By James J. Y. Liu

ISBN-10: 0226486877

ISBN-13: 9780226486871

This concise advent to chinese language poetry serves as a primer for English-speakers wanting to extend their knowing and pleasure of chinese language tradition. James J. Y. Liu first examines the chinese as a medium of poetic expression and, opposite to the standard concentrate on the visible traits of chinese language script, emphasizes the auditory results of chinese language verse. He presents a succinct survey of chinese language poetry concept and concludes along with his personal view of poetry, established upon conventional chinese language concepts."[This] books can be learn by way of all these attracted to chinese language poetry."—Achilles Fang, Poetry"[This is] an important contribution to the certainty and appreciation of chinese language poetry, lucidly provided in a manner that might allure a large viewers, and delivering an unique synthesis of chinese language and Western perspectives that may stimulate and encourage scholars of poetry everywhere."—Hans H. Frankel, Harvard magazine of Asiatic Studies"This is a publication which might be instructed with out reservation to somebody who desires to discover the area of chinese language poetry in translation."—James R. Hightower, magazine of Asian experiences

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Example text

It is because poetry expresses what is felt sincerely in the heart that tears can fall in response to one's brush-strokes; and it is because it expresses what is felt in common with others in the heart that it can make one's readers shed tears in response to one's utterance. Now if one only writes the four middle lines (of an eight-line poem in Regulated Verse), is that what is felt sincerely in the heart, or felt in common with others in the heart? If the T'ang poets had also written only the four middle lines of their poems, how could we even now shed tears while reading them?

Let us take the poem simply as a lyric: the poet is troubled with a nameless, groundless, 'idle feeling'-a feeling of ennui, of langueur, of a 'deuil sans raison'. To drown it, he is drinking himself to death (or so he thinks). '). This sophisticated emotional attitude, so reminiscent of late nineteenth-century European decade1Jce, is re­ vealed in a language no less sophisticated. Notice, among other things, how the poet speaks of letting his image in the mirror grow thin, instead of himself. ) leisttred milieu.

Below, pp. 70 and 77. 66 The Didactic ["Im l : Poetry as l\1ora/ Iltstmetion Confucius and revive the tradition of The Book oj Poetry. Po Chii-I, in his turn, deplored the fact that among the poems of Li Po and Tu Fu, only a small proportion described the sufferings of the people and pointed morals. To give more examples of such avowels of pious sentiments might become tedious. So, instead, I will simply summarize the main points made by those who sub­ scribed to the didactic view. First of all, poetry is regarded as a means to influence personal morality.

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The Art of Chinese Poetry by James J. Y. Liu


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