Li Shangyin English Translations

Click on the title of each poem for the text in Chinese characters, pinyin and literal translation.

Sent North on a Rainy Night
Li Shangyin

You ask me what time I'll return, but I cannot give a time,
The rain in the hills of Ba at night overflows the autumn pools.
When can we trim the candle together by the western window,
And talk together of the rain in the hills of Ba at night?

The Pleasure Plain
Li Shangyin

Towards evening my thoughts became uncomfortable,
I drove my carriage upon the ancient plain.
The setting sun is good without limit,
But only comes when yellow dusk is near.

Untitled (Her Promises to Come Were Empty Words)
Li Shangyin

Her promises to come were empty words, she's gone without a trace,
The moon is slanting on the tower as I hear the fifth watch bell.
In my dream we were far apart, I found it hard to call,
Hurriedly I try to write, but find the ink too thin.
The candle's radiance covers half the gold and emerald bed,
A tiny hint of musky scent remains on embroidered lotus.
Young Liu already regretted that Pengshan hill lay far away,
We two are separated by ten thousand Pengshan hills.