to describe the scenery but integrating his own deep lament. The next section is about the sadness of meeting a beautiful woman but not being able to meet her, and the sadness of being amorous but being treated unfeelingly. The lyrics are gentle and moving, containing sorrow in the freshness and sadness in the beauty, with a hazy mood and endless rhymes.