The Charm of a Maiden Singer
· Pass the Lake Donging
Lake Dongting, Lake Green Grass,
Near the Mid-autumn night,
Unruffled for no winds pass,
Like thirty thousand acres of jade bright
Dotted with the leaflike boat of mine.
The skies with pure moonbeams o’erflow;
The water surface paved with moonshine:
Brightness above, brightness below.
My heart with the moon becomes one,
Felicity to share with none.
Thinking of the southwest, where I passed a year,
To lonely pure moonlight skin,
I feel my heart and soul snow-and-ice-clear.
Although my hair is short and sparse, my gown too thin,
In the immense expanse I keep floating up.
Drinking wine from the River West
And using Dipper as wine cup,
I invite Nature to be my guest.
Beating time aboard and crooning alone.
I sink deep into time and place unknown.
The poet thinks his heart becomes one with the moon on the lake, bright within and without.
“The Charm of a Maiden Singer · Pass the Lake Donging” is a poetic composition written by Zhang Xiaoxiang, a literary scholar of the Southern Song Dynasty, who expresses his loyalty and courageous spirit through the scene of the Dongting moon at night, and at the same time reveals the author’s sadness of being relegated.