Every year when summer is near the end, it’s time for Chinese people to start looking at the moon closely. The moon get more and more round as soon as it enters the lunar month of August. And August 15 is Mid-Autumn Festival, a festival for all Chinese people around the world to think of families, especially those who live far away.
The full moon, shared by all the people no matter where they are, becomes the medium for people to admire, to send love, to miss the loved ones in the hometown.
Admiring the full moon is one important activity for Mid-Autumn Festival celebration. Many Chinese poets have written a lot of poems regarding the moon.
Today let’s have a look at a famous 宋词(sòng cí ) , 水调歌头·明月几时有, written by a great poet, 苏轼(sū shì ) Su Shi, also commonly known as 苏东坡(sū dōng pō ) Su Dongpo (1037-1101). It is a poem about moon, about love, about life.
In 1983, 梁弘志 (liáng hóng zhì ) Liang Hongzhi composed this poem into an song entitled “Wishing We Last Forever” (但愿人长久 dàn yuàn rén cháng jiǔ ). Here I would like to present Faye Wong (王菲 wáng fēi )’s version.
The words are as follows, the translation is adapted from Wikipedia.
我欲乘风归去 唯恐琼楼玉宇 高处不胜寒
转朱阁 低绮户 照无眠
人有悲欢离合 月有阴晴圆缺 此事古难全
Bright moon, when did you appear?
Lifting my wine, I question the dark night sky.
Tonight in the palaces and halls of heaven
what year is it, I wonder?
I would like to ride the wind, make my home there,
Only I hide in a jade room of a beautiful mansion,
As I could not bear the cold of high altitudes.
So I rise and dance and play in your pure beams,
this human world — how can it compare with yours?
Circling red chambers,
low in the curtained door,
you shine on the sleepless.
Surely you bear us no ill will —
why then must you be so round at times when we humans are parted!
People have their griefs and joys, their togetherness and separation,
The moon has its dark and clear times, its waxings and wanings.
Situations are never ideal since long ago.
I only hope we two may have long long lives,
So that we may share the moon’s beauty even though we are a thousand miles apart.
How do you like this poem? Has it brought some thoughts? 但愿人长久 千里共婵娟, I only hope we two may have long long lives, so that we may share the moon’s beauty even though we are a thousand miles apart.