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Chinese poem illustration: 关山月/ Fortress Mountain Moon by Li Bai

关山月

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The best one among Li Bai’s few Frontier and Fortress poetry(边塞诗). The moon comes up above the Sky Mountains(天山即今日之祁连山/Qilian mountains) is one of the many visions built into a Chinese mind by Li Bai through his unique wording, bold character and the exceptional long-sighted vision.

This poem started with the view of the vast, unique landscape featured with fortress, gobi desert, endless snow mountains in a full moon night, where is the battle fields through the history. The bold and positive feeling turned to be bitter homesick by the following history review and the current situation in fortress. One of the key words 色 or 邑 was discussed, where 邑 is normally considered as a better choice.

关山月
李白

明月出天山,苍茫云海间。
长风几万里,吹度玉门关。


汉下白登道,胡窥青海湾。
由来征战地,不见有人还。


戍客望边色,思归多苦颜。
高楼当此夜,叹息未应闲。

CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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