Li Shangyin Poem: The Sad Zither – 李商隐《锦瑟》

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锦瑟

李商隐

锦瑟[1]无端[2]五十弦,

一弦一柱思华年[3]

庄生晓梦迷蝴蝶[4]

望帝春心托杜鹃[5]

沧海月明珠有泪[6]

蓝田日暖玉生烟[7]

此情可待[8]成追忆,

只是当时已惘然。

注释:

[1] 锦瑟:《周礼·乐器图》:“雅瑟二十三弦,颂瑟二十五弦,饰以宝玉者日宝瑟,绘文如锦者日锦瑟。”《汉书·郊祀志上》:“秦帝使素女鼓五十弦瑟,悲,帝禁不止,故破其瑟为二十五弦。”古瑟大小不等,弦数亦不同。一般说法,古瑟是五十条弦,后来的有二十五弦或十七弦等不同的瑟。

[2] 无端:没来由;无缘无故。此隐隐有悲伤之感,乃全诗之情感基调。

[3] “一弦”句:柱,是调整弦的音调高低的“支柱”,它把弦“架”住。“思”字应变读去声。律诗中不许有一连三个平声的出现。

[4] “庄生”句:《庄子·齐物论》:“庄用梦为蝴蝶,栩栩然蝴蝶也;自喻适志与!不知周也。俄然觉,则蘧蘧然周也。不知周之梦为蝴蝶与?蝴蝶之梦为周与?”商隐此引庄周梦蝶故事,以言人生如梦,往事如烟之意。

[5] “望帝”句:望帝,古代蜀国的君主,名杜宇,传说他让位死后,化为杜鹃鸟,悲啼不已。春心,伤春之心。

[6] “沧海”句:相传珍珠是由南海鲛人(神话中的人鱼)的眼泪变成,古人还认为海里的蚌珠随月亮盈亏而有圆缺变化,这里糅合了以上的典故。

[7] “蓝田”句:蓝田,即蓝田山,在今陕西蓝田县,为有名的产玉之地。日暖玉生烟,相传宝玉埋在地下,在阳光的照耀下,良玉上空会出现烟云。

[8] 可待:岂待;何待。

The Sad Zither

Li Shangyin

Why should the sad zither have fifty strings?

Each string, each strain evokes but vanished springs:

Dim morning dream to be a butterfly;

Amorous heart poured out in cuckoo’s cry.

In moonlit pearls see tears in mermaid’s eyes;

From sunburnt jade in Blue Field let smoke rise.

Such feeling cannot be recalled again;

It seemed lost even when it was felt then.

The zither evokes vanished springs dim and free as the dream of a butterfly, amorous as the heart of a cuckoo, tearful as moonlit pearls and vaporous as the smoke rising from sunburnt jade in the Blue Field.

 

《锦瑟》是唐代诗人李商隐的诗作。诗题“锦瑟”,不过是按古诗的惯例以篇首二字为题,实是借瑟以隐题的无题诗。此诗是李商隐最难索解的作品之一,诗家素有“一篇《锦瑟》解人难”的慨叹。作者在诗中追忆了自己的青春年华,伤感自己不幸的遭遇,寄托了悲慨、愤懑的心情,借用庄生梦蝶、杜鹃啼血、沧海珠泪、良玉生烟等典故,采用比兴手法,运用联想与想象,把听觉的感受,转化为视觉形象,以片段意象的组合,创造朦胧的境界,借助可视可感的诗歌形象来传达其真挚浓烈而又幽约深曲的情思。全诗词藻华美,含蓄深沉,情真意长,感人至深。

The poem “The Sad Zither” is a musical poem written by Li He in the Tang Dynasty. The first four lines of the poem describe the splendor and richness of the banquet; the fifth and sixth lines describe the dynamic singing and dancing; the seventh and eighth lines specify the time of the banquet; and finally, the poem ends with a rhetorical quote from the ancients. The poem begins with a description of wine, food, song and dance, which seems to be the most enjoyable part of life, but ends with a sudden turn, unexpectedly introducing the idea of death and the desolation of the grave. In the great contrast, the poet emphasizes the joy of life and the sorrow of death, and in the contrast between life and death, the poet intends to express the sorrow of life forged by a short and bitter life.

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