Tune: “Eight Beats of a Ganzhou Song”
Visiting the Star Cliff with My Friends
Mist spreads as far as sees the eye.
When did this big star fall from the blue sky?
It changed to a green cliff with cloud-like trees,
With golden bowers built for lady fair
In Wu’s great palace, now in sad debris.
On Arrow Lane the eyes were hurt in chilly air,
And rouged water stained with fallen flowers sweet.
Leaves fall on hollow ground,
‘tis Autumn’s sound,
It seems as if I heard the lady’s slippered feet.
In Wu’s great palace, drunk the king did lie,
But the tired hermit on the lake
Fished all alone awake.
In vain I ask the silent sky,
My hair turns gray in face of mountains green.
The sky in water mirrored seen,
Leaning on railings high,
I see crows scatter on the beach in setting sun.
I ask for wine both long and loud,
And stand upon Lute Terrace where is none
But autumn high and lonely as the cloud.