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SELECTIONS BY XIN QIJI
by Xin Qiji (1140 - 1207, Song Dynasty)
English translation: Zhi Yue and Linda Tsui

WRITTEN FOR MINISTER YE AT SHANGXIN PAVILION
Tune: Bodhisattva

The green mountains desire to converse with the noble man;
In quick succession, they come like ten thousand
stampeding horses, countless in number.
Unfortunately, a misty rain causes them to stall and dither,
The expected arrival eventually never arrives.

When people speak of the hair on one’s head,
White is always caused by sorrow.
I clap my hands and laugh at the gull,
Covered from head to toe with sorrow.

LANTERN FESTIVAL EVE
Tune: Emerald Jade Incidence

The East wind blooms a thousand trees in the night,
causing flowers to fall, and stars were like raindrops.
Jewelled and ornate horse-carriages line entire streets,
The serenade of phoenix flutes play,
glitters of the jade jars spin,
fish and dragon lanterns sway all night.
Butterfly pins adorned with
snowy willow twigs and golden tassels,
As they giggled away,
so does their perfumed scent fade.
Searching through the crowd
a hundred times, a thousand times;
Suddenly, when I turned around,
she stood right there,
beneath the waning light.

── from Bainian Foyuan (Buddhist Affinities Across 100 Years)