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A lute song – Li Qi

Our host, providing abundant wine to make the night mellow,
Asks his guest from Yangzhou to play for us on the lute.
Toward the moon that whitens the city-wall, black crows are flying,
Frost is on ten thousand trees, and the wind blows through our clothes;
But a copper stove has added its light to that of flowery candles,
And the lute plays The Green Water, and then The Queen of Chu.
Once it has begun to play, there is no other sound:
A spell is on the banquet, while the stars grow thin….
But three hundred miles from here, in Huai, official duties await him,
And so it’s farewell, and the road again, under cloudy mountains.


主人有酒欢今夕, 请奏鸣琴广陵客。
月照城头乌半飞, 霜凄万树风入衣;
铜炉华烛烛增辉, 初弹渌水后楚妃。
一声已动物皆静, 四座无言星欲稀。
清淮奉使千余里, 敢告云山从此始。


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