Du Fu: A Life in Poetry

Du Fu A Life in Poetry Du Fu is one of the undisputed geniuses of Chinese poetry still universally admired and read thirteen centuries after his death Now David Young author of Black Lab and well known as a transl

  • Title: Du Fu: A Life in Poetry
  • Author: Du Fu DavidYoung
  • ISBN: 9780307804426
  • Page: 345
  • Format: ebook
  • Du Fu: A Life in Poetry

    Du Fu 712 770 is one of the undisputed geniuses of Chinese poetry still universally admired and read thirteen centuries after his death Now David Young, author of Black Lab, and well known as a translator of Chinese poets, gives us a sparkling new translation of Du Fu s verse, arranged to give us a tour of the life, each chapter of poems preceded by an introductory paDu Fu 712 770 is one of the undisputed geniuses of Chinese poetry still universally admired and read thirteen centuries after his death Now David Young, author of Black Lab, and well known as a translator of Chinese poets, gives us a sparkling new translation of Du Fu s verse, arranged to give us a tour of the life, each chapter of poems preceded by an introductory paragraph that situates us in place, time, and circumstance What emerges is a portrait of a modest yet great artist, an ordinary man moving and adjusting as he must in troubled times, while creating a startling, timeless body of work.Du Fu wrote poems that engaged his contemporaries and widened the path of the lyric poet As his society one of the world s great civilizations slipped from a golden age into chaos, he wrote of the uncertain course of empire, the misfortunes and pleasures of his own family, the hard lives of ordinary people, the changing seasons, and the lives of creatures who shared his environment As the poet chases chickens around the yard, observes tear streaks on his wife s cheek, or receives a gift of some shallots from a neighbor, Young s rendering brings Du Fu s voice naturally and elegantly to life.I sing what comes to mein ways both old and modernmy only audience right now nearby bushes and treeselegant houses standin an elegant row, too manyif my heart turns to ashesthen that s all right with me om Meandering River From the Trade Paperback edition.

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    One thought on “Du Fu: A Life in Poetry

    1. Barnaby Thieme

      This is one of my favorite volumes of Chinese poetry. I hold David Young in very high regard for his powers of rendering the observations and verse of figures from such great remove in such vital, lyrical, and lively English. I'm in no position to evaluate the accuracy of his renderings, but they feel to me like the immediate, vivid expressions of a soul living in troubled times, taking beauty where he could find it, and living life as fully as conditions allowed. Its a balm and an inspiration f [...]

    2. Leo

      As a forewarning, I am not a scholar of Chinese literature. I have never studied it and I consider myself very ill-read (in all senses of the word) in all forms of Chinese literature. These are just my thoughts as a casual enthusiast of fiction and poetry in general, so they may be highly misinformed and lacking in insight.With that said, this is my favorite translation of Du Fu's poems by far. In the past, with previous translations, I found that the tone of his words did not match the subject [...]

    3. Hillary

      I learned about Du Fu from the "poem a day" email that I got during National Poetry Month. I really enjoyed this book - it's an excellent modern translation of poetry that still has a lot of relevance/resonance 1200+ years later, and the translator also does a great job of putting each poem in biographical context.

    4. pearl

      To Li BaiAutumn again and you and Iare thistledown in the windwe haven't foundwhat Ge Hong found--the fabulous elixirthat makes a man immortalI drink, I sing,my days are passed in vainpoets are proud and disgracefuland nobody knows quite why.

    5. J.M. Hushour

      I'm never a fan of older poetry. I appreciate it the same way I appreciate that someone's lewd act in the back of a wagon on a muddy pagan night brought us later generations of fill-in-the-blank. I take no joy in it itself. A substantive precursor, nothing more. I find the ancient Greek and Roman poets and, well, basically, everything up until the 19th century to be bland and fiercely unimaginative. How pleasantly surprising is this volume of Du Fu, 8th century poetic bad-ass! I love these poems [...]

    6. Maryann Corbett

      A wonderful introduction to the work of Du Fu. The introduction, acknowledgments, and notes are every bit as engrossing as the poems and they make me hungry to learn more.

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