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“Ershisi fan huaxinfeng” 二十四番花信風 by Dong Gao 董誥 pt. 2


Picture credit: National Palace Museum, Taipei


冉冉淩波洛浦

粉蕤雅伴玉堂

衝寒能耐嚴飈拂,

引領羣芳次第[1]


小寒三候水仙


Gracefully tripping on the ripples, coming by the riverside of Luo,

The tender burgeons make elegant companions of the plum blossoms at the Jade Hall.[2]

Facing up to the coldness, [they] can withstand the sweep of the harshest tempest,

Leading the host of flowers to blossom, one after another.


The third pentad after Moderate Cold: daffodil


葉青花紫錦雲

耐雪迎風結瑞

候近歲寒弥散彩,

先將冷骨傲東


大寒一候瑞香


Green leaves, purple flowers: a garment of flamboyant clouds.

Withstanding snow, facing winds, [they] bear auspicious aroma.[3]

The pentad coming closer to the coldest time of the year, [they] spread colours,

Standing up proudly with icy bones in front of August of the East.[4]


The first pentad after Severe Cold: winter daphne [5]

[1] Red characters rhyme. [2] Yutang 玉堂 (Jade Hall) is a metaphor for palace. [3] The name of the flower ruixiang 瑞香 (winter daphne) literally reads “auspicious aroma”. [4] Donghuang 東皇 (August of the East) is a metaphor for spring. [5] This year, the day of Severe Cold fell on 20 January.


 

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