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251 Back Matter to Cathay [I have not come to the end of Ernest Fenollosa’s notes by a long way,1 nor is it entirely perplexity that causes me to cease from translation. True, I can find little to add to one line out of a certain poem: “You know well where it was that I walked When you had left me.”2 In another I find a perfect speech in a literality which will be to many most unacceptable. The couplet is as follows:3 ] [抽 刀 斷 水 水 更 流] Chu to dan sui sui ko riu Drawing sword cut into water water again flow But—{as} drawing sword and cutting water, the water again unites/+ flows [Drawing sword, cut into water, water again flow] [舉 杯 消 愁 愁 更 愁] Kiŏ hai sho shu shu ko shu raise cup quench sorrow sorrow again sorrow (not personal but social) So, raising cups and drowning our sorrows, the sorrow is still there. [Raise cup, quench sorrow, sorrow again sorry.”] [There are also other poems, notably the “Five colour Screen,”4 in which Professor Fenollosa was, as an art critic, especially interested, and Rihaku’s sort of Ars Poetica,5 which might be given with diffidence to an audience of good will. But if I give them, with the necessary breaks for explanation, and a tedium of notes, it is quite certain that the personal hatred in which I am held by many, and the invidia which is directed against me because I have dared openly to declare my belief in certain young artists,6 will be brought to bear first on the flaws of such translation, and will then be merged into depreciation of the whole book of translations. Therefore I give only these unquestionable poems. E. P.] 252 Cribs for Cathay & Other Poems Notes BACK MATTER TO CATHAY This is the end of Cathay as it was printed in 1915, but when Lustra was published the following year, Pound expanded the section “Cathay” by the four poems immediately following in this edition. In some sense, then, “Cathay” as a cycle is truly completed only within Lustra a year later. The shorter Chinese poems adapted from Giles’s translations were printed outside the “Cathay” division of Lustra, and appear at the end of this edition beginning with “After Ch’u Yuan.” 1. by a long way: Indeed, Pound drafted translations for a great many poems and fragments from Fenollosa’s notebooks both while working on Cathay and also in subsequent years, only a small portion of which have been transcribed and published by scholars since his death, where much scholarship remains to be done. There are also many poems in the cribs that Pound evidently never tried to translate. 2. You know well . . . you had left me: These lines also appear in a typescript draft of “Fragments” including other unpublished draft translations from Li Bo (100–4230: n.p.). 3. The couplet is as follows: The parallel couplet is excerpted from Li Bo’s “Poem Presented to Secretary Shuyun Upon Parting at Xie Tao Tower in Xuan Province” (宣州謝朓樓餞別校書叔雲詩), which appears immediately after the cribs for “Leave-Taking Near Shoku” (101–4236:94r). This is the penultimate couplet of the poem. (For the final couplet, see the notes to the last line of “Poem by the Bridge at Ten-Shin.”) 4. Five Color Screen: Pound is undoubtedly thinking of Li Bo’s Dangtu Zhaoyan shaofu fentu shanshui ge 當塗趙炎少府粉圖山水歌 (Song on a Landscape Painting by Zhaoyan from Dangtu, Chamberlain of Palace Revenues), which Fenollosa studied with Mori and Ariga on March 11, 1900 (101–4236:20v–28r). The cribs are extensively annotated with commentaries. Pound’s draft translation survives in typescript (100–4230: no. 134). 5. Rihaku’s sort of Ars Poetica: Pound almost certainly means the first in the series of Li Bo’s “Fiftynine Ancient Airs” (古風五十九首), in which Li Bo declares his personal challenge of taking up the reform of poetry by returning to antiquity (复元古) in all of its clarity and truthfulness (清真) after a millennium of waywardness. Its importance was recognized by the Qianlong Emperor, who placed it as the first poem in his collectanea, TSSC (see the headnote to “The River Song”). Unfolding an allusion to the ancient Classic of Poetry, Mori paraphrases the first couplet as: “Such great poems as those of the Shu [Zhou 周] dynasty/have not for long been made. And if I do not make them, who will do it?” Then he comments: “He believes it his mission to revive poetry—” (100–4235:16r). Pound drafted...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780823281398
Related ISBN
9780823281060
MARC Record
OCLC
1076879185
Pages
364
Launched on MUSE
2018-12-06
Language
English
Open Access
No
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