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The River-Merchant's Wife: A Letter

Ezra Pound

After Li Po

While my hair was still cut straight 
     across my forehead
I played at the front gate, pulling
     flowers.
You came by on bamboo stilts, playing
     horse,
You walked about my seat, playing with
     blue plums.  
And we went on living in the village of 
     Chokan:
Two small people, without dislike or 
     suspicion.  

At fourteen I married My Lord you.
I never laughed, being bashful.
Lowering my head, I looked at the wall.
Called to, a thousand times, I never
     looked back.

At fifteen I stopped scowling, 
I desired my dust to be mingled with
     yours
Forever and forever and forever.
Why should I climb the lookout?

At sixteen you departed,
You went into far Ku-to-en, by the river
     of swirling eddies,
And you have been gone five months.
The monkeys make sorrowful noise 
     overhead.

You dragged your feet when you went 
     out,
By the gate now, the moss is grown, 
     the different mosses,
Too deep to clear them away!
The leaves fall early this autumn, in 
     wind.
The paired butterflies are already 
     yellow with August
Over the grass in the West garden;
They hurt me.  I grow older.
If you are coming down through the
     narrows of the river Kiang,
Please let me know beforehand,
And I will come out to meet you
          As far as Cho-fu-sa.



Translated by Ezra Pound


Anonymous submission.

Added: 19 Aug 2002 | Last Read: 23 Apr 2018 9:40 AM | Viewed: 13411 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/6649/ | Viewed on 23 April 2018.
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