Wang Wei: Ordered Into Exile

Ordered Into Exile To Jizhou

被 出 济 州
微 官 易 得 罪
谪 去 济 州 阴。
执 政 方 持 法
明 君 无 此 心。
闾 阎 河 润 上
井 邑 海 云 深。
纵 有 归 来 日
多 愁 年 鬓 侵。
Bei Chu Ji Zhou

Wei guan yi de zui
Zhe qu ji zhou yin.
Zhi zheng fang chi fa
Ming jun wu chi fa.

Lu yan he run shang
Jing yi hai yun shen.
Zong you gui lai ri
Duo chou nian bin qin.

 

Ordered Into Exile To Jizhou

One’s position easily changed with a petty, insignificant offense
Once a high official, now sent to a minor post in a remote border town: depart for Jizhou in the shadows at the river’s end.
To adhere to honest political activities, one must maintain legal standards
It’s obvious you are not of this mindset.

When the Yan River floods, all of the small tributaries fill with silt
These country people under an ocean of very deep clouds.
When set free, I will return together with the sun
After many years of worry and sorrow in this place, white hair on my temples, never to go back again.

 

Notes:

Jizhou:  One of the Nine Provinces of ancient China. Referred to the lands north of the Yellow River.

Yan River: Small tributary to the Yellow River.

Commentary:

A somewhat short, yet concise, description of what happened when officials like Wang Wei were sent into exile.  How quickly the ebb and flow of political power flows change.  Most of the poets on this website either stayed away from the power centers in the capital city, and/or were reassigned and exiled throughout their official careers.

 

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