姿
The Son of Heaven in Yuanhe times was martial as a god
yuán hé tiān zi shén wǔ zī ,
And might be likened only to the Emperors Xuan and Xi.
bǐ hé rén zāi xuān yǔ xī ,
He took an oath to reassert the glory of the empire,
shì jiāng shàng xuě liè shèng chǐ ,
And tribute was brought to his palace from all four quarters.
zuò fǎ gōng zhōng cháo sì yí 。
西
Western Huai for fifty years had been a bandit country,
huái xī yǒu zéi wǔ shí zài ,
Wolves becoming lynxes, lynxes becoming bears.
fēng láng shēng chū chū shēng pí ;
They assailed the mountains and rivers, rising from the plains,
bù jù shān hé jù píng de ,
With their long spears and sharp lances aimed at the Sun.
zhǎng gē lì máo rì kě huī 。
But the Emperor had a wise premier, by the name of Du,
dì dé shèng xiāng xiāng yuē dù ,
Who, guarded by spirits against assassination,
zéi zhuó bù sǐ shén fú chí 。
Hong at his girdle the seal of state, and accepted chief command,
yāo xuán xiāng yìn zuò dōu tǒng ,
While these savage winds were harrying the flags of the Ruler of Heaven.
yīn fēng cǎn dàn tiān wáng qí 。
Generals Suo, Wu, Gu, and Tong became his paws and claws;
sù wǔ gǔ tōng zuò yá zhǎo ,
Civil and military experts brought their writingbrushes,
yí cáo wài láng zài bǐ suí 。
And his recording adviser was wise and resolute.
xíng jūn sī mǎ zhì qiě yǒng ,
A hundred and forty thousand soldiers, fighting like lions and tigers,
shí sì wàn zhòng yóu hǔ pí 。
Captured the bandit chieftains for the Imperial Temple.
rù cài fù zéi xiàn tài miào 。
So complete a victory was a supreme event;
gōng wú yǔ ràng ēn bù zī 。
And the Emperor said: "To you, Du, should go the highest honour,
dì yuē rǔ dù gōng dì yī ,
And your secretary, Yu, should write a record of it."
rǔ cóng shì yù yí wèi cí 。
When Yu had bowed his head, he leapt and danced, saying:
yù bài jī shǒu dǎo qiě wǔ ,
"Historical writings on stone and metal are my especial art;
jīn shí kè huà chén néng wèi 。
And, since I know the finest brush-work of the old masters,
gǔ zhě shì chēng dà shǒu bǐ ,
My duty in this instance is more than merely official,
cǐ shì bù xì yú zhí sī 。
And I should be at fault if I modestly declined."
dāng rén zì gǔ yǒu bù ràng ,
The Emperor, on hearing this, nodded many times.
yán qì lǚ hàn tiān zi yí 。
退
And Yu retired and fasted and, in a narrow workroom,
gōng tuì zhāi jiè zuò xiǎo gé ,
His great brush thick with ink as with drops of rain,
rú rǎn dà bǐ hé lín lí 。
Chose characters like those in the Canons of Yao and Xun,
diǎn cuàn yáo diǎn shùn diǎn zì ,
And a style as in the ancient poems Qingmiao and Shengmin.
tú gǎi qīng miào shēng mín shī 。
And soon the description was ready, on a sheet of paper.
wén chéng pò tǐ shū zài zhǐ ,
In the morning he laid it, with a bow, on the purple stairs.
qīng chén zài bài pù dān chí 。
He memorialized the throne: "I, unworthy,
biǎo yuē chén yù mèi sǐ shàng ,
Have dared to record this exploit, for a monument."
yǒng shén shèng gōng shū zhī bēi 。
The tablet was thirty feet high, the characters large as dippers;
bēi gāo sān zhàng zì rú dòu ,
It was set on a sacred tortoise, its columns flanked with ragons....
fù yǐ líng áo pán yǐ chī 。
The phrases were strange with deep words that few could understand;
jù qí yǔ zhòng yù zhě shǎo ,
And jealousy entered and malice and reached the Emperor –
chán zhī tiān zi yán qí sī 。
So that a rope a hundred feet long pulled the tablet down
zhǎng shéng bǎi chǐ zhuāi bēi dào 。
And coarse sand and small stones ground away its face.
cū shā dà shí xiāng mó zhì 。
But literature endures, like the universal spirit,
gōng zhī sī wén ruò yuán qì ,
And its breath becomes a part of the vitals of all men.
xiān shí yǐ rù rén gān pí 。
The Tang plate, the Confucian tripod, are eternal things,
tāng pán kǒng dǐng yǒu shù zuò ,
Not because of their forms, but because of their inscriptions....
jīn wú qí qì cún qí cí 。
Sagacious is our sovereign and wise his minister,
wū hū shèng huáng jí shèng xiāng ,
And high their successes and prosperous their reign;
xiāng yǔ xuǎn hè liú chún xī 。
But unless it be recorded by a writing such as this,
gōng zhī sī wén bù shì hòu ,
How may they hope to rival the three and five good rulers?
hé yǔ sān wǔ xiāng pān zhuī ?
I wish I could write ten thousand copies to read ten thousand times,
yuàn shū wàn běn sòng wàn guò ,
Till spittle ran from my lips and calluses hardened my fingers,
kǒu jiǎo liú mò yòu shǒu zhī ;
And still could hand them down, through seventy-two generations,
chuán zhī qī shí yǒu èr dài ,
As corner-stones for Rooms of Great Deeds on the Sacred Mountains.
yǐ wèi fēng chán yù jiǎn míng táng jī 。

There are no comments yet for this text.

You need to log in to leave a comment.