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Unlike most Chinese poetry, which requires about 7 billion years of specialized study to understand (and which I won’t even attempt without a translation handy), this poem, originally found in the online version of Youth Digest magazine, is fairly short, only mildly abstract, and extremely melancholy.

Interesting Vocabulary

逆风 – nì fēng – Against the wind
脸庞 – liǎn páng – Face
跳跃 – tiào yuè – Leap, skip


不知从何时起 喜欢逆风行走 感受花瓣吹向脸庞
仿佛那是白的、黄的、粉的蝴蝶在空中跳跃
不知从何时起 喜欢逆风奔跑 望着风筝越飞越高
仿佛自己的梦想在空中自由飞翔

小时候 是坐在父亲高大的自行车横档 感受他的怀抱
后来 坐在他身后 叽叽喳喳地讲着一天的新鲜事儿
现在 是坐在他的斜后边 静静地看着他的各种动作
越来越远 是的 越来越远

See the original poem

SHOW ENGLISH TRANSLATION »

I don’t know when it started   I like to walk against the wind   feel the petals blowing against my face
They’re like white, yellow and pink butterflies skipping in the air
I don’t know when it started   I like to run against the wind   gazing at the kites getting farther away as they go higher
They’re like my own dreams flying in the air

When I was small   I sat on the handles of my father’s tall bicycle   and felt his embrace
Later, I sat behind him   and chattered on about the things that had happened that day
Now, I sit on the slope behind him   quietly watching him go about his day
Farther and farther away   truly   farther and farther away.



One comment to "The House Behind Me"

  1. Reply Patrick McAsey says: June 27, 2015 at 2:11 am

    Melancholy, yes, but what a beautiful poem! I have a question and a suggestion.

    Are the spaces after the phrases in place of punctuation?

    You might have this one already, but I suggest a good intermediate level poem would be Qing Ming (清明) by the Tang poet Du Mu (杜牧); so spare but so moving!


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