365 Days for Travelers: Jan 9


Wisdom from Chinese Literary and Buddhist Classics

THE SONG OF GOOD ENDING

The entire world knows the good about a heavenly
life, yet they are unable to put merit and fame
behind them. Where are those generals and
ministers from the past now? All buried under
wasted tombs outgrown by weeds today.

The whole world knows the good about a heavenly
life, yet they are unable to put gold and silver behind
them. All along they focus their resentment on
insufficient accumulation of wealth; finally, when
there is abundance, their eyes would already be shut.

The whole world knows the good about a heavenly
life, yet they are unable to put their pretty wives
behind. While you are alive, they would speak of
love and gratitude everyday, but the moment you
die, they would leave just to be with someone else.

The whole world knows the good about a heavenly
life, yet they are unable to put their sons and
grandsons behind. Loyal parents come in many
since long, yet how many have seen filial sons and
grandsons?

WEEPING OVER FALLEN BLOSSOMS (EXCERPT)

As blossoms fade and fly across the sky,
Who pities the faded red, the scent that has been?
Softly the gossamer floats over spring pavilions,
Gently the willow fluff wafts the embroidered screen.

Each year for three hundred and sixty days
The cutting wind and biting frost contend.
How long can beauty flower fresh and fair?
In a single day wind can whirl it to its end.

Now you are dead I come to bury you;
None has divined the day when I shall die;
Men laugh at my folly in burying fallen flowers,
But who will bury me when dead I lie?

See, when spring draws to a close and flowers fall,
This is the season when beauty must ebb and fade;
The day that spring takes wing and beauty fades
Who will care for the fallen blossom or dead maid?