get out of the burning house now.
Three carts await outside
to save you from a homeless life.
Relax in the village square
before the sky, everything's empty.
No direction is better or worse,
East just as good as West.
Those who know the meaning of this
are free to go where they want.
'The Collected Songs of Cold Mountain' (Mandarin Chinese and English Edition)
By Cold Mountain (Han Shan) (Author), Red Pine
A Zen-Taoist poetry classic, in a handsome Chinese-English format
This definitive translation of Han Shan’s poetry appears in a bilingual Chinese-English format. Included are extensive notes, a preface by renowned translator Red Pine, a findings list, and photographs of the cave and surrounding area where Han Shan (“Cold Mountain”) lived.
Cold Mountain is one of the most revered poets in China. He was a Taoist/Buddhist hermit who begged for food at temples, often sang and drank with cowherds, and became an immortal figure in the history of Chinese literature and Zen. His poems were written twelve-hundred years ago on the rocks, trees, and temple walls of China’s Tientai Mountains. This revised edition also includes poems by Han Shan’s colleagues, Pickup (Shih-te) and Big Stick (Feng-kan), translated here for the first time.
As Red Pine begins his Preface, “If China’s literary critics were put in charge of organizing a tea for their country’s greatest poets of the past, Cold Mountain would not be on many invitation lists. Yet no other poet occupies the altars of China’s temples and shines, where his statue often stands alongside immortals and bodhisattvas. He is equally revered in Korea and Japan. And when Jack Kerouac dedicated The Dharma Bums to him in 1958, Cold Mountain became the guardian angel of a generation of Westerners as well.”