Li Shangyin’s Poetry – – 李商隐《柳》

曾逐东风[1]拂舞筵[2],

乐游春苑断肠天。

如何肯到清秋日[3],

已带斜阳又带蝉。

该诗写的是秋日之柳,诗人先追想春日的情景,然后再回到眼前的秋日之柳。全诗言少意丰,隐而不露,含蓄委婉,不着一个“柳”字,却句句有柳,抒发了作者对稀疏衰落的秋柳的悲叹之情。

注释:

[1]东风:指春风。

[2]舞筵:歌舞的筵席。

[3]清秋日:明净爽朗的秋天。晋殷仲文《南州桓公九井作》诗:“独有清秋日,能使高兴尽。”

To the Willow

Having caressed the dancers in the vernal breeze.

You’re ravished amid the merry-making trees.

How can you wait until clear autumn days are done

To shrill like poor cicadas in the setting sun?

Note:The willow is a symbol of the poet himself who would have changed the face of the world while young but could not realize his ideal while oldj ust as the willow swaying in spring but shrilling in autumn like a poor cicada on the branch of a willow tree.