Drinking Alone beneath the Moon, Canto I
Among the blossoms, a single jar of wine.
No one else here, I ladle it out myself.
Raising my cup, I toast the bright moon,
and facing my shadow makes friends three,
though moon has never understood wine
and shadow only trails along behind me.
Kindred a moment with moon and shadow,
I’ve found a joy that must infuse spring:
I sing, and moon rocks back and forth;
I dance, and shadow tumbles into pieces.
Sober, we’re together and happy. Drunk,
we scatter away into our own directions.
intimates forever, we’ll wander carefree
and meet again in Star River distances.
Translated by David Hinton
Written by Li Po
Po, Li, Drinking Alone beneath the Moon, in The Bedford Anthology of World Literature: The Middle Period, 100 C.E. – 1450. Davis,Paul, et. al., Bedford/St. Martins: Boston, New York, 2004.