More Translations from the Chinese/The Fifteenth Volume

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[Having completed the fifteenth volume of his works, the poet sends it to his friends Yüan Chēn and Li Chien, with a jesting poem.]

[Written in 818]

My long poem, the "Eternal Grief,"[1] is a beautiful and moving work;
My ten "Songs of Shensi" are models of tunefulness.
I cannot prevent Old Yüan from stealing my best rhymes;
But I earnestly beg Little Li to respect my ballads and songs.
While I am alive riches and honour will never fall to my lot;
But well I know that after I am dead the fame of my books will live.
This random talk and foolish boasting forgive me, for to-day
I have added Volume Fifteen to the row that stands to my name.

  1. See Giles, "Chinese Literature," p. 169.