To My Retired Friend Wei (Chinese: 贈衛八處士) – Du Fu (712-770)

人生不相見, It is almost as hard for friends to meet
動如參與商。 As for the morning and evening stars.
今夕復何夕, Tonight then is a rare event,
共此燈燭光。 Joining, in the candlelight,
少壯能幾時, Two men who were young not long ago
鬢髮各已蒼。 But now are turning grey at the temples.
訪舊半為鬼, To find that half our friends are dead
驚呼熱中腸。 Shocks us, burns our hearts with grief.
焉知二十載, We little guessed it would be twenty years
重上君子堂。 Before I could visit you again.
昔別君未婚, When I went away, you were still unmarried;
兒女忽成行。 But now these boys and girls in a row
怡然敬父執, Are very kind to their father’s old friend.
問我來何方。 They ask me where I have been on my journey;
問答乃未已, And then, when we have talked awhile,
兒女羅酒漿。 They bring and show me wines and dishes,
夜雨翦春韭, Spring chives cut in the night-rain
新炊間黃粱。 And brown rice cooked freshly a special way.
主稱會面難, My host proclaims it a festival,
一舉累十觴。 He urges me to drink ten cups —
十觴亦不醉, But what ten cups could make me as drunk
感子故意長。 As I always am with your love in my heart?
明日隔山嶽, Tomorrow the mountains will separate us;
世事兩茫茫。 After tomorrow – who can say?

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