Bai Juyi: Hear Evening Poundings

Hear Evening Poundings

闻 夜 砧
谁 家 思 妇 秋 捣 帛
月 苦 风 凄 砧 杵 悲。
八 月 九 月 正 长 夜
千 声 万 声 无 了 时。
应 到 天 明 头 尽 白
一 声 添 得 一 茎 丝。
Wen Ye Zhen

Shei jia si fu qiu dao bo
Yue ku feng qi zhen chu bei.                                                                                                    Ba yue jiu yue zheng chang ye
Qian sheng wan sheng wu liao shi.                                                                                  Ying dao tian ming tou jin bai
Yi sheng tian dei yi jing si.

 

Hear Evening Poundings

Think of all the households in autumn, the women pounding the clothes
Cold and bitter winds, melancholy moon with the pestles and blocks.  Longer evenings of the eight and ninth lunar months
Without end, one thousand, ten thousand seasonal sounds.

All night and day this pounding turns their hair white
One pounding sound yields one less remaining white hair.

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