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A collection of 88 brief poems by ancient masters of Chinese poetry in an anonymous English translation. With titles such as "Contentment", "Wild Geese", "Best Happiness of All", "The Ashes of My House", "Jade Flower Palace", "We Will Grow Old Together", "The Poet Dreams", and "At Midnight", the subjects range across love in all forms, the ravages of war, the glories of nature, the sorrow of homelessness, the death of a loved one, peaceful reveries of hermits, the meditations of the wise, delicate art forms, and the entertainments at court.
The poets represented are Li Po, Tu Fu, Po Chu-I, Wan Ts'u, Mei Chang, Chang Wu-chien, Chang Chieh, Pan Tie tsu, Hsin Ch'i-chi, Wang Chang-ling, Li Yi, Wang-Wei, Li Yi-hang, Chan Tiu-lin, Chu Yuan, Ting Tun-ling, Tchang Tsi, Li Chuang-chia, Su Tong po, Wife of Lieu Hsun, Weng T'ing-chun, Emperor Wu-Ti, Li-Fu-jen, Meng Hai jan, Li Hung-chang, Chang Hsien, Chen Tzu-ang, Pe Kin-yi, Tsiang Tien, Li-Shang-yin, Li Yung, Tao Yuan-Ming, Su Shih, Prince Li Chin, Yuan Chen, and anonymous others.
To listen to these poems is to be taken back in to a world both dreamily exotic and palpably contemporary.