Li Yi Poem: Meeting and Parting with My Cousin – 李益《喜见外弟又言别》












[1] 外弟:指表弟。古代称呼姑姑、舅舅、姨的比自己小的儿子为外弟。

[2] 十年:指唐代天宝十四年(755)至宝应二年(763)之间的安史之乱。“十年”是举其成数而言之。

[3] 离乱:指诗人与表弟因安史之乱而造成的分离。

[4] 长大:指成人。

[5] 旧容:过去的容貌。

[6] 沧海事:指变化剧烈、巨大的世事。

[7] 暮天钟:指傍晚时候的钟声。

[8] 巴陵:地名。巴陵县(今湖南岳阳)。

Meeting and Parting with My Cousin

Li Yi

We parted young for ten long years;

Not till grown up do we meet again.

At first I think a stranger appears;

Your name reminds me of your face then.

We talk of changes night and day

Until we hear the evening bell.

Tomorrow you’ll go southward way

Over autumn hills, O farewell!

The poet parted with his young cousin in time of war and met with him ten years later when they were grown up.


The poem “I am happy to see my cousin and say goodbye” is a poem written by Li Yi, a poet of the Tang Dynasty. The poem depicts the poet’s sad scene of meeting his cousin in the midst of the chaos and the hasty farewell, expressing the sincere friendship between relatives and the feeling that life is indefinite, reflecting from the side the suffering caused by social unrest. The whole poem uses condensed language, white descriptions, vivid details and typical scenes to reproduce the unique scene of life’s separation in social turmoil in a clear and layered way, with a strong sense of real life.

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