Hu Shih's Poetry 


English Translation

Translated by Kai Yu Hsu
Hu Shih (1891-1962), it was he who opened the floodgates through which would pour the cascade of poetry in the vernacular that represents the mainstream of Chinese verse expression today.

It's all ordinary experience,
All ordinary images.
By chance they emerge in a dream,
Turning out infinite new patterns.

It's all ordinary feelings,
All ordinary words.
By chance they encounter a poet,
Turning out infinite new verses.

Once intoxicated, one learns the strength of wine,
Once smitten, one learns the power of love:
You cannot write my poems
Just as I cannot dream your dreams.

Dream and Poetry

From the gree foliage below the hill
Emerges a corner of flying roof.
It awakens an old dream, and causes
Tears to fall within me.

For it I sing a song of old,
In a tune no one understands,
Ah, I am not really singing,
Only reviewing an old dream.

Old Dream

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