Visiting Pai-an Pavilion

Hsieh Ling-yun

Translated by Sam Hamill
Beside this dike, I shake off the world's dust,
enjoying walks alone near my brushwood house.
A small stream gurgles down a rocky gorge.
Mountains rise beyond the trees,
kingfisher blue, almost beyond description,
but reminding me of the fisherman's simple life.
From a grassy bank, I listen
as springtime fills my heart.
Finches call and answer in the oaks.
Deer cry out, then return to munching weeds.
I remember men who knew a hundred sorrows,
and the gratitude they felt for gifts.
Joy and sorrow pass, each by each,
failure at one moment, happy success the next.
But not for me. I have chosen freedom
from the world's cares. I chose simplicity.
From Crossing the Yellow River: Three Hundred Poems from the Chinese, translated and edited by Sam Hamill. Translation copyright © 2000 by Sam Hamill. Reprinted by permission of translator and publisher. All rights reserved.

Further Reading

Thanks and Gratitude
A List of Praises
by Anne Porter
A Toast
by Ilya Kaminsky
Around Us
by Marvin Bell
by Marilyn Nelson
For the Fallen
by Laurence Binyon
For the Twentieth Century
by Frank Bidart
Lift Every Voice and Sing
by James Weldon Johnson
Mass for the Day of St. Thomas Didymus [excerpt]
by Denise Levertov
Rabbi Ben Ezra
by Robert Browning
Slow Waltz Through Inflatable Landscape
by Christian Hawkey
by Eleanor Lerman
Thank You For Saying Thank You
by Charles Bernstein
by W. S. Merwin
Thanksgiving Letter from Harry
by Carl Dennis
The Culture of Glass
by Thylias Moss
The Routine Things Around the House
by Stephen Dunn
The Teacher
by Hilarie Jones
The Thanksgivings
by Harriet Maxwell Converse
The Triumph of Time
by Algernon Charles Swinburne
Two Countries
by Naomi Shihab Nye
What Was Told, That
by Jalalu'l-din Rumi