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趙戣《錦鶒夜逸》“A Brocade Mandarin Duck Missing Overnight” by Zhao Kui (fl. 12th – 13th century)









Grassy paths meandering thick along the brook far off from the village,

Who lifted the bar and set loose the lone Mandarin duck?

In the woods [I] searched through hidden cliffside huts,

Along winding banks [I] foraged through the roots of Manchurian wild rice.

First [I] was tempted to install nets [against] rat raids at night,

And feared in faint moonlight foxes would exploit the twilight.

As dead shells and dried stalks had covered up [suspicious] traces,

An old stable hand urged me to enhance the fences.

* From Xin’an wenxianzhi 新安文獻志 (Wenyuange yingyin Siku quanshu 文淵閣景印四庫全書 vol. 1375-76, Shanghai: Shanghai guji chubanshe, 1987), 59.6a-b:

[1] Red characters rhyme.

"Kuhe xichi tu" 枯荷鸂鶒 by Zhang Zhong 張中 (fl. 14 th century)

Picture credit: National Palace Museum, Taipei


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