On Failing to Meet the Recluse of West Peak

On the mountain top:
one thatched hut,

thirty li
from nowhere.

Knock on the door:
no servant to answer.

Look in:
only a table for tea.

The firewood cart
is covered;

have you gone fishing
in the autumn stream?

I looked among the pools,
but missed you;

wanting to pay my respects,
they must go unexpressed.

Grass shines
in the fresh rain;

pines murmur
at evening windows.

Here, at this moment,
a harmony deep and unrivaled;

the self completely cleansed,
the heart, the ear.

Although there is no
guest and host precisely,

I'm able to intuit
your pure thought.

Purpose fulfilled,
I head back down the mountain;

what need now
to wait for you?

    --Ch'iu Wei (694-ca. 789)

Mike O'Connor | Sakura
Contents | Mudlark No. 7