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Tao Yuanming: Biography of the Five Willows Gentleman

Biography of the Five Willows Gentleman

五 柳 先 生 传
先 生 不 知 何 许 人 也
亦 不 详 其 姓 字
宅 边 有 五 柳 树
因 以 为 号 焉。
闲 静 少 言
不 慕 蓉 利。
好 读 书 不 求 甚 解
每 有 会 意
便 欣 然 忘 食。
性 嗜 酒
家 贫 不 能 常 得。
亲 旧 知 其 如 此
或 置 酒 而 招 之。
造 饮 辄 尽
期 在 必 醉:
既 醉 而 退
曾 不 吝 情 去 留。
环 堵 萧 然
不 蔽 风 日:
短 褐 穿 结
箪 瓢 屡 空
常 著 文 章 自 误
颇 示 己 志。
忘 怀 得 失
以 此 自 终。
赞 曰: 黔 娄 之 妻 有 言:
“不 戚 戚 于 贫 贱
不 汲 汲 于 富 贵。
兹 若 人 之 俦 乎?
酣 觞 赋 诗
一 乐 其 志
无 怀 氏 之 民 欤?
葛 天 氏 之 民 欤?
Wu Liu Xian Sheng Zhuan

Xian sheng bu zhi he xu ren ye
Yi bu xiang qi xing zi,
Zhai bian you wu liu shu
Yin yi wei hao yan.

Xian jing shao yan
Bu mu rong li.
Hao du shu bu qiu shen jie
Mei you hui yi
Bian xin ran wang shi.

Xing shi jiu
Jia pin bu neng chang de.
Qin jiu zhi qi ru ci
Huo zhi jiu er zhao zhi.

Zao yin zhe jin
qi zai bi zui:
Ji zui er tui
Zeng bu lin qing qu liu.

Huan du xiao ran
bu bi feng ri:
Duan he chuan jie
dan piao lu kong
yan ru ye.

Chang zhu wen zhang zi wu
Po shi ji zhi.
Wang huai de shi
Yi ci zi zhong.

Zan yue: qian lou zhi qi you yan:
“Bu qi qi yu pin jian
Bu ji ji yu fu gui.”
Ji qi yan

Zi ruo ren zhi chou hu ?
Han shang fu shi
Yi le qi zhi
Wu huai min shi min yu?
Ge tian shi zhi min yu !


Biography of the Five Willows Gentleman

This gentleman does not know where his people have come from
Also doesn’t know his family’s name.
At the side of his house grows five willow trees
This is how he got this name.

He abides with quiet idleness and leisure
A man of few words who does not admire prosperity or glory.
Loves to read books, but does not seek to analyze them
All he wants is the gist and the feeling.

When they are discovered, so much joy he forgets to eat.
His natural temperament is to love drinking wine
But his household is so poor, not often able to get it

Old relatives know this, so they buy it for him, and beckon him to join them.
When he drinks, he enjoys it to the fullest
Until he becomes completely drunk:
When drunk he retires with feelings of generosity and disregards formal good-byes.

House walls barely keep out the elements
Do not shelter the sun and winds:
Short clothing coarse and brown, patched over many times

Round, bamboo rice container and gourd ladle, time and again are empty
His ease and comfort like these too.
Often composes poems to amuse himself
One can always find in them self-will.

Forget to dwell upon things won or lost
Will do these same behaviors until death.
Words of praise: Qian Lou’s wife said:
“Don’t worry about poverty and humility
Don’t worry about obtaining wealth and honor.”

These incredible words, are they not like the secluded Mr. Liu?
Merrily drinking wine is best for composing poetry
Because of this, he attracts happiness and joy
Is he like the old emperor Wu Huaishi?
Is he like the times of emperor Ge Tianshi?



Qian Lou: Recruited by both the Lu and Qi kingdoms during the Zhou Dynasty, he refused them both. Chose instead to live in rural seclusion and poverty.

Mr. Liu:  The Five Willow gentleman, which is Tao Yuanming himself.

Wu Huaishi and Ge Tianshi: Both of these men lived before recorded history. Oral traditions reveal that they were excellent leaders of their people, sharing both the wealth and food.

未经允许不得转载:STUDY IN CHINA GLOBAL (SCG) » Tao Yuanming: Biography of the Five Willows Gentleman
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