18 July, 2019

NOT About My Past

I'm just going to blather about nothing for a bit.

I sat at supper alone the other night and wrote out a blog post I thought I'd share yesterday, but then it sounded absurdly personal and maybe a bit whiny, so I never typed it in. Am I the only one who, as an adult, finds out things from the past and gets to feeling resentful? It's not a good feeling, and I'm not proud of it, especially since everyone is just making their choices of what to say and what to do in the moment as we progress through this journey called life, and how can I objectively remember how I behaved back then, and whether or not my actions and attitude caused another person to withhold information that now I wish I'd known?

I'm doing a lot of internal work on ... oh I don't know, call it "mindfulness" - that's part of it - but also on trying to accept people/things/situations without negativity. That needs to include the past. It's not instinctive for me.

[I'm not talking about supressed trauma. That's different. Just tiny things that if you'd known then, maybe you would be different now? Maybe would have helped?]

But the thoughts I wrote down the other night are a step backward, so here I am sharing inanities!
How I write.

I sent my novel to a few Beta-readers last weekend, so I've been taking a week off from writing or editing. Maybe I'm drifting a bit.

I started looking up this ancient Chinese poet: Du Fu (Also translated as Tu Fu. I know, you were confused by the "D".) I took a picture of the full moon the other night, so the first poem I looked up was called "Moonlit Night". Not at all related to my picture, but here they both are:
It was a full moon, and I was walking home from supper through the rice paddies. Heaven.
The text of "Moonlit Night" as translated by the first website I clicked on:

The moon shines in Fuzhou tonight,
In her chamber, she watches alone.
I pity my distant boy and girl-
They don't know why she thinks of Chang'an.
Her cloud-like hair is sweet with mist,
Her jade arms cold in the clear moonlight.
When shall we lean in the empty window,
Together in brightness, and tears dried up?

I'm no poet, and yes, it's a translation, but even so I feel that I need to take a course in Chinese poetry if I'm ever to understand what the heck it means! 😂

Any insight from any poetry lovers? Maybe I just need to read more of this Ancient Chinese Dude, to get into his head. The last ancient poetry I read was Beowulf. I loved that one, but epic poems are easier I think, because they tell a story.

See? I told you I'd blather about nothing. What nothing is new with you?


  1. I feel I have to deal with the things I am resentful about before I can move on. And there is a lot, believe me! Loved your moon picture. The poem.....not so much.

    1. I've never been much of a poetry person. Except the ones that tell a story. Probably because I'm a storyteller!

  2. It's not a step backwards to talk about the things that you're feeling resentful for. It's the best way to clear them. That they're coming up now is also something to think about. Why now? There's probably some resonance to stuff you're dealing with right now that seeing this old issue parallels. So, dealing with the old also clears out the new.

    1. You're right. And I have talked. Now I really need to let go. Holding on to the negativity is where the danger lies.

  3. I couldn't possibly help you with Du Fu, but I asked someone who I thought could - and here you go...

    "Sometimes the trick with reading any poetry is construing the dramatic situation, often based on not a lot of information.  One of the constant facts of Du Fu's life was that he was constantly traveling, as he was a civil servant, and he was often isolated from his family.  I don't have access to a commentary or anything here, but as I read the poem, Du Fu is on one of his countless separations from his family in service to the government:  he would be sent to Ch'ang-an, which was then the dynastic capital (it's the city now called Sian--it's where you go to see the tomb soldiers).  His family would be back in Fuzhou.  The "she" of the second line would be Du Fu's wife; in the third line, the boy and girl are his son and daughter.  (One of the great poems in Chinese is Du Fu's poem "The Journey North," which tells of his return home during a famine, and of the death of his son--it's heart-rending.)  His wife is thinking of Ch'ang-an, where her husband is posted.  He describes her in the second quatrain, and wishes they could be together."

    See this book note on Du Fu

    1. (and cyberspace ate my reply...)

      I guess it really helps to know about the poet in order to understand the poem. Thanks!


I enjoy a good debate. Feel free to shake things up. Tell me I'm wrong. Ask me why I have such a weird opinion. ...or, just laugh and tell how this relates to you and your life.