Monday, August 22, 2016

Son Mountain 17: A Cold Mountain Transcreation

This place of my retreat,
so secret, it’s difficult to express—
without a wind, the wild vines stir,
without a mist, the bamboo is in the dark,
who do the mountain streams cry for,
why are clouds assembling together?
I sit in my hut at noon
suddenly realizing the sun is risen.

(from the translations of RP175, RH-176, BW-46)

Son Mountain 16: A Cold Mountain Transcreation

Layer on layer of mountains and rivers,
cerulean film enclosed in rose-colored clouds—
a brush of mist soaks my cotton bandana,
morning dew dampens this coat of straw,
on my feet are sojourning sandals,
in my hand is a bamboo cane.
Again gazing beyond the dust of the world
not bothered by the dreams of that land.

(from the translations of RP106, RH-106, BW-44)

Son Mountain 15: A Cold Mountain Transcreation

Divining a far-flung place to dwell,
Peace of Heaven—there’s nothing more to say.
Gibbons cry from the cold mists of the valley,
glowing peaks merge into a grass gate,
leaves thatch the roof of a home in the pines,
a pond is channeled from a spring.
Content at last to drop the world,
picking ferns as the years fall away.

(from the translations of RP79, RH-78, BW-43)

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Son Mountain 14: A Cold Mountain Transcreation

My home is below lush green cliffs
with weeds in the yard uncropped—
vines hang in spiraling loops,
ancient rock rises high and steep,
monkeys gather the highland fruit,
egrets fill their bills with fish from the pond.
One or two scrolls of the immortals
go murmuring under the trees.

(from the translations of RP22, RH-16, BW-72)

Friday, August 19, 2016

On Cold Mountain, Translations, and 19

There appears to be more than one cold mountain—the real cold mountain is an absolute cold mountain—the rest are but limited buddhist frauds.

Intent at this point is transcreate all or most of what i see as absolute cold mountain—maybe less than 10% of the collection—but who knows?

By reading three translations of a single poem, one sees the poem that hasn't been translated. I call this triangulating the translations.

Just got a book called 19 ways of looking at wang wei with 19 translations of a single poem. In cribbage it's impossible to get a hand of 19.

Father and uncle playing cribbage on a red picnic table at half moon lake—when one has zero for a hand, cards thrown in disgust crying "19!"

Cribbage hand can score up to 29—also no 25, 26, 27 but 28 & 29 are quite rare—20 thru 24 will be seen making the absence of 19 noteworthy.

So a 19-sided polygon is known as an enneadecagon or enneakaidecagon or anonadecagon. So i'm off anonadecagonning.

Son Mountain 13: A Cold Mountain Transcreation

I’ve yearned to go to that eastern cliff
for numerous years until just now—
yesterday I climbed by means of vines
but halfway there was checked by mist and wind,
and the path was too narrow wearing clothes,
and the moss was too slick wearing shoes.
I stopped beneath a red perennial cinnamon tree
to sleep with a cloud for a pillow.

(from the translations of RP-9, RH-295, BW-75)

Son Mountain 12: A Cold Mountain Transcreation

In the mountains it’s cold
always cold and not just this year—
peaks upon peaks choked in snow,
deep dark woods hawking up mists,
things only begin to grow after the start of summer
and leaves fall before autumn begins.
Anyone who wanders here gets lost
looking and looking not seeing the sky.

(from the translations of RP-6, RH-67, BW-47, GS-3)