Page:A history of Chinese literature - Giles.djvu/165

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153
LI PO


My tresses for head-dress
 with gay garlands girt,
Carnations arranged
 o'er my jacket and skirt!
Then to wander away
 in the soft-scented air,
And return by the side
 of his Majesty's chair . . .
But the dance and the song
 will be o'er by and by,
And we shall dislimn
 like the rack in the sky."

As time went on, Li Po fell a victim to intrigue, and left the Court in disgrace. It was then that he wrote—

"My whitening hair would make a long, long rope,
 Yet would not fathom all my depth of woe."

After more wanderings and much adventure, he was drowned on a journey, from leaning one night too far over the edge of a boat in a drunken effort to embrace the reflection of the moon. Just previously he had indited the following lines:—

"An arbour of flowers
 and a kettle of wine:
Alas! in the bowers
 no companion is mine.
Then the moon sheds her rays
 on my goblet and me,
And my shadow betrays
 we're a party of three.

"Though the moon cannot swallow
 her share of the grog,
And my shadow must follow
 wherever I jog,—
Yet their friendship I'll borrow
 and gaily carouse,
And laugh away sorrow
 while spring-time allows.