Thoughts on a still night
Before my bed, the moon is shining bright,
I think that it is frost upon the ground.
I raise my head and look at the bright moon,
I lower my head and think of home.
This poem is a Chinese “Jueju” poetry written by Li Bai. Li bai is a famous Chinese poet who likes to write in romantic style. This poem is telling how this person is away from home to experience nature. He is separated from his family. Since Li Bai is Taoist, he loves to be one on one with nature. This is why he left his family to be with nature. “I think that it is frost upon the ground. I raise my head and look at the bright moon” these two lines are showing how he really loves and admires the nature. Li Bai used imagery so that we could sort of imagine what the setting is like. For example, bright moon and frost upon the ground these are some examples of imagery. He is also using some cultural connections as well.
The sunset clouds are gathered far away, it’s clear and cold,
The Milky Way is silent, I turn to the jade plate.
The goodness of this life and of this night will not last for long,
Next year where will I watch the bright moon?
This poem is a Chinese “Jueju” poetry written by Su Shi. This poem is written on behalf of Mid-Autumn day. This day for Chinese people is to express their feelings with moon as their subject. In the last line of the poem we can tell that this day only comes once a year and Su Shi is waiting for next year. He probably won’t be at the same place next year which is why he is unsure about where he will be on Mid-Autumn Day next year. This poem also portrays that Su Shi doesn’t want this night to be over. In this poem, Su Shi uses imagery throughout the poem. For example, “sunset clouds .. clear and cold, bright moon.”
In both of the poems we can see that the moon was emphasized. I think for Chinese poets who mainly write about nature they all include moon as a subject somewhere. In both of these poems moon was definitely one important part as both the authors described moon in their poems. In Chinese culture moon represents family and reunion and similar to second poem by Su Shi the Mid-Autumn Day is something to do with the moon. Moon is a important part of the Chinese culture.