Li Bai  
[Li Po, Li Tai-Po]


Thinking Under the Moonnight Li Bai's Poetry - China the Beautiful

Most Popular Poem by the Most Famous Chinese Poet



Li Bai
Night Thoughts

I wake and moonbeams play around my bed

Glittering like hoarfroast to my wondering eyes

Upwards the glorious moon I raise my head

Then lay me down and thoughts of home arise

Tr by: H.A. Giles
Thoughts in a Tranquil Night

Athwart the bed
I watch the moonbeams cast a trail
So Bright, so cold, so frail,
That for a space it gleams
Like hoar-frost on the margin of my dreams.
I raise my head, --
The splendid moon I see:
The droop my head,
And to dreams of thee --
My Fatherland, of thee!

Tr by: L. Cranmer-Byng
A Tranquil Night

Before my bed a frost of light

Is it hoarfrost upon the ground Eyes raised,

I see the moon so bright

Head bent, in homesickness I'm drowned

Tr by: Xu Yuanzhang
Ye Si

Chuang qian ming yue guang

Yi Shi di shang shuang

Ju tou wang ming yue

Di tou si gu xiang

Click for recitation

Pin Yin representation
Li Bai (701-762) was born in Suiye in Central Asia. His ancestors had been banished there by the Sui rulers. At five he moved to Sichuan with his father, who was probably a rich merchant. When young, he studied not only Confucian classics, but works of other schools.

After 20 he first travelled for and wide in Sichuan, and then he started a long journey to Central, East and North China. He did not sit for the civil service examination, for he looked down upon it. But he wished to become an official.

When he was 42, he was recommended to Tang Xuan Zong , who ordered him to go to Chang'an. He stayed there for three years and was bitterly disappointed. During the years of An Lushan's rebellion, he joined the staff of Prince Li Lin. Later, because Li Lin tried to seize power and failed, Li Bai was exiled to Yelang. On his way to Yelang he was freed by an amnesty. He went to East China and died at 62 in Dangtu, Anhui.

Brief Biography of Li Bai

Li Bai's Poems in English   in Chinese  
Great Poets  Poetry Page  Home Page  Sound problems