We generally read or memorize one poem each week and spend a few moments learning about the poet’s life. I try to place each poet in time and location, along with any interesting information that makes them memorable. I’m hoping to make poetry a semi-regular posting here.
Author: Luo Binwang c. 640 – 684 Chinese poet of the Tang dynasty.
Luo Binwang was said to be able to recite poetry at the age of six and this poem, Ode to the Goose, is said to have been written when he was just seven years old. Luo Binwang is named as one of the four Heroes of Early Tang under Emperor Goazong. The Tang Dynasty was a golden age for Chinese poetry which was considered the highest form of literature.
Ode to the Goose
Goose, goose, goose
You bend your neck toward the sky and sing
Your white feathers float on the emerald water
Your red feet push the clear waves
Goose goose goose
Bend neck toward sky sing
White feather float green water
Red food push clear wave
The first version above is the literary English translation of our poem and the version we learned. The second version (below the first) is what might be a more literal English translation of the poem from the ancient Chinese. Translating Character based languages is tricky so depending on the translator may be interpreted differently so I take this information with a grain of salt.