Cold Meal Night

Cold Meal Night

Cui Daorong (~895)
In Manchu land the pears now blossom white
As moonlight broken by the blowing wind.
Here all the people fast for Cold Meal Night;
I gaze at home alone—cast off and thin.

Hán Shí Yè
Cuī Dàoróng
Mǎn dì lí huā bái
Fēng chuī suì yuè míng
Dà jiā hán shí yè
Dú zhù wàng xiāng qíng

Transliteration and Notes
Cold Meal Night
Manchu land pear blossoms white
Wind blows breaks moon light
Big home cold meal night
Alone save gaze countryside feeling

  • The poet served as a county magistrate during the late Tang Dynasty (618-907) and was close to other leading poets of the time, including Sikong Tu, Fang Gan, and Huang Tao.
  • “Cold Meal” refers to the three days of the Qingming Festival, where people abstain from cooked food.
  • “Manchu land” suggests that the poet is posted far away from home in the outposts of China.
  • “Big home” can mean “everyone.”
  • “Countryside feeling” can mean “homesickness.”


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