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The Book of Poetry, tr. by James Legge, [1876], at

p. 273

Book VI. The Decade of Pei Shan


The Pei Shan; narrative. An officer complains of the arduous and continual duties unequally imposed upon him, and keeping him away from his parents, while others were left to enjoy their ease.

1I climb that hill upon the north,
  And gather medlars on its side.
Active and vigorous, I go forth,
  And morn and night I walk or ride.
I serve the king with eager will;
But great the grief my parents feel!

2Where’er their arch the heavens expand,
  The king can claim the land below.
Within the seabounds of the land,
  All at his summons come or go.
His ministers unfairly act;
They praise me, but with toils distract. p. 274

3Four ceaseless steeds my care engage;
  The king's affairs no rest allow.
They say I bear no trace of age,
  While few, they think, such vigor show.
While my backbone remains unbent,
In work my life must still be spent.

4Some rest in careless ease, supine;
  Some for the state themselves wear out.
On softest couches some recline;
  Others, unhalting, march about.

5Some never hear a clamorous sound;
  Others toil on ’midst rude alarms.
Some idle on their backs are found;
  And some bear loads with head and arms.

6Some feast, and fearless seek new joys;
  Some live in constant dread of blame.
Some the harsh critic's work employs;
  Others their numerous duties claim.

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