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


The Chüan O; narrative, with allusive portions. Addressed by the duke of Chao to King Ch‘êng, desiring for him long prosperity and congratulating him, in order to admonish him, on the happiness of his people, and the number of his admirable officers.

1The south wind swept across the hill;
Its whistling sound each nook did fill..
  Our happy, courteous king
Was there, and, as he roamed about,
In tuneful notes his joy gave out.
  Then I began to sing. p. 377

2"You roam, with jocund spirits blest,
And now, serene, at ease you rest,
  O happy, courteous king!
May you your destined years fulfill,
And, like your noble fathers still,
  Life to good issue bring!

3"How vast and glorious is your realm,
Where peace sits steadfast at the helm,
  O happy, courteous lord!
May you your destined years complete,
While ever as their host you treat
  All spirits at your board!

4"Heaven to your sires assigned the crown,
To you ’mid greatest peace come down,
  O happy, courteous king!
Through all your term of years, may joy
And happiness without alloy,
  Their charm around you fling! p. 378

5"Men filial proved, and virtuous, stand
Near to your throne on either hand,
  Wise guidance to afford.
Like wings they bear you up on high,
Where you their pattern all descry,
  O happy, courteous lord!

6"Like mace of jade, pure, clear, and strong,
What majesty and grace belong
  To those, your helpers true!
The hope of all, their praise all sing.
Through them, O courteous, happy king,
  The nation's guide are you.

7"See how the phœnixes appear,
And their wings rustle on the ear,
  As now they settle down!
Such are those noble men who wait,
O happy king, upon your state,
  The servants of your crown! p. 379

8"The male and female phœnix, lo!
With rustling wings about they go,
  Then up to heaven they soar.
Such are those noble men who stand,
Prompt to obey your least command;—
  None love your people more.

9"Hark how the phœnixes emit
Their notes, as on that ridge they sit!
  There the dryandras grow,
And on its eastern slope they rise
With richer growth; and thence the cries
  Sweet and still sweeter flow!

10"Numerous your chariots! Fleet your steeds,
And trained! Your name for noble deeds
  Shall be renowned for long.
O king, these verses I have made,
And humbly at your feet they're laid,
  Inspired by your own song."

Next: IX. Min Lao