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Chinese poem illustration: 江雪 River and Snow by Liu Zongyuan

江雪

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The River Snow(江雪), is actually a life and death question raised to himself by Liu Zongyuan, who was very smooth on his career life in the central government before his 30s, suddenly posted to a no man’s land , with no hope to go back Chang’an city , neither hometown , even the civilized world in his rest life.

The first pair of sentence is about mountain, a no man’s land, saturated with the feeling of mortality. The second pair of sentence is about river and fisherman. The only fishman against a land of mortality resembles the poet himself who was against all odds from the emperor, from his colleagues, from the society that all destroying him.

As a Mountain River and Farming Field poem(山水田园诗), with a very typical subject of fisherman, which always suggests a hermit (渔樵耕读), this poem reflected a land of death, a hermit with utmost struggling and protesting, make it unique and lasting.

This great masterpiece of Liu Zongyuan reflects some of his endured , some of the endeavor of this period, also the dedication of a brave heart.

江雪
柳宗元

千山鸟飞绝,
万径人踪灭。
孤舟蓑笠翁,
独钓寒江雪。

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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