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Classical Chinese

'柳宗元 秋曉行南谷經荒村 translation: On an Autumn Morning, Travelling on a Southern Valley Path to a Deserted Village, by Liu Zongyuan'

This is a very rough translation and annotation of the poem 秋曉行南谷經荒村 (Qiūxiǎo Xíng Nán Gǔjīng Huāngcūn), ‘On an Autumn Morning, Travelling on a Southern Valley Path to a Deserted Village’, by the Tang Dynasty Chinese poet 柳宗元 (Liǔ Zōngyuán).

As always, if you have any suggestions, please share them in the comments at the end of the page.

China, Yunnan Province - Deqin Hike

秋曉行南谷經荒村

Qiūxiǎo Xíng Nán Gǔjīng Huāngcūn [autumn] [morning] [travel] [south] [valley] [path] [deserted] [village] On an Autumn Morning, Travelling on a Southern Valley Path to a Deserted Village

杪秋霜露重, Miǎo qiūshuāng lù zhòng, [branch tip] [autumn] [frost] [dew] [heavy] On branch tips, the autumn frost and dew is heavy; (Autumn frost is a standard metaphor for encroaching white hair.)

晨起行幽谷。 chen qǐ xíng yōugǔ. [morning] [rise] [travel] [deep] [valley] at dawn one rises and travels in a deep valley. (Another metaphor, surely!)

黃葉覆溪橋, Huáng yè fù xī qiáo, [yellow] [leaf] [cover] [creek] [bridge] Yellow leaves cover a bridge on a creek;

荒村唯古木。 huāngcūn wéi gǔmù. [deserted] [village] [only] [old] [tree] in a deserted village, there are only old trees.

寒花疏寂歷, Hán huā shū jì lì, [cold] [flower] [sparse] [alone] [all] Cold flowers are scattered, all lonely;

幽泉微斷續。 yōu quán wēi duàn xù. [secluded] [spring] [tiny] [break] [continue] a hidden spring's faint sound is cut off, then continues.

機心久已忘, Jī xīn jiǔyǐ wàng, [cunning] [heart] [long time] [already] [forget] One's cunning mind long since forgotten,

何事驚麋鹿? héshì jīng mílù? [what] [matter] [startle] [moose] [deer] how is it that one can startle an elk?

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