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新城道中On the Road to Newtown


原作: 苏轼(字子瞻, 号东坡居士; 11世纪北宋)

旧版英译:戈登.奥赛茵, 闵晓红, 黄海鹏(1990)

新版英译及赏析: 闵晓红(2023)





On the Road to Newtown

written by Su Shi (11th AC, social name 'Dongpo')

old En. trans. by G. Osing, J. Min & H. Huang (1990)

new En. trans.+ annot. by Julia Min ( Feb. 2023)

The east wind sees me going to the mountains,

So leaves off rain, the dripping music on eaves.

The ranges wear caps of clouds like white cotton.

The treetop hangs a brass gong, the sun at dawn.

The peach buds smile by a low fence of bamboo,

The weeping willows sway over the sand brook.

Westhill smells boiling okra with bamboo shoots,

A hearty start on the spring field for full yields.


1. Newtown: a county of Hangzhou Prefecture (Xindong County Zhejiang Province today);


Su Shi had been always fond of visiting the country to get hands touch on the grass roots, the real life of the common people instead of sitting in his office for reports. Besides, he has been greatly influenced by Daoist works by Zhuangzi and others. The Zen philosophy, a branch grown out of … , was developed and widely embraced in the Song Dynasty and onward, even today. This poem is just one of the many poems he wrote about his trips to the country, to the villages in the mountains, all detailed with the natural features there and then which we can still visit and capture, if lucky, today. Such transformation from the high and graceful society life to the common folks’ rural life is greatly valued in the literature of the Renaissance of Europe that happened about 3 hundred years later. Here the shift took place between the luxurious Tang Dynastry to the simple even plain but familiar life picture of the people.


1. Blooming Alone in Winter by Gordon Osing, Julia Min and Huang Haipeng,published by the People's Publication House Henan Province in 1990 (《寒心未肯随春态》戈登.奥赛茵,闵晓红,黄海鹏) (On the Road to Newtown: The east wind sees I go into the mountains today/And leaves-off raining, but for the music falling front eaves./The hills wear the last of the clouds, white caps of cotton,/And a fresh sun hangs in the treetops, a bright, brass gong.// Each peach-bud’s a smile by low bamboo fences/Where a stream and her willow are waving, the sands running clear/How lucky the man with so cozy a place, with its yields,/The woman who boils-up the shoots for her man in the field. ”)

2. pictures from “蒋溥写意画”


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