Song of a Southern Country
· Written on Mountain-climbing Day
Generals talk of nobility or long;
I lean on balustrade, listening to flute song.
Everything will be gone with wind and rain,
In vain, in vain!
The golden bridle of the steed can’t long remain.
Drink wine without delay!
It tastes as good now as last Mountain-Climbing Day.
Flowers would smile on an old man’s head,
Blush and go red.
To rid of grief white hair with flowers will be wed.
This is the poet’s last lyric, saying that wine and flowers become an old man.
“Song of a Southern Country · Written on Mountain-climbing Day” is a lyric composed by Huang Tingjian, a lyricist of the Northern Song Dynasty. The upper part of the poem expresses his deep feeling that everything is over through the experience of drinking wine at the high altitude on Chong Yang and his own difficult life, while the lower part expresses the writer’s ambitious feelings of using wine to relieve his sorrow, pinning flowers on his white hair, forcing himself to look happy and finding happiness in his suffering, reflecting his ambivalence in the face of the cold reality in his old age. This piece has simple words, deep emotions and a grim style, reflecting the characteristic of “vulgarity as elegance”.