067 韓愈 – 八月十五夜贈張功曹
067 HAN Yu – Ode to Lunar August Fifteenth for Army Secretary Zhang
英文翻譯 / English Translation﹕
Ribbons of clouds gather and spread, not visible is the Milky Way in the sky,
A light breeze wafts through, in the water softly ripples moonshine.
Next to the quiet waters is the sand among the stillness of seclusion,
I raise my chalice to you urging you to give us a recital.
However your singing is aggrieved and your lyric bitter,
Before you could finish, before I could hear all, my tears fall like rain as I cry.
The waters of Dongting expand to the heaven joined by the soaring Doubtful Mountains,
Water dragons creep in the water, overland gibbons and foxes howl.
We've survived too many deadly setbacks to arrive at our posts on one last stretch of luck,
Quietly we take up residence here as if we are hiding out.
When we get out of bed and when we eat, there are snakes and poisons to fear,
The moist sea air dampens everything giving rise to mould that smells rotten and foul.
It seemed only yesterday when drum rolls came from the State Office,
Broadcasting a prince's enthronement who is willing to employ the virtuous highbrow.
Then came a decree of pardon apace as if hastened through thousands of miles a day,
Allowing even those sentenced to death to carry on living.
Those in exile and banished got to return to where they were,
The Court was to undergo a reform for a thorough cleansing.
The State Office have nominated us for review but suppressed by the Inspectors we are,
We've been unfortunate and could only follow our transfer to this uncultured land of Jing.
Low ranking secretarial officers we are, there's nothing to write home about,
Any error could see us grovel in the dust and fall victims to a beating.
Those who came with us have all but left to be on their way,
The road to the capital is a difficult climb becoming ever more perplexing.
Oh, have a rest, my friend, and give me a turn to sing you a bout,
I have something quite different to sing about.
In the space of a year, tonight's moon is the brightest and the roundest,
Life is determined by fate, not by any other route;
Why not drink when there is wine so we wouldn't the bright moon let down?