Words Challenge, Day 22

So today’s poem is a bit of a cop out on my part (it’s totally a cop-out, sorry). But I’ve been getting into Chinese and other languages poetry recently, and I’ve wanted to either translate an English poem into Chinese (that’s still in the works) or a Chinese poem into English for a while. I would write my own, but that sounds terribly difficult and I wouldn’t even know where to  begin. Baby steps, right? So here’s today’s poem,

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静夜思

床前明月光
疑是地上霜
举头望明月
低头思故乡

 

Jìngyè sī

chuáng qián míngyuèguāng
yí shì dìshàng shuāng
jǔ tóu wàng míng yuè
dītóu sī gùxiāng

A fairly literal translation:

Quiet Night Thinking

The bright moonlight before my bed

Suspect it’s frost on the ground

[commanding] Raise head looking at the bright moon

Lower head considering home.

And a more romantic translation:

Still Night Thinking

The bright moonlight is before my bed

I suspect frost is on the ground

I raise my head and look at the bright moon

Give in and think of home.

I’m not really so super smart at Chinese that I could translate this poem entirely myself, I got “to suspect” from a trusted dictionary website. I also double checked all my meanings there, and I really liked what it gave me for 举头。It said it could also mean to give in–and that seemed to fit really well with the nostalgic tone of the poem. I hope you liked this as much as I did, this poem gave me a lot to think about. ^^

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