In Imitation of A Hard Journey
Jade stairs lead from the gateway to the boudoir
With patterned window, carved door and brocade.
A maiden by the name of Jinlan stayed in it,
Wearing satin and playing with hyssop blade.
When swallows came in spring and plum blooms fell,
With the birds on window sills she played.
She suppressed her songs and shed tears of woe;
How much time of happiness belonged to the maid?
She’d rather be a duck staying with her mate
Than a lonely crane unlucky in her fate.