Slow Song of Divination
The riverside maples grown old,
Sweet orchids wither by and by.
The faded red and green spread out before the eye.
A Southerner, I climb up high;
It’s already late autumn cold.
The setting sun is drowned
In washerwomen’s intermittent pounding sound.
With evening scenery in view,
Though far away, can I not think of you?
How can old grief not be followed by sorrow new?
Silent, a thousand miles separate you and me.
In two places our dreams
Can’t fly o’er streams on streams.
When stops the rain, the sky’s serene;
My eyes can’t go beyond the twelve peaks green.
Wordless, who would understand my
Leaning on railings at the height?
Though I can write
Down parting grief with broken heart,
Would clouds return and bring it for my part?
The poet describes the autumn scenery to reveal his parting grief.
The song “Slow Song of Divination” is a lyric composed by Liu Yong of the Northern Song Dynasty. The first fragment is about the scene of autumn in which the sun is setting and the cold anvils are intermittent. The next piece focuses on the cause of “new sorrow and old hatred” and expresses the emotion of parting. The whole lyric has emotions in the scene and scenes in the emotions. With sincere and strong emotions and fluent diction, the lyric portrays the love story of a traveler in a foreign land who misses his wife at the height of a high mountain in the twilight of autumn, expressing the deep nostalgia of the traveler in a foreign land for his wife and the miserable feelings of not seeing her or sending her letters. It is a poignant poem with a lot of emotions, and the expression of the feelings of the poet is deepened step by step.