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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A re-evaluation of the life and works of Wei Ying-Wu (c.737 - ?) Lim, Chooi Kwa 1976

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A RE-EVALUATION OF THE LIFE AND WORKS OF WEI YING-WU (c.737— ?) by LIM CHOOI KWA B.A., National Taiwan University, 1968 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in the Department of Asian Studies We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA May, 1976 @ Lim Chooi Kwa , 1976 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of Asian Studies The University of British Columbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 Date May 25, 1976 ABSTRACT Traditionally* when c r i t i c s mention Wei Ying-wu, they l i k e to quote the T'ang dynasty scholar* L i Chao's praise of Wei from the T'ang Kuo-shih Pul / f f|f ^ ^ . ^ ] . L i describes Wei as having lofty and pure character, a meagre diet and few desires* he also says that Wei burned incense and swept the floor wherever he lived. Wei i s usually praised merely for the style of his five-character verse which i s described as calm* lucid and leisurely. In addition to discussing the traditional criticism of Wei's character and poetry* this dissertation emphasizes the phases of his personal and l i t e r a r y development that are often overlooked by scholars. My intention i s to present a true picture of Wei's personality and also give a f a i r and just appraisal of his poetry. This dissertation should make i t clear that Wei was not a man who spent his entire l i f e merely burning incense* sweeping the floor and turning his back on reality to l i v e in peace. The fact that his l i f e was much more varied than i t i s usually portrayed i s probably the reason he became such a versatile poet. Although many people have written biographies of Wei, i t i s d i f f i c u l t to find one without errors. Therefore in chapter one I have compared the biographical research of different scholars in order to determine the facts of Wei's l i f e . However, there are s t i l l some errors common to a l l his i i i biographers. In these cases I have given my own suppositions together with the evidence to support my views. In chapter two, I have paid more attention to the liter a r y achievements which others have overlooked rather than to traditional criticism of Wei's poetry. Nevertheless, I have also endeavoured to give examples to support those instances of traditional criticism that, in my opinion, are accurate. In chapter three, after discussing Wei Ying-wu's personality, I have analysed Wei's p o l i t i c a l opinions. This had never been done by previous scholars. Furthermore, I have analysed his attitudes towards society. Only by examining such a broad range of Wei Ying-wu's l i f e and thought can one hope to adequately understand the poet's liter a r y significance. i TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT i i CHAPTER I BIOGRAPHY OF WEI YING-WU (a) Wei's Lineage and Wei Ying-wu's Year of Birth 1 (b) A Young Palace Guard and a Student of the T'ai-hslieh 6 (c) An Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang 20 (d) The Director of the Department of Merits and Subprefect 27 (e) From the Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Judiciary Control to the Prefect of Su Prefecture 37 (f) Wei Ying-wu's Family 54 CHAPTER II THE ARTISTIC ACHIEVEMENT AND STYLE OF WEI'S POETRY (a) Traditional Criticism of Wei's Poetry (i) The Elegant and Sa t i r i c a l Character of Wei's Verse 57 ( i i ) Wei Ying-wu and T'ao Yuan-ming» a Comparison 65 ( i i i ) Some Examples of the Beauty of Wei's Style 70 (b) Further Criticism of Wei's Poetry (i) Humourous and Relaxed Poems 74 ( i i ) Wei's Achievement in Seven-character Verse 77 ( i i i ) Some Inferior Examples of Wei's Verse 82 iv V (c) Two Different Characteristics of Wei's Poetry 83 (d) The Metre of Wei's Poetry 90 CHAPTER III THE PERSONALITY AND THOUGHT OF WEI YING-WU AS EXPRESSED IN HIS POETRY (a) From Spoilt Youngster to Honest O f f i c i a l 101 (b) Wei's P o l i t i c a l Opinions and His Positive Attitude 121 (c) Wei's Negative Attitude 144 BIBLIOGRAPHY 161 CHAPTER I BIOGRAPHY OF WEI YING-WU (a) Wei's Lineage and Wei Ying-wu's Year of Birth Wei Ying-wu was a famous poet of T'ang dynasty. Unfortunately, his biography does not appear in the two o f f i c i a l histories of the T'ang dynasty, the T'ang Shu and Hsin T'ang Shu. As a result, we do not even know what his other names were.*" However, Wei Ying-wu i s mentioned briefly in the " I-wen Chih " of the Hsin T'ang Shut " As for Wei Ying-wu, Shen Ya-chih... they a l l have extant writings? but historians have lost their l i f e stories, so they cannot be 2 mentioned." , Wei Ying-wu has been known as Wei Su-chou pr Wei 3 Chiang-chou due to his having served as prefect of, Su Prefecture and Chiang Prefecture. term and succeeding o f f i c i a l t i t l e s i s based on Robert des Rotours, Traite des Fonctionnaires et Traite de l'armeet  Traduits de l a Nouvelle Histoire des T'ang. Leydei E. J. B r i l l , 1941. 1. According to Chinese tradition, other than the given name, one usually has two other names, known as tzufrj^ and hao [ &jj.] . _ , 1 Wei Ying-wu's native home was at T u - l i n g f ^ i : J^] which was under the jurisdiction of Wan-nien Subprefecture [ j | | J of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture [ $ >I^Jf^J. Tu-ling was 4 twenty l i southeast of Wan-nien Subprefecture. 5 According to Yuan-he Hsinq-tsuan and Hsin T'ang  Shu, the Wei clan moved there in the Han dynasty. The following Chart i s Wei Ying-wu's lineage taken from "Tsai-hsiang Shih-hsi Piao-C'^ H the Hsin T'ang Shut Wei Chien Wei Ch T'ing ET H Wei Tai - c h i i - t n m Wei Ling Wei Ch Wei Ying-4. See L i Chi-fu ^ Yuan-he Chun-hsien  T'u-chih ^ I f . l ^ . j l Chin-ling Shu-chu[/f-f|^|/|jj. 1880 - JH ed.. chiian 1, P.3. 5. Lin Pao J . Yiian-he Hsinq-tsuan J^ Z ^ l£ JcJ. 1802 [ A j j ^ k \] ed., chiian 2, p. 10. 6. Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 74, pp.219-221. (1) Wei Ch'ung, Duke I-feng. President of the Ministry of Finance in the Sui dynasty [ Sui Hu-pu Shang-shu I-feng Rung fff / ^ $t'*^' W e i c h , u n 9 ' s s o n v a B W e i T»ing. (2) Wei T'ing. Prefect of Hsiang Prefecture [ Hsiang-chou Tz'u-shih 'j-ij ^ j j ^ j . Wei T fing*s son was Wei Tai-chia. (3) Wei Tai-chia. Vice-president of the Department of State Affairs of the Right [Wen-ch»ang Yu-hsiang JQ ] during the reign of Empress Wu. Wei Tai-chia*s sons, were Wei Ling-i and Wei Lieh. ( 4 ) Wei Ling-i. Vice-president of the Office of Imperial Family Affairs [ Tsung-cheng Shao-ch*ing ^  i^'^jjj. Wei Ling-i»s second son was Wei Luan. (5) Wei Luan. His o f f i c i a l t i t l e i s not mentioned i n the Hsin T'ang Shu. In the T»u-hui Pao-chien, under the name of Wei Yen[^!{f^], i t states, " His father, Wei Luan, whose highest o f f i o i a l position was Assistant Director of Imperial Workshops [ Shao-chiencrJ* ] . " 7 Wei Ying-wu was the son of Wei Luan. (6) Wei Ying-wu. Prefect of Su Prefecture [ Su-chou T z ' u - s h i h ^ t ' j f i i j -Wei Tai-chia, the great grandfather of Weji Ying-wu, served Empress Wu as Vice-president of the Department of State Affairs of the Right. It was Empress Wu who changed the name of the Shang-shu Shengf^^ ^ ] to Wen-ch»ang T ^ a i C ^ d ^ J i n 7. See Hsia Wen-yen C j l ^ ^ f ] • T»u-hui Pao-chien J - f x ^ S Shanghai* Jen-min Mei-shu Ch«u-pan-she[^'(lf(Jk $ ^4i]t 1962 ed., p.22 8 the ninth month of the Kuang-chai era (684) . Thus, the Tso Yu P'u-yeh[j^. fa f|fj|pwas called the Wen-ch'ang Tso Yu Hsiang Q^jf) tj-ffl. T n e Biography of Wei Tai-chia appears g i n the T'ang Shu, and also in the Hsin T'ang Shu. Nielson, in his The T'ang Poet Wei Ying-wu and His  Poetry, i s mistaken when he says that Wei Tai-chia served the Sui dynasty (581-618) as prime minister. 1 0 This opinion may be based on Shen Tso-che who, in his " Supplement to The Biography of Prefect Wei ", states incorrectly that Wei Tai-chia served the Sui dynasty as the Tso P'u-yeh.11 Having observed the above-mentioned lineage, we know that Wei Ying-wu came from a rather noble family. Even so, there i s no record concerning the year of his birth« but there i s a line i n one of his poems which mentions his having reached •adulthood' [jo-kuan. $1 J When I reached adulthood, I encountered a period-of anarchy. 1 2 8. See Ssu-ma Kuang[aj j^ ]^ , Tzu Chih T'ung-chien >j| V&4j4jt]« Pekingi Ku-chi ch'u-pan-she | | 1956 ed., chiian 203, P. 6421. 9. See Liu Hsuj^f'j T'ang Shu{/f^\ . Hongkong i Wen-hsueh Yen-chiu-she[$^ff j j f » 1959 ed.,chiian 77, P.277, and Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 98, P. 284. 10. See Thomas Peter Nielson, The T'ang Poet Wei  Ying-wu and His Poetry, PH. D. Thesis,1969. University Micro-films, Inc., Ann Arbor, Michigan, P. 7. 11. Shen Tso-chefy^Jz Mj/'Pu Wei Chih-shih Chuan" [~ -$l\4U&] i n • Wei Chiang-chou Chi'PJpl >HJ j^]P. 67. Ssu-pu  Ts'ung-k'an lstSe&.,[i4)J^^4Jf</}.4J$. Shanghait Commercial Press. 1936 ed. ' 12. Ch'uan T'ang Shih \/^)\' l ^ L hereafter CTS, 1703 [/f Han 3, Ts'e 7, Wei Ying-wu chiian 3, P. 5. The translation i s Nielson*s op. c i t . , P.35. 5 According to old Chinese tradition, a young man was addressed with the expression ' jo-kuan •, when he was about twenty years old. Therefore, when the Empire was thrown into anarchy by the rebellion of An Lu-shan, Wei was about the age of twenty. Since the rebellion began in the eleventh month of the fourteenth year of the T*ien-pao era (755 A*D>)> therefore, Nielson states in his thesis, " If i t i s assumed that Wei was twenty years old at the time of the rebellion, his date of birth would be 736i' ; 1 3 According to the traditional method of calculating age in China, an individual i s one year old as soon as he i s born; he i s then considered two years old when he passes through the f i r s t lunar new year after his birth. Thereafter, one year i s added with the passing of each lunar new year. When the date of birth i s not given but the subject's age at a later date i s known, the year of his birth may be determined by subtracting the given age from the year and then adding one additional year • Holding a slightly different opinion, Lo Lien-t'ien regards • a period of anarchy • as referring to the year when An Lu-shan's rebel army captured the capital Ch'ang-an, and Emperor Hsuan-tsung fled to Ch'eng-tu in Shu (Sze-chuan). 1 A This incident happened in 756 , which extended from the fifteenth year of the T'ien-pao era to the f i r s t year of the 13. See Nielson, op. c i t . , pp.4-5. 14. See Ssu-ma Kuang, op. c i t . , chuan 218, pp.6962-87. 1 Chih-te era. For this reason, Lo Lien-t'ien suggests that Wei Ying-wu was born in the year of 737, w one year later than Nielson*s conjecture. As a matter of fact, 'jo-Jcuan* can cover the years immediately preceding and following a young man's twentieth 17 birthday. Furthermore, in Chinese five-character poetry, as in the lines quoted above, because of the restriction of the number of characters i n each l i n e , the poet cannot always be precise in recording numbers. Due to these facts, we can only say that when Wei Ying-wu reached adulthood, he was around the age of twenty. So his year of birth could probably be 737, or 736 or even two or three years earlier or later than these. (b) A Young Palace Guard and a Student of the T'ai-hslieh Neither his poetry nor the interlinear commentaries, which are believed to have been written by Wei Ying-wu himself, reveal any facts about his childhood. However, there are some 15 . In the Seventh month of the fifteenth year of the T'ien-pao era, L i Hengf^ , the third son of Emperor Hsuan-tsung came to the throne, he immediately changed the name of the era to Chih-te. See Ou-yang Hsiu,op. c i t . , chiian 6, P. 21, 16. Lo Lien-t'ienjlp " Wei Ying-wu Shih-chi Hsi-nien $ fi$$Jfi*a Yu-ihih Hsueh-chihto 3#,f ftkl. 8 (1). Taipei t Yu-shih Wen-hua Shih-yeh Ku-fen Yu-hsi'en Kung-ssu I fy> titf £j<jff, fb&$ (ii March, 1969, P.IO. ' 17. See Lu Fei-kuei [ f - t - f , Tz'u H a i p ^ ^ l . Taipei* Chung-hua Shu-chu[(#^'/ | 'y».f)] , 1961 ed., P. 1082. 7 poems that describe his joining the palace guard. He was already fifteen years old at that time. Feasting with L i , the Clerk of the Court I served at the emperor's court with you at fifteen years of age. Where mornings we passed through heavy incense and ascended vermilion s t a i r s . Flowers bloomed i n the Imperial Garden where we passed by; Snow f e l l on Mount L i , where we bathed. Those who served close to the emperor. are scattered, but are s t i l l a live. The emperor i s roving as an immortal, nowhere to tee;met. Meeting you this day we r e c a l l old times; In this cup of wine i s happiness— and sadness. 1 8 As a favourite guard of Emperor Hsuan-tsung, Wei Ying-wu always followed the emperor and his Precious Concubine, Yang Kuei-fei whenever they went to the hot spring at Hua-ch'ing Palace on Mount L i . Here i s a poem describing one such excursion. 18. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.4. Except for the t i t l e and lines 5. arid 6 which incorporate my own interpretation, the translation follows Nielson, op. c i t . , pp.9-10. 8 Warm Springs How many years nave passed since I began serving in the T'ien-pao era, Obtuse as hammer-head, my destiny i s paper-thin. Being untalented as an o f f i c i a l I can only return home} I am but a common man of Tu-ling. In the bitter north wind I head towards Warm Springs, And abruptly remember the former emperor's imperial excursions. Riding a palace horse, holding the emperor's insignia, I entered straight into Hua-ch'ing Palace and stood in rank before the throne. The white-jade trees and snow covered the whole of cold mountain. We ascended to the far pavilion and roamed in crimson mists. At dawn I stood guard while a l l nations came to court) Horses and carriages crushed into the land surrounding the palace. Due to the emperor's kindness, I often bathed in the Hua-ch'ing Palace Pool; And when in the hunting retinue we could not trample fiel d s north of the Wei River. Having no troubles with which to cope, the entire court feasted gaily, With beautiful women and music from the ninth heaven. One day when the Emperor went to heaven, I grasped the whiskers of the dragon, t i l l broken, 1.9 but I could no longer follow him. Now, when I come back, i t i s bleak and desolate, and a l l the houses are empty, The only v i s i b l e activity i s the mist r i s i n g around the blue mountain. Being poor, I f e l l and was lost in the turmoil, I raise a cry to heaven, but to what avail ? My emaciated horse and I, my clothes torn,were about to freeze to death. 19. Here Wei Ying-wu uses an allusion from Shih Chit The Yellow Emperor or Huang-ti mined copper at Mount Shou[|jf J~i] , and cast a bronze tripod under Mount Ching[^ij J.jj. when the tripod was ready, a dragon with whiskers came down to welcome the Yellow Emperor, and the Emperor mounted the dragon followed by more than seventy concubines and vassals.When the dragon rose, the other followers were unable to accompany him, so they grasped the whiskers of the drogon. Unfortunately, the whiskers came out by their roots. See Ssu-ma Ch*ien J ^ i ^ J , Feng-shan Shu" [ ^ A^]in Shih Chif"j*yf^j. Hongkongi Wen-hsueh Y e n - c h i u - s h e f $ f f \ J ^ \ 1959 ed., chiian 28, P. 117. 10 But fortunately I met you whose wine cups 20 are f u l l . During his service as a favourite guard, he was carefree and sometimes even a trouble maker. Meeting Colonel Yang 21 In ray youth I served Emperor Wu, A young rascal I relied on him for personal favour. I was a trouble maker in my neighbourhood. And sheltered ruffians in my home. Mornings I kept on gambling, Evenings I sneaked over to the beautiful 22 g i r l of ray eastern neighbour. 20. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, P. 4. The translation except for lines 1, 9, 17, 18, 19, 21 and 23, i s Nielson*s op.cit., pp. 12-14. 21. Emperor Wu referred to T»ang Hsuan-tsung. In the thirteenth year of the T*ien-pao era, T*ang Hsuan-tsung was given the t i t l e • K*ai-yuan T»ien-ti Ta-pao Sheng-wen Shen-wu Cheng-tao Hsiao-te Huang-ti • [!*|[ ^ KtjLKlf f Sjj JMfi$£$t£ J by his officers, so he could be called Emperor Wu too. See Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . .chiian 5, P.20. 22. ' Beautiful g i r l of my eastern neighbour, * i s an allusion from " Mei-jen Fu H["j^ A^IJ$$, Ssu-raa Hsiang-jus M There i s a g i r l who i s my eastern neighbour, her hair i s glorious..." 111 t$ify"> 4 , <f jiit ••-]'• See Ssu-ma Hsiang-Jul /) jf> J$M1 ' S s u ~ m a wen-yiaan C h i f r J % fjSjffilin Han Wei liu-ch»ao Pai-san-chia Chi [ j$ |t|> ^ |j r ffc. Edited by Chang : Wc|jJ^$]. Hsin-shu-fang Ch»ung-ke Penfff <f^ » 1 8 7 9 i% & W * ] ed., p.17. ' Police constables dared not arrest me, Because I was a guard of the White Jade Palace. I spent windy and snowy nights at Mount L i , And carried the Emperor's arrows when hunting at Ch'ang-yang. I did not Know even a single written word. Drinking wine I disclosed my asininity. When the Emperor became an immortal, People took advantage of my plight. It was too late to get an education, So I took up the pen and learned to write poetry. ... The above poem describes how Wei Ying-wu behaved when he was a young palace guard, gambling, philandering, drinking wine, making trouble, sheltering ruffians, doing a l l sorts of bad things. Observing his words " did not know even a single written word," we know that when he f i r s t joined the palace guard, he must not have studied at T'ai-hsueh yet. For this reason, i t seems d i f f i c u l t to believe that Wei Ying-wu had studied at the T'ai-hsueh before he became a palace guard, as Nielson states. In "Supplement to the Biography of Prefect Wei " , although Shen Tso-che does not mention the 23. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, P. 14. Except for the t i t l e and lines 1, 2, 5-8 and 11, the translation appears in Nielson, op. c i t . , pp. 32-33. 24. Nielson, op. cit.,pp. 8-10. years Wei Ying-wu studied at the T'ai-hsueh* according to the order of the events occurring i n that biography, i t seems that Shen Tso-che also wrongly regards this event as 25 occurring before Wei Ying-wu became a palace guard. However, according to a poem that Wei Ying-wu sent to an old friend, we know that he was a youngster when he was a student at the T'ai-hsiieh. To An Old Friend When young, I studied at the T*ai-hsueh, I arrogantly sneered at the other students. Thirty years have wasted by, 26 Now Z have to go to the coastal region. The evidence of the above poem clearly shows that Wei Ying-wu had not entered the T'ai-hs'ueh before he was a palace guardi but he did study there when he was young. So we must try to discover under what conditions and during which years he studied there. With reference to the above poem, the coastal region referred to i s presumably Su Prefecture. That i s to say, Wei ying-wu went to take up the appiontment as prefect in Su Prefecture about thirty years after he and his old friend had studied at the T'ai-hsueh. 25. Shen Tso-che, op. c i t . , P. 67. 26. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, P. 10. Except for lines 2 and 4, the translation appears in Nielson, op. c i t . , P. 14 13 Wei Ying-wu served as Prefect of Su Prefecture from the fourth year of the Chen-yuan era (788). 2 7 This probably i s the reason why Lo Lien-t'ien suggests that Wei Ying-wu entered the T'ai-hsueh i n 758 2 8 , when he was about twenty-two years o l d . 2 9 T'ai-hsueh, Kuo-tzu-hsueh, and Ssu-men hsiieh, were a l l under the jurisdiction of the Kuo-tzu-chien [ (f| ^ ^L] during the T'ang dynasty. The " L i - i Chih " in the T'ang  Shu states t " In accordance with a former rule , there were over two thousand students i n the Kuo-tzu-chien in both capitals .... They a l l received grants-in-aid from the government. In the fifteenth year( of the T'ien-pao era i.e. 756) as the main Capital f e l l into the hands of the enemy, this practice was discontinued. Since the war had not ceased by the f i r s t year of the Ch'ien-yuan era (758), the emperor by proclaimation halted a l l the study in prefectural and subprefectural schools u n t i l the next bumper year 3 0 , "... from the Chih-te era (756-758) onwards, 27. See part (e) in this chapter. 2B. See Lo Lien-t'ien, op. c i t . , P. 14. 29. The ages given in this paper are according to the Chinese method of calculation and i t i s assumed that Wei Ying-wu was born in 737 A. D. 30. Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chuan 24, P. 107. Two Capitals are referred to Ch'ang-an and . Lo-yangj the main Capital being Ch'ang-an. 14 war never ceased. Hence, as the students of Kuo-tzu -chien could not get grants-in-aid from the government, they a l l dispersed. The school buildings f e l l into ruin and the government repeatedly allowed soldiers to l i v e i n them .... •* 3 1 From these records, we know that beginning from the fifteenth year of the T'ien-pao era (756), throughout the years of the Chih-te era, Ch*ien-yuan era and thence-forth, the T'ai-hsueh was not in operation. For this reason, the suggestion that Wei Ying-wu enrolled in the T'ai-hsueh in the f i r s t year of the Ch'ien-yiian era (758) can scarcely compel our agreement. During the subsequent Kuang-te era (763-765), there was some improvement in educational a f f a i r s . In the second year of the era (764), the emperor proclaimed, "In ancient times, the T'ai-hsueh was established to educate the heirs: of the n o b i l i t y J - J ; even in years of bad harvest or in war time, the affairs relating to sacrifices were never discarded. In recent years, war has broken out from time to time, and the students have ceased to attend the lectures. Now i t i s a suitable time to c a l l " . the students back to schools to study. The government should e s t i -mate their expenditures and provide their l i v i n g 32 expenses, " This constitutes clear evidence that the T'ai-hsueh was reopened i n the second year of the Kuang-te era and also supports Yao K'uan's opinion that Wei Ying-wu entered the 31. Same as footnote 30. 32. Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 44, P. 111. 15 33 T'ai-hsueh two years after the death of Emperor Hsuan-tsung. Emperor Hsiian-tsung died in the fourth month of the 34 Yuan-nien (762). Two years later f e l l in the second year of the Kuang-te era. Since i n the f i r s t year of the Kuang-te era (763), Wei Ying-wu had already been appointed as Assistant 35 Subprefect of Lo-yang, i t would have been impossible for him to attend the T'ai-hsueh at the same time. Moreover, from the lines of his poem we have mentioned abovet " When the emperor became an immortal, People took advantage of my plight. It was too late to get an education, So I took up the pen and learned to write poetry.- 3 6 It seems that Wei Ying-wu never returned to the T'ai-hsueh after the death of Emperor Hsiian-tsung. 33. Yao K»uan[4Ji^] , - Shu Ke Fan Chiao Wei-chi Hou -E l " & W e i Chiang-chou e h i f f i v i K) p.65, Ssu-pu Ts'unq-k'an lstsev., pp. c i t . 34. See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chiian 9, p. 13, also Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 5, p.20. Yiian-nien[^ j^-] was the name given to the period between the Shang-yuan [ J; jfo] era and the Pao-yingL^ era of Emperor. Su-tsung. See Ch'en Yuan [ f< 1 $ J » Erh-shih Shih Shuo Juen PiaoT .i < ^  ^ff fi] | j . Pekingt J Ku-chi Ch'u-pan-she ;|| ^ '%^v\956.ied*, p,98. T'ang Hsiian-tsung died on the f i f t h day of the fourth month of the Yiian-nien era. On the fifteenth day .of.,the same month, the name of the era was changed to Pao-ying. 35. See p.20 36. cf. p.lOVit. 16 Taking into consideration the condition and environ-ment of Wei Ying-wu, i t seems that the time he was admitted as a student i n the T'ai-hsueh must be the time he was s t i l l a palace guard before the rebellion of An Lu-shan. The record in the " Hsuan-chu Chih" gives us quite clear evidences " ... on the days when the guards known as * San-wei 'pi- f$f] were not on duty, they could be admitted to study in the Kuo-tzu-hsiieh, T'ai-hsueh)and Lii-kuan i f they liked .... " 3 7 Since Wei Ying-wu was a palace guard, he was qualified to enrol at T'ai-hsueh when he was not on duty. According to the rule established i n the eleventh year of the K'ai-yuan era (723), each year a guard served a tour of six months. That i s to say, every guard needed to take up his duty for six months in each year. Here i s the rules " On the twentieth day of the eleventh month of the eleventh year (K'ai-yuan era), the President of the Ministry of the Army [Ping-pu Shang-shu Ct) "f"J Chang Yueh [!|Lf J^ J established one hundred thousand permanent guards in the Barracks of the South [ Nan-ya ^flj-jfor the emperor. He selected these from m i l i t i a and ordinary citizens i n Ching-chao >jk], P'utvff J , T'ung[(£?], Ch'i^iJand the other prefectures, with the 38 standard height of (five) feet eight. The guards were divided into two tours of duty each year and they were 37. Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chuan 44, p.111. 38. A character ' fiv e •[£Jis missing before f e e t f j U . See Wang Ch'in-jo [ l 4^A]» " Hsiu Wu-pei " f r ^ V ^ l Ts'e Fu Yuan K u e i ^ ^ - ^ f i (1.1 . Pekingt Chung-hua Shu-chu [ ^  ^ J£jtfl » I960 ed., chiian 124, p.l490. 17 not allowed to serve for the prefectures or 39 subprefectures...." According to the emperor's order in the seventh year of the T'ien-pao era (748), the emperor's bodyguards 40 were divided into six groups, and they served by turns. Talcing into account the above-mentioned tours of duty for the guards, we can see that there would have been ample , time for Wei Ying-wu to study at the T'ai-hsueh when he was not on guard i f his tour of duty was not different from what i s stated above. As a favourite guard of the emperor, we should not be surprised to learn that while he was studying at the T'ai-hsueh, he arrogantly sneered at the other students. 4 1 Wei Ying-wu does not say in which year he entered the T'ai-hsueh and how many years he spent there} but we have already learned that from the fifteenth year of the T'ien-pao era (756) to the f i r s t year of the Kuang-te era (763), the T'ai-hsueh was not functioning. For this reason, certainly, the date that Wei Ying-wu l e f t the T'ai-hsueh should not be later than the fifteenth year of the T'ien-pao era when An Lu-shan captured the capital Ch'ang-an. Again, when we refer to the verse " Thirty years have wasted by. Now I have to go to the coastal region.", i t does not mean that 'thirty' represents an exact number of years, i t only means approximately thirty 39. Wang P'u[£y#J. T'ang Hui Yaof/|? . Pekingi Chung-hua Shu-chuL lf-^^hQl » 1957 ed., chiian 72, p. 1298. 40. Wang P'u, op. c i t . , chiian 72, p.1293. 41. See Wei Ying-wu*s poem, supra, p.12. 18 years long. In fact, thirty-two years elapsed from the year he l e f t the T'ai-hsueh to the year he went to Su Prefecture. Where Wei Ying-wu went after he l e f t the T'ai-hsueh, he himself does not mention. Lo Lien-t'ien supposes that since he was a palace guard, i n the fifteenth year of the T'ien-pao era he followed Emperor Hsuan-tsung i n his f l i g h t to Shu, but Lo Lien-t'ien gives no evidence to support th i s . According to the records in.the T'ang Hui Yao, at the end of the T'ien-pao era. Emperor Hsuan-tsung de-emphasized military matters and hence people looked on military men and even the palace guards with contempts At the end of T'ien-pao (742-56), because there was great peace in the Middle Plain, the emperor cultivated the arts of c i v i l i z a t i o n and abandoned military preparation. He had the spear and arrow points melted down in order to weaken the valiant knights of the empire. Thereupon anyone who carried warlike arms was punished and anyone who kept prophetic books was executed. Anyone who practised archery committed a crime. When worthless youths became soldiers their elders repudiated them and would not associate with them. Only in the frontier d i s t r i c t s were large bodies of troops maintained. In the Middle Plain arms and weapons were stored away to show that they would never again be used. Men grew to old age without hearing the sound of war. The men of the Six Armies [an old expression for the emperor's armies] and a l l the guards were a l l ' white-clothed ' fellows from the market place. The rich carried on trade in coloured s i l k s and lived on fine food. The robust played the • horn game *, at tug-o'-war, at l i f t i n g poles and iron weights (?) and day after day neglected the arts of war. When an emergency arose their knees shook and they were incapable of carrying arms. It was no mere case 19 of ill-fortune that after this rebels took advantage 42 of the situation to revolt. Although we have no evidence as to the date when Wei Ying-wu l e f t the post of palace guard, under such circumstances, i t i s most l i k e l y that by the end of the T'ien-pao era, he was no longer holding the post. Perhaps, he was concentrating on his study at the T'ai-hsueh at that time. Thereupon, when Ch'ang-an f e l l to the rebel army, i t does not seem that Wei Ying-wu followed the Emperor Hsiian-tsung to flee to Shu. There were only one thousand guards who followed Emperor Hsiian-tsung to fle e to Shu, and 43 less than hundred guards who followed Su-tsung to Ling-wu. None of Wei's poems mentions a f l i g h t to Shu, also, in his writings, he makes no special mention of any place i n Shu or any familiar thing connected with Shu that he had experienced. Probably he never visited Shu i n his entire lifetime. As for the period when An Lu-shan was in control of the capital Ch'ang-an, Wei possibly fled somewhere else. After that, he went into seclusion at Pao-i Temple in Wu-kung Subprefecture, which was one hundred and forty l i west of 44 Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. Here he lived and studied 42. Wang P'u, op. c i t . , chiian 72, p. 1300. The translation follows Edwin George Pulleyblank, The Background  of the Rebellion of An Ln-shan. Londont Oxford University Press, 1955 ed., p.67. 43.See Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 50, p.126. ' 44.See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 2, p.6. 20 for while. Some years later, when he visited the place again, he wrotet Up to the Old Roaming Place Pao-i Temple"*"' Green range and the temple protrude high into the sky, In f a i r weather the plain i s crowded by myriad 46 houses, and mist-laden trees. Monks and I do not know each other because they came to l i v e here only recently. I s i t down and l i s t e n to the soft b e l l and think 47 of the years past. (c) An Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang After several years of self-education i n Pao-i Temple, Wei Ying-wu met an opportunity to take up a position in the 48 bureaucracy, that of Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang in the Kuang-te era (763-765). At the time Wei Ying-wu was around twenty-seven years old. 45. Commentary i *• The temple i s in Wu-kung, the writer once lived here. . 46. Ch'ing-ch'uan[J?/|j| t the plain in the f a i r weather. See Chang H s i a n g S h i h Tz'u Chu Yu-tz'u  Hui-shih ^ |AS\ S^ipi.^]* Peking i Chung-hua Shu-chii i f 4 4 $ ^ 9 1 9 5 7 e d # * p - 7 1 2 , ' 47. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, P.l. 48. Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang [ Lo-yang Ch'eng M a . 21 Written in Lo-yang in the Kuang-te Era I was born and grew up in peaceful days, Yet, I did not realize the happiness~o£ peaceful times, As I am returning to Lo-yang, I deeply feel how precious peace i s , and my heart i s overcome with bitter suffering. One takes medicine to cure disease; But, unexpectedly, i t may poison the stomach and injure the one who takes i t . When the government forces came across the Yellow and Lo Rivers, 49 They damaged both the jade and the stone. Time has passed without ceasing, Only the river winds around forever and the mountain s t i l l appears green. Lonely and desolate, there i s not even a single line of smoke. When the sun has set, the empty c i t y i s f i l l e d with cold. 50 Like a lame horse, I am unable to run fast. In my low government position, I merely pick up loose ends. 49. Indiscrimate destruction of good and bad alike. 50. Metaphorically, i t means unfit to serve as a high officer. 22 Longing for the Hsien-yang highway to the west, 51 My heart loi t e r s restlessly. The government forces referred to are the a l l i e d forces of Shuo^fang § ) Sheets'e[#f .sjLl and UighursD##lxl» When those forces recaptured the Eastern Capital (Lo-yang) in late 762, they looted and made a clean sweep of almost every house and k i l l e d thousands of people. As a result, the inhabitants of Lo-yang were reduced to wearing paper 52 instead of clothes. Soon afterwards, Tibetans seized Ch*ang-an, and Emperor Tai-tsung fled to Shan Prefecture 5 3[f^)t'{]. As Wei Ying-wu does not mention that incident i n the poem above, i t seems that he l e f t Ch'ang-an to take up the post in Lo-yang before the Tibetans captured Ch'ang-an. In the poem he sent to his younger brothers Tuan, Wu and others at the capital on new year's day, he says," In youth I served i n the government at Ho-yang Superior Prefecture [Ho-yang Puv^fffjfrfyl"' Here he obviously refers to this p ost. 5 4 51. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, p.11. 52. See Ssu-ma Kuang, op. c i t . , chuan 222, p.7135. 53. Ch*ang-an was seized by the Tibetans in the tenth month of the f i r s t year of the Kuang-te era (763). See Ssu-ma Kuang, op. c i t . , chuan 223, p.7150-52. 54. Thomas Nielson and Shen Tso-che both assume that Wei Ying-wu served i n Ho-yang Subprefecture. If this were so, Wei Ying-wu would use * Ho-yang Hsien '[\'£f $f> instead of • Ho-yang Fu ' $% jk~^» Lo-yang was under the jurisdiction of Ho-nan Superior Prefecture [ ^^^7^] in the T'ang dynasty. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 5,pp.1-2, also Nielson, op. c i t . , p.21 and Shen Tso-che, op. c i t . , p.68. Wei's poem i s i n CTS 3/7/ Wei Ying-wu 3, p.8 23 During the T'ang dynasty* an Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang merely belonged to the upper division of the deputy 55 class in the seventh degree, hence, the rank was rather low. In the Yung-t'ai era (765-766), while Wei Ying-wu was s t i l l serving as Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang, he punished some soldiers and was summoned to court by the prefect of Ho-nan Superior Prefecture. At the Same time,his nephew Wei Pan was also summoned to the court for his over-zealous administration of the law. At this time, Wei Ying-wu wrote the following poem with preface referring to both of these incidents t Presented to My Nephew Pan the Chief Clerk of Ho-nan ([Preface}. In the Yung-t'ai era, because I punished cavalrymen when I was the Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang, and at the same time, because my nephew Pan, Chief Clerk of Ho-nan, was also firm and honest in administering the law,both of us were summoned to the court by the Prefect.' I express my ™ feelings with this poem and ask my friends in the Superior Prefecture and Subprefectures not to look l i g h t l y upon i t . 55. Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang, upper division of the deputy class in the seventh degree [f$__)C St i-3 • S e e L i Lung-chifj| jWk} » T a T'ang Liu TienfK /ff ^ jfy* Commentary by L i L i n - f u j ^ ^ ( | ' j . Taipei i Wen-hai Ch'u-pan-she[£v|^ jti^iJ, 1962 ed., chiian 30, pp.513-514. 24 I have always upheld plain, honest administration, And you have preserved justice. 56 Both of our horoscopes contain the Chu-niao vanquishment, And we invited the slander of petty men. In carrying out our administration, we sought to use the scales of justice, 57 But making decisions i s l i k e butting a fence. Not being able to retire to the mountains, I can do nothing but hope for the Prefect's kindness. 5 8 Not long after these incidents, Wei Ying-wu took leave from the post of Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang and shut himself up i n the T'ung-te Temple east of Lo-yang. According to the rule promulgated on the nineteenth day,of the f i f t h month in the f i r s t year of the Pao-ying era (762), the term of an assistant subprefect was three years; however, in the case of no replacement, the appointment could be extended 56. C h u - n i a o j f ^ l , God of South, who metes out punishment i f propriety i s violated. See Ssu-ma Ch'ien, OP. c i t . , chiian 27, p.110. 57. Butting a fence i s an allusion from The Book of  Changes P ^ ] t A ram butts against the fence, i t i s neither able to retreat nor to advance. It means that one i s in a dilemma. See M Ta-chuang San-shih-ssu Chou-i Ku-ching Chin-chieh[llj jfo f& ^ jff|] • Commentary by Kao Heng^r^ . Hongkong t Chung-hua Shu-chii j£j ] » 1968 ed., chiian 3, p.119. 58. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.1-2. Except for the pre-face and li n e 1 of the poem, I follow Nielson*s translation, op. c i t . , p.24. 25 59 for another year. Therefore, we Know that Wei Ying-wu held the post no longer than four years. In the following poems he claims sickness as an excuse for secluding himself i n T'ung-te Temple. As a matter of fact, the unfortunate incident concerning the soldiers might be the real cause. The two poems below were written after his retirement from the post of Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang. Taking Leave from the Lo-yang Assistant Subprefectural Office A square hole cannot take a round peg, A straight stick cannot be made into a wheel. Upon examination, a l l matter has i t s particular use. Going contrary to true nature begets suffering. Bowing and scraping are not for me. I drink water but am not destitute. Taking leave, I rest in the empty room, To recuperate, I cut myself off from the clamor and dust. Fish instinctively swim in schools, Even wild birds have their flock. My house and yard are at Tu-ling, For years and years my heart has longed for them. 59. See Wang P*n, op. c i t . , ch\ian 69, p.1222. 26 Mount Sung stands high under clear skies, Following winter snows, spring arrives along the Yellow and Lo Rivers. The lofty trees do not yet have flowers. Everyday the grass becomes greener. Why should I keepon with my writing ? I should weed in the East Fields. Sent to the O f f i c i a l of Ho-nan East Bureau of Military Affairs While Convalescing at T*ung-te Temple I am resting leisurely here towards the east of the c i t y , Where i n the cold the shuang t r e e s 6 1 are deep green. A b r i l l i a n t moon d r i f t s over the spacious courtyard. A lig h t coat of frost covers the lofty pavilion. 60. " East Fields " i s an allusion referred to the hermit Wang Chi \\. ffy ] who called himself ' Master of East Fields • [Tung-kao Tzu jjtjj^jf] • S e e Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chuan 196, p.459. The poem see CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, pp. 1-2. The translation except lines 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, i s Nielson*s, op. c i t . , pp.71-72. 61. Shuang tree $J[] , generally known as'p*o-lo' r [Jf,^] . See Fa Ytm[##] . Fan-i Minq-i Chi [ff j!f ^  JV flj -Ho-fei K'uai-shih Tai-keng Ts*ao-t'ang [fcf&jfa W #<f J . 1878 [ ^ ^ ( ^ ^ - J e d . , chuan 7, pp.23-24. r 27 I have shut myself up here not to nurture my original nature* But* because of sickness, I cannot come to your party, There are certainly other people here, But I think of you through the changing years. I vas truly embarrassed to be above you in offi c e , When confronted with your talent my past performance shames me. I had not thought that day and night Would follow one after another- without"seeing you. I sent this verse to ask about you, Your reply w i l l certainly be f l o r i d exquisiteness. (d) The Director of the Department of Merits and Subprefect After his retirement from the post of Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang, presumably, Wei Ying-wu was out of office for quite a long time. Then he was assigned as a director in the Department 62. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, P.5. Except for the t i t l e and lines 2 and 5, the translation follows Nielson, op. c i t . , p p i* 25-26. 28 C I of Merits i n Ching-chao Superior Prefecture, which controlled twenty-three subprefectures around the area 64 of the Capital Ch'ang-an. A director in the Department of Merits in Ching-chao Superior Prefecture belonged to the lower division of the principal class in the seventh degree, a higher rank than Wei*s previous position as an Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang. As a director in the Department of Merits i n Ching-chao Superior Prefecture, he sometimes needed to go out to inspect the subprefectures which were under the jurisdiction of the Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. For example, in later years, when he arrived back in Fu-p fing Subprefecture after being out offic e , he recalled his earlier experiences in the following linest " In earlier days, when I worked i n a government offi c e , I had always 63. Director i n the Department of Merits [Kung-ts*ao (ts'an-chun-shih) ^ ^ C^^i J>J ] • The evidence that Wei took this post i s to be found in the commentaries on his two poems with t i t l e s Reply to Graduate L i Feng " [ ^ j | i iff <U and Reply to Liu, the Judicial Officer "[^jjf'J $3 • S e e C T S 3/7/ Wei Ying-wu 5, p.4. In the interpretation of Hsi-ts*ao[t^? ^ ] , I follow Wan Man who takes i t as identical to Fa-ts #ao[^ , the Judicial Officer. See Wan Man[Jj| ^ ] , M Wei Ying-wu Chuan "tfrjfai&lfy] i n Kuo-wen Yueh-k»an[i|j £ j j ^J ] , 60. Shanghai! Kuo-wen Yueh-k»an-s.she[f$j ^j^j ^.j 1947, p.20. 64. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chlian 1, pp.1-2. 65. A director in the Department of Merits, lower division of the principal class in the seventh degree K <fa ^ J . See L i Lung-chl, op. c i t . , chlian 30, p.502. 29 66 to rush about inspecting the subordinate towns" . At one time, when he went out to investigate the damage caused by a flood i n Yun-yang Subpref ecture. He Wrote t Early in the morning, I start on ajourney, on order from the Superior Prefecture, I have no time to rest though the weather i s hot. Since I have to go to Ytin-yang, a hundred l i away, To make inquiries about the inhabitants suffering from the flood. 6 7 ] • • • The flood referred to was presumably the one which occurred in the twelfth year of the T a - l i era ( 777). In the tenth month of that year, L i Kan, who was the Prefect off Ching-chao Superior Prefecture [Ching-chao Yin v f y ^ ^ J , made a report to the emperor and stated that the flood had damaged thirty-one thousand eh^ing^Jj ] of agriculture l a n d . 6 8 ( 66. " Deep Emotions on Going to Fu-p•ing CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, P. 6. Fu-p»ing[<j^ was a subpref ecture one hundred, and f i f t y l i northeast of"Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chuan 1, P.7. 1 67. See " Sent to the O f f i c i a l s in the Office of the Superior Prefecture on Envoy to Ytin-yang." CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, P.5. Yffh-yang['|? $|] was one hundred and twenty l i northeast of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. See L i Chi-fu, op.cit., chuan 1, P.8. 68. Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chtian 11, P.39. 30 From the following poems of Wei Ying-wu, we know that go L i Kan, Duke Shou-ch'un, was Wei Ying-wu's superior during the time Wei served as a director in the Department of Merits in Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. Written on the Journey Back from Autumn . Country Fair, Respectfully Submitted to L i , Duke Shou-ch'un Your subordinate came from an ordinary family, Obeying the order* X administer the Imperial Precincts. Your Excellency, you bend your discerning intelligence, And recommend my goodness while forgetting my defects.... Early i n the morning, when the door of your office was opened, 70 I was able to pay my respects to you. Arriving the Former Residence of Duke Shou-ch'un in K'ai-hua L i 7 1 Do you know the o f f i c i a l who once served in your 69. L i Kan ^ l ^ - ] , Duke Shou-ch'un j f ^ l - S e e Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 145, p.369. 70. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.8. 71. K'ai-hua Li[|^j jfo (f ]was located directly south of the Imperial City i n Ch'ang-an. See Take© Hiraoka[>r » " One, "ch'ang-an City " - (f ,/|Uh^ » Ch'ang-an and Lo-yang{J^J^~ fc t ^ - f ^ l ( m a P s ) • KyototJimbunkagaku Kenkyusho, Kyoto University, 1956 ed. 31 office* Nov walking to and fro in your former residence ? When I mount your stairs* I s t i l l feel my former respect for you* When I gaze at your divine tablet* my tears f a l l down in my lingering sorrow. The abandoned well i s covered by grass* The shaded windows are covered by moss. The carriages have disappeared from your door* 72 Nothing looks the same as the last time I came. The f i r s t poem was written when L i Kan was s t i l l the Prefect of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture; and the second one was written after L i Kan had been put to death. L i Kan had served as the Prefect of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture twice. His f i r s t appointment began from the f i r s t year of the Yung-t'ai era (765), and probably ended before the post was taken by L i Mienj^ in the fourth month 73 of the second year of the T a - l i era (767). As Wei Ying-wu took up the post as an Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang in the Yung-t'ai e r a , 7 4 he would not have been able to serve in Ching-chao Superior Prefecture when L i Kan took his f i r s t appointment as prefect there. L i Kan's second appointment as the Prefect of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture was i n the period from the ninth year 72. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, p.IX. 73. See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chiian 11, pp.36-37 74. See part (c) in this chapter. 32 of the T a - l i era (774) to the fourteenth year of the same era (779 )j then, the post was taken by Yen Ying[/|f^ fj£] . 7 5 Certainly, Wei Ying-wu's service as a Director i n the Department of Merits occurred during L i Kan's second appointment as the Prefect of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. From the poem quoted above which was written when he went to investigate the damage caused by flooding in Yiin-yang, and the report of L i Kan after the flood, we know that Wei Ying-wu took up his post as a Director in the Department of Merits in Ching-chao Superior Prefecture not later than the twelfth year of the T a - l i era (777). Obviously, Thomas Nielson and Shen Tso-che are mistaken i n regarding the date that Wei Ying-wu served as a Director in the Department of Merits as earlier than his 76 appointment as an Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yangi Not very long after he took up the post as a Director of the Department of Merits, he was simultaneously appointed Subprefect of Kao-ling, which was located eighty l i northeast 77 of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. The following poem was written at the time when he was ready to go to take up this concurrent position. 75. See Liu Hs\i, op. c i t . , chuan 11, pp.38 and 40. 76. See Nielson, op. c i t . , p.22 and Shen Tso-che, op. c i t . , p.68. 77. K a o - l i n g f ^ J , under the jurisdiction of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chlian 2, p.2. 33 Parting from the Venerable Tzu-hsi at 78 T'ien-ch'ang Mountain Temple Taking this position i s contrary to my doltish nature, But how much worse i t i s to be separated from a friend ! Resignedly, climbing up to this monastery, I take you by the hand, cherishing this morning. High and open, beyond the dust of the earth, We wander light heartedly, cleansing our s p i r i t s . The green mountain faces the fragrant garden, Rows of trees surround the ferry-crossing. Horses and carriages never cease coming and going. This traveler i s weary of the journey's grime. I should go down the road now, But I halt here, how can I express my feelings ? I w i l l hold fast to pure intentions, With this to encourage and comfort you who are 79 close to my heart. 78. The Commentary beneath the t i t l e states/ •„• The writer was appointed as a Director of the Department of Merits i n Ching-chao Superior Prefecture, simultaneously being the Subprefect of Kao-ling.The poem was written to Lu K'ang [J^ /|(j the Director of the Department of AgriculturefT'ien-ts'ao (ts• an-chun shih) c# $ ^ jb] and Han Chih£f|j ^ ] , the Director of the Departmentof Finance [Hu-ts'aoits'an-ichun-shih^ ( f % | ) ] • •• : •; 79. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, P.6. Except for the t i t l e and lines 7,8, 13.and 14,the translation i s Nielson*s, bp.cit.. P. 22. 34 When Wei Ying-wu arrived in Kao-ling, he had many d i f f i c u l t i e s to cope with. There was no time even to read a book. Under such circumstances, once again> he thought about ret i r i n g from office. An Expression of My Feelings i n Kao-ling, Sent to Lu, the Chief Clerk of San-yuan Being just and upright, I am unlikely to get a promotion, I am merely able to hold this lowly position. Opening a book, I never have time to read i t , Because I am swamped in legal cases and correspondence. Wars and years of famine follow one on the other, The problems of forced labour and taxes leave me without a moment's leisure. If I stick too fast to the rules, the people's' condition w i l l be heart-rending. If I am too lenient, I w i l l get myself into trouble. Day and 7nightr I plan to beat a retreat$ When I go outside, I always gaze at the mountains of home. 80. Lu, the Chief Clerk[Lu Shao-fu^tj/ 1^"]. Shao--fu i s a different name given to Hsien-wei[i||,/l<[] . See Lu Fei-kuei, op. c i t . , P.9S4. San-yiian [5. if J Subpref ecture was under the. jurisdiction of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture and one hundred and ten l i northeast of i t . See l i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chuan 1, P. 6. 35 If you feel so too, 81 We had better go back hand in hand. Nevertheless, he vas transferred to Hu Subprefecture 82 to be the Subprefect there before he retired. In the fourth year of the T a - l i era (779), Wei 83 Ying-wu was transferred to Li-yang from Hu to take the post of Subprefect of Li-yang. According to the commentary on the following poem, he resigned from the post on ground of il l n e s s . Then, he went to l i v e in Shan-fu Temple on the bank of the OA Feng River. At that time he was about forty-three years old. 81. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, P.l. 82. Hu Subpref ecture ['^ji ] was under the jurisdiction of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture and located sixty-five l i southwest of i t . See L i Chi-fu op. c i t . , chuan 2, P.4. The Subprefect of Hu belonged to the upper division of the principal class in the sixth degree £ £ < 7 {& X]. See L i Lung-chi op. c i t . , chuan 30, P.515. 83. Li-yang[^ , was under the jurisdiction of Ching-chao Superior Prefecture and located one hundred l i northeast of i t . See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 2, P.2. Wan Man[J^||] and Lo Lien-t'ien regard Li-yang as belonging to Hua Prefecture [ j^ KJ] . However, i t was not, u n t i l the 3rd year of the T•ien-yu era (906) that Li-yang was assigned to Hua Prefecture from Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. See Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 37, P.93, and also Wan Man, op.cit., P.26; Lo Lien-t»ien, op. c i t . , P.30. 84. Feng R i v e r [ ^ 9jc] , a tributary of Wei River [ f | jjcj. It was twenty-eight l i east of Hu. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 2, P.4. 36 After Resigning as Subprefect of Li-yang and Returning to the Western Suburbs to Live I Sent This Poem to My Friend upon Parting Since youth I have served in the prefectures and subprefectures, And have wasted my time writing government documents. My ambition to soar through the clouds has come to naught, For how can I acquire the wings of f l i g h t ? Fortunately i t i s now a time of bri l l i a n c e and prosperity, When everything i s allowed to grow and develop; But I am alone here, a f f l i c t e d with sickness. oe Worthless, I resigned from this post. The events of the world move steadily on. I long to get rest i n the suburban gardens. We tarried in happiness, Your high s p i r i t s knew no bounds. We drank cup after cup u n t i l suddenly the time had gone, Your elevating discussions were truly profound. 85. The interlinear commentary here states," On the twenty-third day of the sixth month in the fourth year of the T a - l i era, after having moved from the of f i c e of Hu Subprefecture to be the Subprefect of Li-yang, the writer resigned from the post and returned to l i v e in Shan-fu Temple because of sickness. This poem was written on the twentieth day of the seventh month." 37 You s t r o l l on the Imperial Palace grounds, And enjoy the breeze beside those select trees; Morning, I ascend the Western Suburb roads, Where the fiel d s are d i s t i n c t l y divided by different types of millet. I am content as were men in the age of T'ao-t'ang, As I put forth my feeble a b i l i t y to labour. I stand here thinking of you a l l arrayed on the royal steps; You i n the service, I in retirement, we both are 87 content. (e) From the Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Judiciary Control to the Prefect of Su Prefecture In less than two years after Wei Ying-wu resigned from office and lived quietly i n Shan-fu Temple, he was reappointed as the Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of 86. T'ao-t'ang (Shih)[^;|cAjj] i s another name for Emperor Yao [^] . In Chinese tradition, i t i s believed that there was a golden age of Chinese history during Emperor Yao's period, when, in the words of an ancient rhyme traditionally associated with his reign, • Everybody goes out to work when the sun rises, And gets rest when the sun has set."[ Q $ tyl^ , Q Tv.^?/|.]. F o r t h e biography of Emperor Yao, see Ssu-ma Ch'ien, op. c i t . , chuan 1, pp.4-5. 87. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, p.8. Except for lines 8, 10, 18 and footnotes, the translation i s Nielson*s, op. c i t . , pp.27-28. 38 Judiciary Control in the Department of State Affairs in the fourth month of the second year of the Chien-chung era (781). The Bureau of Judiciary Control was a subdivision of the Ministry of Justice. Although the rank of his post was no higher than upper division of the deputy class in the sixth 88 degree , Wei Ying-wu seemed very happy because i n this post he was a directly attached to the Central Government in the capital. He wrote the following poem upon leaving Shan-fu Temple to take up this new appointments Leaving the Shan-fu Temple to Take Office 89 as Shang-shu-lang Being plain and unadorned X am not a useful instrument) I have thrown myself in with the grass and trees. I:-stroll leisurely around the temple grounds. And drink wine to my heart's content. I comb my hair but once in several days, And am often reluctant to pore over books. On the festivals, I with my elderly friends, 88.. Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Judiciary Control in the Department of State Affairs [shang-shu Pi-pu Yiian-wai-lang Jr^Jp $ 4 JM» upper division of the deputy class in the sixth degree [ f ^ ^ A X ] . See L i Lung-chi op. c i t . , chiian 6, P.I14. 89. Commentary s On the nineteenth day, fourth month, second year of the Chien-chung era (781), the Writer who was -the the former Subprefect of Li-yang, took office as Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Judiciary Control in the Department of State Affairs. 39 Wander at w i l l enjoying the mountains and rivers. In these great times o f f i c i a l s are being selected. And handsome salaries come out of the court. My appointment arrived unexpectedly, Whereupon, I don the robes of office, I am ashamed to take this secretarial office, . And have no right to receive the rank. My o f f i c i a l hat tassels swing as I greet to v i s i t o r s , And my light-wheeled carriage soars in the wind. As I prepare to leave my loved ones, A tremendous feeling for the bank of Vest Stream sweeps over me. The distant peaks reflect brightly in the t w i l i t river, And after the warm r a i n f a l l , a blanket of green spreads forth. A swift wind blows down the country road, I look back, but I can stay no longer. But tomorrow morning, as I descend the misty pavilion, I w i l l surely think of the white clouds lying in 90 the quiet valley. This appointment was very short. In the next year 9o. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, pp.8-9. Except for lines 2, 15, 16, 18, 19, 21 and 24, the translation i s Nielson*s, op. c i t . , pp.30-31. 40 (782), Wei Ying-wu was assigned as the Prefect of Ch'u Prefecture. Ch'u Prefecture was a lower class prefecture in the south; although the rank of this post was lower division of the principal class in the fourth degree, 9 2 a higher rank than his former post, the appointment presumably upset him. So he wrotei ... Just as I concluded serving at the two superior 93 prefectures. I was undeservedly recommended to the Department of State Affairs. Being untalented I was naturally not received, But was sent out to the provinces to care for 94 those who are lonely and desolate. ... On arriving in Ch'u Prefecture, he wrote a poem to his younger brothers*. 91. Ch'u Prefecture was a lower class Prefecture [ "T" vj*»» ] . See Liu Hsu, op. Cit. chiian 40, P.167. 92. A prefect of lower class prefecture, lower division of the principal class i n the fourth degree [j£ L<0 $i ^\J. See L i Lung-chi, op. c i t . , chiian 30, P.510. 93. Two superior prefectures are referred to Ho-nan and Ching-chao. Wei Ying-wu had served as an Assistant Subprefect in Ho-nan and Director of the Department of Merits etc. in Ching-chao. 94. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, P.14, titled"Meeting Colonel Yang", Except for the t i t l e , line 22 and the last l i n e , the translation i s Nielson»s op. c i t . , P.33. 41 Sent to My Younger Brothers on Hearing the Chirp of the Cicada in the Suburban Gardens Last year after I parted from you i n the suburban gardens, I heard the cicada's chirp at the Department of State Affairs, 95 This year when I sleep here in Nan-chiao, I hear the chirp of cicada again, but the way back i s so far away. The chirp rises from the valley at evening, And the melancholy spreads widely in the autumn atmosphere. I enclose this to describe what is going on here— My heart i s s t i l l disquieted. 9 6 In the fourth year of the Chien-chung era (783), one year after Wei Ying-wu arrived Ch'u Prefecture, the soldiers of Ching Prefecture and Yuan Prefecture received orders from Emperor Te-tsung to fight against the insurgent L i Hsi-lieh ^C] • T n e v led by the Military Governor of Ching-yuan, Yao Ling-yen^^V^^] .When they arrived Ch'ang-an, the government supplied them with bad food, and the soldiers revolted. In the tenth month of that year. Emperor Te-tsung fled Feng-t'ien, one hundred and sixty l i northwest of 95. Nan-chiao [ j ^ ^ ] , the former name of Ch'u Prefecture. See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chuan 40, p.167. 96. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.2. 42 97 Ching-chao Superior Prefecture, for refuge. Not Knowing the fate of the emperor and his own relatives, Wei Ying-wu immediately sent a messenger to make inquiries. The messenger returned in the f i f t h month of the following year, thereupon, Wei Ying-wu wrote a poem to his younger brothers to describe his feelings upon this event. 98 To My Younger Brothers Late in the year, troops at the capital revolted, I secretly sent a letter inquiring about your fate. Unexpectedly a return letter dropped from the heavens, I only know that tears are streaming down a l l 99 our cheeks. Soon after that, Wei Ying-wu was released from Prefect of Ch'u Prefecture. During this period of leisure, he wrotet • • • At Nan-yen Temple, I li s t e n to the soughing of 97. Feng-t'ien[V|^^l , see L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 1, p. 7. 98. Commentaryt " On the third day, tenth month, fourth year of the Chien-chung era, when the troops revolted at the capital, the writer dispatched a messenger from Ch'u Prefecture to make inquiries secretly. This poem was written the following year when the messenger returned on the ninth day, f i f t h month of the Hsing-yuan era (784).** 99. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.6. The t i t l e and line 1 are reproduced from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.36. 43 pines; At West Stream spring I view the moon. Being unskilled in government, .1 should be rebuffed, vhat hope can there be promotion ? Eventually, I w i l l put my original baggage in order, And return home to plow the f i e l d s of T u - l i n g . 1 0 0 However, before Wei Ying-wu put his original baggage in order and returned home to plow the fields of Tu-ling, he was assigned as Prefect of Chiang Prefecture. In spite of the fact that Chiang Prefecture was even further south than Ch*u Prefecture along the Yang-tzu River, i t was a middle class prefecture. 1 0 1 The rank of i t s prefect was upper division of 102 the principal class in the fourth degree, a b i t higher than Prefect of Ch»u Prefecture was. When Wei Ying-wu was in Chiang Prefecture, he wrotet 100. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, pp.8-9, t i t l e d " Sent to My Younger Brothers Tuan, Wu and Others at the Capital on This New Year»s Day." Except for lines 1 and 4 of the excerpt above, the translation i s quoted from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.37. 101. Chiang Prefecture, middle class prefecture [ j . See Liu Hsii, op. c i t . , chiian 40, p.170. ' 102. The prefect of middle class prefecture, upper division of the principal class in the fourth degree [ jf (4J Jfa J . See L i Lung-chi, op. c i t . , chiian 30, p.509. 44 Sent from the Prefectural Pavilion to My Younger Brothers at the Capital and My Juniors at Huai-nan 103 No sooner was I released from the Yung-yang government* Than I was resting at Hsun-yang Pavilion. Flurries of cold rain blow around the high r a i l i n g s . The river water presses upon the high battlements. Listening to the wild goose this night* I remember anew the autumn we parted. I can but f i l l the cup with wine* 105 To repress this intense grief. When the term of office as the Prefect of Chiang Prefecture expired* Wei Ying-wu was appointed as F i r s t Secretary of the Left Bureau in the Department of State Affairs at the 103. Yung-yang[7jc $|]was the name given to Ch»u Prefecture in the f i r s t year of the T'ien-pao era (742). It was renamed Ch»u Prefecture in the f i r s t year of the Ch'ien-yifan era (758). See Liu HsU, op., c i t . , chuan2r40t,-p.167. 104. Hsun-yang[Y|| f$j^ ] was the name given to Chiang Prefecture in the f i r s t year of the T*ien-pao era. It was renamed Chiang Prefecture in the f i r s t year of the Ch^ien-yiian era. See footnote 103, T'ang Shu, chiian 40, P. 170. 105. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, P.9. Except for the t i t l e and lines 3 and 4, the translation i s Nielson*s op. c i t . , P. 38. 45 capital with the rank of upper division of the deputy class i n the f i f t h degree. In this post, again, he was able to serve i n the capital. Therefore, when he later became the Prefect of Su Prefecture, he wrote, " Having twice served at the Department of State Affairs, I spent about ten years along 107 the Yang-tzu River and the sea-coast." Wei Ying-wu's appointment as the F i r s t Secretary of the Left Bureau was rather short. One year later, he was appointed as Prefect of Su Prefecture with the rank of deputy class i n the third degree because Su Prefecture was an upper 108 class prefecture. Here are four lines abstracted from his one poem concerning his transfer. " Last year while serving in Chiu-Chiang, I was summoned to the capital by his majesty? " " Today serving at Wu, my thoughts go on and on 106. F i r s t Secretary of the Left Bureau [ j ^ jfj (Jflc^ J, upper division of the deputy class in the f i f t h degree[ $^Ji j • See L i Lung-chi op. c i t . , chiian 1, P. 14. 107. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, P.12, t i t l e d " Sent to the Chief Clerk of Yiin-yang, Chou J u - l i , on His Return to the Capital. " Wei Ying-wu served at the Department of State Affairs twicet f i r s t time as the Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Judiciary Control and second time as the F i r s t Secretary of the Left Bureau. His service in places near to the Yang-tzu River and the sea began i n 782 as the Prefect of Ch'u Prefecture. 108. Su Prefecture, upper class prefecture Til '^ f 1 • See Liu Hsii, op. c i t . , chiian 40, p. 168. The prefect of upper class prefecture, deputy class i n the third degree ^ ] • See L i Lung-chi, op. c i t . , chiian 30, p.508. 46 109 finding no peace," Wei Ying-wu does not mention in which year he took up the post as the Prefect of Su Prefecture. The Topography  of Ku-su only states that Wei Ying-wu's appointment was early in the Chen-yuan era. 1 1** But according to the statement of the other famous T'ang poet Po Chii-i, who went to take up the same post in Su Prefecture and on the twentieth day in the seventh month of the f i r s t year of the Pao-li era (825), had engraved on stone a poem of Wei Ying-wu t i t l e d " Feasting with Several Scholars in the Prefectural Residence During a Rainy Day ", Wei Ying-wu was the Prefect of Su Prefecture i l l thirty-seven years earlier than Po Chii-i was. This means Wei was serving i n Su during the fourth year of the Chen-yuan era (788). 109. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.12, t i t l e d " Replying to a Poem Written by L i Shih-sun of Ho-nan about Mount Hsiang Temple ".Except for line 2, the translation i s Nielsen's, op. c i t . , pp.39-40. Chiu-chiang[<JU >2- J was the name given to Chiang Prefecture in the Sui dynasty and Wu[Jz]was the name given to Su Prefecture in the Sui dynasty and in the f i r s t year of the T'ien-pao era (742) i n the T'ang dynasty. Wu was renamed Su Prefecture i n the f i r s t year of the Ch'ien-yuan era (758). See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chiian 40, pp., 168 and 170. ^ ,,r , , 110. See Wu K'uanflt 1^3 and others, Ku-su Chih [4j? f^- f ^ l • Taipei t Taiwan Hsiieh-sheng Shu-chii }^ 'I 4^ )1» 1965 ed., chuan 2, p.27. 111. See Po Chu-i[<^$\|J] , " Wu-chiin Shih Shih-chi" [Jk # 4 ' P o ' s h i h Ch'anq-ch'inq Chi [{Q l\ > £ j ^ ] . chiian 59, p.326 in Ssu-pu Ts'unq-k'an 1stsex.* Shanghait Commercial Press, 1936 ed. Wei's poem see CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1» p.7. 47 The T'ang Shu states that in the seventh month of the fourth year of the Chen-yuan era, Sun Sheng£ ^  jfj\] , the Prefect of Su Prefecture was transferred to take a 112 new appointment in Kuei Prefecture. It seems that Wei Ying-wu was probably the prefect who went to replace Sun Sheng as the Prefect of Su Prefecture at that time. After Wei Ying-wu arrived Su Prefecture, the Prefect of Hsin Prefecture Liu T'ai-chen saw Wei Ying-wu*s poem ( the one which was engraved on the stone by Po Chu-i) and he wrote a poem together with a letter to Wei Ying-wu and praising his poem highly, also asking Wei Ying-wu to reply 113 to him with a poem. Wei Ying-wu did return him a poem which i s found in chuan 5 of his c o l l e c t i o n . 1 1 4 Liu T'ai-chen was degraded from the Vice-president of the Ministry of Rites to the Prefect of Hsin Prefecture i n the third month of the f i f t h year of the Chen-yuan era 115 (789) and he died there before long. The evidence above 112. See Liu Hsu, op.cit., chiian 13, P.45. 113. The Letter to Wei Ying-wu 4$ ff] by Liu T'ai-chenpf'j J^JL] . See Liu T'ai-chen in Ch'in-ting Ch'iian T'ang W e n j f f i • Taipeii Ch'i-wen Ch'u-pan-she $k$Q» l g61 ed., chiian 395, P.5078, and Liu's poem 'ang Ts'ung-shu i^j^/if 114. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, P.IO, t i t l e d "Return to Prefect Liu" • Commentary! " Liu T'ai-chen." 115.See Liu Hsia,op.cit., chiian 13,P.45 and chiian 137, P.395.Vice-president of the Ministry of Rites[Li-pu Shih-lang 48 shows that Wei Ying-wu began to take up the post as the Prefect of Su Prefecture after Sun Sheng in 788. At the time he was fifty-two years old. Therefore, we know that Shen Tso-che, who fixes the date Wei Ying-wu went to take up the post i n the second year of the Chen-yuan era (786) 117 and Thomas Nielson who opts for i n 787 are, in fact, both wrong. Probably, Wei Ying-wu*s appointment as Prefect of Su Prefecture did not last very long, as in the second month of the eight year of the Chen-yuan era (792), a later Prefect of Su Prefecture, Ch*i K'ang [-^Mitl] , had already r 118 ended his term and been transferred to T*an Prefecture. Ch'i K'ang must be the one who went to replace Wei Ying-wu as Prefect of Su Prefecture. Although there i s no record of the date Wei l e f t the offi c e , according to a rule promulgated in the seventh month of the f i r s t year of the Kuang-te era '" •••119'" (763), the term for each prefect was three years. There-fore, their possible terms might be as below t Wei Ying-wu 788, 789, 790 A.D. Ch'i K'ang 790* 791, 792 A.D. 116. Shen Tso-che, op.cit. P. 68. Toyoda Yuzurup^ .Li regards i t as in the second year of the Chen-yuan era (786) too. See Toyoda Yuzuru, " I Soshu No Shi " ^ ] in Kangakkai Zasshi V . l , 6(3), 1938, P.50. TOkyoi Teikoku Daigaku. 117. Nielson, op. c i t . , P.38. 118.See Liu Hsii, op. c i t . , chuan 13, P.46. 119. See Liu Hsii, op.cit., chiian 11, P.35. 49 After Wei Ying-wu was released as Prefect, he moved with his family to the Yung-ting Temple i n Su Prefecture,where he rented two "ch* ing *•[<.'|j ] of land nearby to cultivate. 120 Dwelling in the Yung-ting Temple Being a clumsy administrator,I am happy to be out of offi c e , I leisurely begin to look after my livelihood. My family being poor, we cannot leave, Yet I dream of being at the capital. During cold months I have been in this mountain. temple, Now the farmers at work remind me I am l i v i n g abroad. For the time being I rent two ch'ing of land, And exhort my juniors to plough. I am losing my sight so discontinue writing; This leisure allows me to be well versed in true nature. Being beyond the reach of man, 121 How can I be entangled by right and wrong ? The last available record of Wei Ying-wu's activity i s incorporated in his poem to Ling-hu Huan to comfort him upon his third degradation and departure to take up the post 120. Commentaryi " The Yung-ting Temple i s in Su." 121. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, pp.4-5. Lines 7, 8; and 10 include revisions of Nielson version, op. c i t . , pp.42-43. 50 of Assistant O f f i c e r 1 2 2 in Ch'ii Prefecture [ffff t ' j l . That poem was his response to the verse sent to Wei Ying-wu by 123 Ling-hu Huan while on his way to Ch'ii Prefecture. Ling-hu Huan stayed in Ch'u Prefecture for ten years. He was order to return to the capital when Emperor Shun-tsung came to the throne in 805. Therefore, we know that the time he went to Ch'ii Prefecture was around 795i at that point, Wei Ying-wu was fifty-nine years old. He probably died some years after that. The man who was recommended by Liu Yii-hsi to replace him as Prefect of Su Prefecture in the sixth year of the T'ai-he era (832) was also called Wei Ying-wu, but he was another Wei Ying-wu and not the famous poet who concerns us here. This has already been proved by many scholars (Lo Lien-t'ien amasses a l l the evidence in his " Wei Ying-wu Shih-chi Hsi-nien"). Hence, i t is not necessary to repeat the argument here. In order to make this biography simpler and clearer, the following chart illustrates the government posts held by Wei Ying-wu. 122. Assistant Officer[Pieh-chia oj ^ ] . The biography of Ling-hu Huan see Ou-yang Hsiu, op. c i t . , chiian 102, pp.292-293. 123. The poem Wei Ying-wu sent to Ling-hu Huan see CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.10, and Ling-hu Huan's poem he sent to Wei Ying-wu i s found i n Lu Wen-ch'ao, op. c i t . , p.10. 124. See Lo Lien-t'ien, op. c i t . , pp.57-61. 51 Wei Ying-wu's Curriculum Vitae (1) Year Age Location Position Rank 737 1 Tu-ling 751-756 15-20 Ch*ang-an Palace Guard ^S^udent Sot T'ai-/ / hsiieh 763-765 27-29 Lo-yang Assistant Subprefect Upper Division of the Deputy Class in the 7th Degree 774-777 38-41 Ch'ang-an Director of the Department of Merits Lower Division of the Principal Class in the 7th Degree 778 42 Ch'ang- / an / /Kao-ling Director / of the / Depart- / ment of / / Sub-Merits / f e c t / of / Kao-ling Lower Division / of the Prin- / cipal Class / in the 7th / Degree ^ p p e r ^Division / o f the /Principal / C l a s s ; i n the / 6th Degree 779 43 Hu Subprefect Upper Division of the Principal Class in the 6th"Degree'' -52 Wei Ying-wu*s Curriculum Vitae (2) 781-782 45-46 Ch'ang-an Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Judiciary Control Upper Division of the Deputy Class in the 6th Degree 782-784 46-48 Ch»u Prefecture Prefect Lower Division of the Principal Class in the 4th Degree 785-787 49-51 Chiang Prefecture Prefect Upper Division of the Principal Class in the 4th Degree 787-788 51-52 Ch*ang-an Fi r s t Secretary of the Left Bureau Upper Division of the Deputy Class in the 5th Degree 788-790 52-54 Su Prefecture Prefect Deputy Class in the 3rd Degree 790- 54- Su Prefecture Retired 53 The Locations of Wei Ying-wu's Government Service and Residence 300 600 900 km It20,000,000 54 (f) Wei Ying-wu*s family In the "Tsai-hsiang Shih-hsi piab" » i t is recorded 125 that Wei Ying-wu had two sons, Ch'ing-fu and Hou-fus but there i s no mention about other members of his family. From his nineteen mournful poems 6n the death of his 1 ?6 wife, we know that Wei Ying-wu and his wife were an 127 affectionate couple. From his poem t i t l e d " Mourn for the Dead" among those nineteen poems, we know that his wife died after they had been married for twenty years. Another poem i n the, same group with the t i t l e 1 " Arriving at the Old Residence in 128 Chao-kuo-li " mentions that he came to pick up the things which his wife l e f t i n the eastern room of their house in Chao-kuo-li. It seems that the death Of his wife occurred during their residence in Chao-kuo-li when Wei Ying-wu was around forty years old and was the Director in the Department of Merits in Ching-chao Superior Prefecture. Therefore. Wei Ying-wu appears to have been married when he was around twenty years old. Not less than ten years after the death of his wife, Wei Ying-wu married again when he was the Prefect of Su Prefecture. The evidence comes from the following poems 125. cf . P.2. 126. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, pp.6-10. 127. " Mourn for the D e a d " ^ ^ ] . See CTS1 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, P.6. 128. " Arriving the Old Residence i n Chao-kuo-li ".See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, P. 8. Chao-kuo-li[$$ ||| tj?]was located southeast of Imperial City. See Takeo Hiraoka, op. c i t . , Hap one of Ch*ang-an cit y . 55 129 Seeing Ch'in Hsi off to Juen Prefecture Since I have been married recently, I plucked out my white whiskers, I always bring my old book along in my blue shirt. Moreover, I would l i k e to accompany you to the Hu-ch'iu Temple. 1 3 0 Gazing after your setting s a i l , I forget what i t 131 means to be prefect. As for his daughters, from a poem and i t s interlinear commentary which he wrote to one daughter on her marriage to a certain Yang, we know that Wei Ying-wu had at least two 132 daughters by his f i r s t wife. According to the Ch'uan T'ang Shih, there was a, dancing-girl, a daughter of Wei Ying-wu by his concubine, who met L i Ao, the Regional Supervisor [Kuan-ch'a Shih 'llfjf^ of Hu-nan in Ch'ang-sha. L i Ao f e l t pity for her position^and, as a result, he acted as a match-maker and arranged her marriage with an. o f f i c i a l . For this reason, she wrote a poem to thank 129. Ch'in Hsi[^Sjf,] was a hermit. His biography i s found in Ou-yang Hsiu, - Yin-i Lieh-chuan "[fJ^i^'J i^]* in Hsin T'ang Shu , op. c i t . , chiian 196, P.461. 130. Hu-ch'iu Temple ^ L ^ ] i s on Mount Hu-chsiu in Su Prefecture. See L i Hsien[^^]and others, Ta Ming I-t'ung  Chih ft 0$ - 4fa ilKao-hsiungt Pai-cheng Shu-chii fj?f £j\» 1965 ed., chiian 8, P. 666. 131. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, P.13. 132. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, P.10, t i t l e d -To My Daughter on Her Marriage to Yang"Q^ ^  b\Jc\. 56 133 L i Ao and L i Ao replied to her with a poem. L i Ao went to take up the post as the Prefect of T'an Prefecture and the Regional Supervisor of Hu-nan i n 134 the seventh year of the T'ai-he era (833). This was over forty years after Wei Ying-wu had retired from service. If the account given in the Ch'iian T'ang Shih i s to be believed, then we know that Wei Ying-wu had at least three daughters, in 135 contrast to Lo Lien-t'ien who maintains he had only one. 133 See *• Wu Che-chih Nu " \tl$^\, P.2, under the item " Chi Nu " [^^~J in Chiian T'ang Shih, Han 11, Ts'e 10, 1829 ed. 134. See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chiian 160, P.441. 135. See Lo Lien-t'ien, op. c i t . , pp. 7-8. CHAPTER II THE ARTISTIC ACHIEVEMENT AND STYLE OF WEI'S POETRY (a) Traditional Criticism of Wei's Poetry (i) The Elegant and Sa t i r i c a l Character of Wei's Verse The b r i l l i a n t achievement of Wei's poetry has been praised by many scholars. For example, Liu T'ai-chen, who was contemporary with Wei, once wrote a letter that praised Wei by saying that the style of his poetry could be compared to the famous poets Shen (Yuen), Hsieh (Ling-ytin), Ho (Hsun) and Liu (K'un) of the Six Dynasties. 1 Another contemporary, the Buddhist monk Chiao-jan, wrote a poem praising Wei as a poet who follows orthodox form. 2 Po Chu-i, who was about thirty-five years younger than Wei, was a great admirer of him. Once, Po Chii-i wrote a letter to his friend Yuan Chen that statesi 1. See Chapter I, p.47, footnote 113. 2. See Shih Chiao- jan[-rf "Wu-yen Ho Su-chou Wei Ying-wu Lang-chung»p.-f ^ j i j L H pin Chiao-jan  Chi [)^$( ij]t chiian 1, pp.3-4, Ssu-pu Ts'ung-k'an lstsev., op. c i t . 57 58 "... In recent years, Wei Ying-wu»s Ko-hsing j^ jj"] verse, in addition to showing b r i l l i a n t l i t e r a r y talent, also approaches the style of indirect satire [hsing-fengjtkfji^] • Moreover, his five-character verse i s far-reaching, elegant, leisurely and plain. He created his own style. Among the writers of today, 3 who can be compared to him ? ..." After examining the whole collection of Wei Ying-wu, we can agree with Po Chu-i*s appraisal of Wei's poetry. To support Po Chu-i's c r i t i c a l analysis, I present below several of Wei's poems as examples. From the following Ko-hsing Poem, we can see how he expresses this b r i l l i a n t talent* The Song of Listening to the Orioles It i s almost dawn in the east, the flowers are indistinct, The orioles singing to each other i s pleasing to my ear. Suddenly they go, suddenly they come, now near, now far. The sound at f i r s t heard from the southern path* now comes from the eastern c i t y . Speedily, i t seems as i f they are fluttering from the garden of Shang-lin to that of Hsia-yuan. 4 3. Po Chu-i, "Yii Yuan Chiu Shu wj^--^j /^j.^"] in Po-shih  Ch'ang-ch'ing Chi, op. c i t . , chiian 28, p.144. 4. Shang-lin [j: ^ a n d Hsia-yiian^. , both were famous Imperial gardens in Ch'ang-an. 59 They twitter softly and affectionately. As though to sing and yet not to sing, they are so seductive, Like a youngster of the Ch'iang starting to play 5 his flute, yet not in tune with melody. The former and the latter tones are not suited to each other, Like a g i r l of Ch'in learning to play the harpsichord, but whose fingers are s t i l l rough. After a l i t t l e while, the wind i s warmer, and the sun rises. The d r i f t i n g sound becomes as that of various kinds of birds \singing together. I wonder in whose family's a lazy wife has been disturbed from her unfinished dreams. And from what place a melancholy man i s thinking of his native home ? A shrike f l i e s over and c a l l s out a short note, A hoopoe glides down into the green mulberry-orchard, But neither of them can compare with the d r i f t i n g orioles singing in the flowers each day. The song can pacify the spring ardor of thousands of homes. There are times when the song seems to discontinue and become inaudible, 5. Ch'iang [ j ^ J, tribes in West China. Their flute was called Ch'iang-tij^ ^  ] and was well-knowiiall over China. 60 The orioles f l y away, and the flower stems are l e f t waving in the wind. They return to their perches in the green trees at the hour when a l l doors are locked. In spring, the water-clock run dry, they sing a song for the dawn.6 In this poem, Wei uses many repeated characters to portray the sweet song of the orioles. Although my translation is unable to convey the f u l l a r t i s t i c quality of i t , Wei's original poem i s very delicate and l i v e l y . As for the s a t i r i c a l poems, "The Song of the Wine-shop" can be taken as one example. The poem states that there was a wine-shop in Ch'ang-an which was so luxurious and attractive that a lot of people went to drink there. Since the shop became so famous, the owner eventually began to dilute the customers1' wine. By the end of this poem, Wei sighst • • • The drinkers only recognize the name but not the taste. At the humble shop where an excellent wine i s quietly produced the customers are few, But the r i c h pure flavor of that wine w i l l not change for a whole year. Even though the drunkards of Ch'ang-an are great in number, 6. CTS 3/7/Wii Ying-wu 10, p . l . 61 They pass i t by along the roadside without notice. 7 The. poem pours ridicule on those who give attention to a thing according to i t s reputation but ignore i t s reali t y . Other than "The Song of the Wine-shop", the "Three Miscellaneous Songs on Han Wu-ti% "Five Poems in Miscellaneous Form" and "Summer Ice Song" and so forth, also belong to this o category. With regard to Wei's achievement in the five-character verse form, Po Chii-i praises i t as far-reaching, elegant, leisurely and plain. Here i s an examples 9 To the Taoist of Ch'uan-chiao Mountain This morning the coldness of my study Suddenly brought to mind the mountain d r i f t e r . Gathering firewood along the stream bed, 7. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, p.2. 8. "Three Miscellaneous Songs on Han Wu-ti"[v'f[ ^  J?" Jfi .-ft^ - | ] s e e G T S 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 10, pp.3-4, "Five Poems in Miscellaneous Form" [J^ t|Nflf^ J>.^ ] s e e C T S 3 / 7 / W e i - Ying-wu 1, p.3-4, and the ••Summer Ice Song" see CTS 3/7/Wei  Ying-wu 10, p.4. " '9. Ch'iian-chiao [^$;l]was:a subprefecture under the jurisdiction of Ch'u Prefecture. See Liu Hsii, op. c i t . , chiian 40, p.167. 62 Then returning to boil white stones. 1 0 I thought to bring a gourd of vine, As comfort during evening vind and rain. But fallen leaves f i l l the empty mountain; Where could I find your footsteps? 1 1 Hung Mai, a scholar in the Sung dynasty, praises this poem by sayings It is so subtle and far-reaching, certainly, i t i s beyond praise. As for the last two lines, they cannot be approached merely by verbal explanation or 12 . exhaustive ithinking. If we take into account a r t i s t i c achievement alone, the excellence of this poem forces us to confess that i t reaches an incomparable degree of elegance. Although the language that Wei uses i s not so flowery but actually rather 10. An immortal who boiled white stones as his diet and lived in Mount White Stone was called Mr. White Stone [ix? fa '£]• T n i s allusion see Ko Hung[j| )j$r] , "Shen-hsien Chuan" \J^\h\^~\ in Wei Chin Hsiao-shuo Ta-kuan [ l l f ^ ^ O ' l f j ^ Taipeis Hsin-hsing Shu-chu[f-'jj^-^" J?Q] » 1969 ed., p.232, and also "Shen-hsien L e i " [ - s J ^ - f i n T'ai-p'ing Kuanq-chi f^V \ * E d i t e d ky L i Fang[^" and others. Shanghais Sao-yeh Shan-fang [ - | | S ) / | ] * 1923 ed., chiian 7, p.22. The latter work i s the more detailed of the two. 11. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.6. Except for lines 2, 6, and 8, the translation i s Nielson's,op. c i t . , p.78, > . 12. Hung Mai [ ) ^ - ^ J . Jung-chai Shih-hua 4^4\4'j\ chiian 4, p.10 in Hsiieh Hai Lei Pien [ l ^ ^ | | ijfe], Han 13, Taiwans I-wen Yin-shu-kuan [fa £ l.'{j> , 1967 ed. 63 plain [tan'/j^j as Po Chii-i says, the mysterious imagery of the Taoist is.vividly.set.in.relief, against, the background of the obscure, cold and rainy autumnal.sky.. In the f i r s t two lines of this poem, the poet t e l l s us he was in his study on a cold autumn day., This cold and quiet atmosphere.suggests, to the,sensitive poet his Taoist friend who was li v i n g on the mountain. Prom these two lines, the. emotions of the poet are transmitted vividly to the reader and hence, the v i t a l i t y of this poem i s created. The third and fourth lines express the imagination of the. poet about the l i f e of his Taoist friend. The poet tries in these two lines to convey the mysterious l i f e and whereabouts of the Taoist on the one hand and, on the other, to describe the hardships the Taoist must endure in such bad weather. In the f i f t h and sixth lines, the poet says that he wants to bring some wine to the Taoist to comfort him during the evening wind and rain; but the poet expresses his disappointment in the last two lines saying that he does not know where he can find him on this cold mountain covered with fallen leaves. These two lines also transmit a strong emotion to reader, causing him to feel a sense of loss and disappointment. Another poem which has a similar elegance i s the one Wei sent to his friend Ch'iu Tan. 13 To Yiian-wai Chfiu on an Autumn Night I think of you on this night in autumn, 13. Yuan-wait an o f f i c i a l t i t l e . 64 I s t r o l l along and recite poems in the cold weather. I hear the pine-cones dropping on the lonely h i l l , 14 Doubtless the hermit i s s t i l l unsleeping. Wei wrote this poem inspired by the thought of his friend on an autumn night. It was so quiet on the lonely h i l l where the poet was s t r o l l i n g that he could hear the sound of the dropping pine-cones. Alone he recited poems, and the cool autumn night caused him to feel more lonely. In such, surroundings, he wished he could have a friend with whom to talk and s t r o l l together. At that moment, the image of the hermit spontaneously came into his mind. He supposed that the lonely hermit would s t i l l be awake as he himself was. But what use i s such speculation when the hermit i s so far away ? This poem also transmits a strong emotion to the reader and evokes in him a sense of loss. Besides Po Ghu-i, Ko Ch•ang-chih also highly valued Wei's five-character verse. He praised i t by saying that Wei 15 Ying-wu's five-character verse i s beyond ordinary bounds. 14. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.9. Except for lines 2 and 3, the translation, including the footnote, of this poem i s from Liu Shih-shun [jfVj fjjj ] , One Hundred and One Chinese  Poems. Hongkong i Hongkong University Press, 1967 ed., P.63. 15. See Ko Ch'ang-chih <J , Yun Yu Yang Cfi'iu Iff ifc % - M * c h u * n  l» p» 7» i n Hsiieh Hai Lei Pien. op. c i t . , Han 12. 65 ( i i ) Wei Ying-wu and T'ao Yuan-mingi a Comparison Su Tung-p'o, a famous scholar of the Sung dynasty, not only praises Wei's five-character verse, but also c l a s s i f i e s Wei's poetry as in the same school with T'ao Yuan-ming. Su Tung-p'o's appraisal of Wei's poetry can be seen from his two poems belowi A l i t t l e bird in the wood uses only one branch 16 to build i t s nest. The recluse and his snail-shell of a house suit each other. 17 Lo-t'ien has written three thousand poems in long and short styles, 18 But I love the five-character verse of Wei better. 16. This allusion i s from Chuang Tzut "When the t a i l o r -bird builds her nest in the deep wood, she uses no more than one branch. When the mole drinks at the river, he takes no more than a b e l l y f u l . " See Chuang Chou[|£ jlj ] , "Free and Easy Wandering"[3^j|^] in Nei P ' i e n F C h u a n g Tzu[^ J] . Edited by Yeh Hui-hsiao ^ ] . Hongkong i Shih-yung Shu-chii ('it" 4) ] * 1964 ed., p.9. The English translation i s from Burton Watson, The Complete Works of Chuang Tzu. New Yorki Columbia University Press, 1968 ed., p.32. 17. Lo-t'ien [ | | i ^J , the tzu[<|]of the poet Po Chii-i. 18. See Su Shih[|& $11, "Kuan Ching-kuan-t• ang Hsiao Wei Su-chou S h i h - ^ y ^ ^ l f M^f^fH^in Sa-shih Pu-chu[/^ ^•j$4i]* Edited by cl»a Shen-hsing ^j-f-J"]* Hsiang-yii-chai Ts • ang-pan $j ^^k] * 1 7 6 1 /^-| ^jed., chuan 15, p. 25. 66 19 The mentor was T'ao P'eng-tse, The successor was Wei Su-chou. 20 If you want to find Wang Yu-ch'eng. You w i l l have to look into his five-character 21 verse. As a matter of fact, Wei admired T'ao and often imitated T'ao's poems. Some of his poems are written in a style quite close to T'ao's. As a result, not only Su Tung-p'o, but also many other scholars regard the poetry of Wei and T'ao as belonging to the same school. Chou Tzu-chih, a scholar in the Sung dynasty, comments t Most of the ancient and modern poets liked to imitate Yuan-ming's style. For example, the poems which follow T'ao's are not few in number, but they might embarrass 19. T'ao Yuan-ming [f|J j£\ tf/J] also known as T'ao P'eng-tse [flj |j y.^] since he was once the Subprefect of P'eng-tse Subprefecture. 20. Wang Wei [i Iff] was also known. as Wang Yu-ch • eng [f /(l >$ J since he was once the Vice-president of the Department of State Affairs of the Right [ Shang-shu Yu-ch'eng c^-^V^ >]f] • 21. See Su Shih, "Tz'u-yiin Huang Lu-chih Shu Po-shih Hua Wang Mo-chieh [';U|4-f* I ^ f f f f ^ l . ' o p . c i t . , chiian 30, p. 15. Mo-chieh was Wang Wei's t z u [ f | j . 67 Yuan-ming by their vigorous and beautiful expressions •Frost and dew have faded a l l the grass, Only the chrysanthemums are pretty at this time. If the nature of a thing i s li k e t h i s , Cold and heat make no difference. Plucking the flowers and floating them in unstrained wine, I meet farmers when the sun has set. A l l are drunk under the eaves of the thatched house, Can this happen often in one*s l i f e ?• In this poem of Wei Su-chou•s, not only i s the language similar to T'ao's, the sentiment i s alike too. It must 22 have been written on an inspiration of the moment. Wei's poem above probably imitates the style of a series of T'ao's poems known as "Drinking Wine", especially the sevenths The f a l l chrysanthemums have lovely colors, I pluck the petals that are wet with dew, And float them in this Care Dispelling Thing, To strengthen my resolve to leave the world. I drink my solitary cup alone, And when i t ' s empty, pour myself another. The sun goes down, and a l l of nature rests. 22. Chou Tzu-chih[/f) ^ ^ 1 , Chu-p'o Shih-hua [ ffi A\ 44]'  c1™an 3, p. 37, in Ts'ung-shu Chi-ch'eng l s t s e r . j ^ ^ , tiifjwS* S nanghais Commercial Press, 1936 ed. Wei's poem s 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.4, t i t l e d "In Imitation of T'ao P• eng-tse" t ^ f f Jj 68 Homing birds f l y chirping toward the grove. I s i t complacent on the east veranda* 23 Having somehow found my l i f e again. The expression and style of these two poems are very similar, only the feelings expressed are sli g h t l y different as the atmosphere of Wei's poem i s a b i t more v i t a l . In contrast, T'ao's verse i s more solitary, something he might have written to amuse himself and give voice to the realization of the last l i n e . mentions t Formerly, when people talked about poetry, they ignored Wei Su-chou and Liu Tzu-hou. 2 4 When they talked about calligraphy, they ignored Yang Ning-shih. 2 5 It was not u n t i l Su Tung-p'o discovered these two unknown facts that Wei and Liu were matched with Yuan-ming, and 26 Ning-shih with Yen, Duke Lu. Tung-p'o really did a 27 service to these three persons. 23. T'ao Ch'ien^T^p] , T'ao Yuan-ming Chi [ jtjjj #f[ j|] . Compiled by Wang Yao [•£ $jfj. Peking i Tso-chia Ch'u-pan-she [-^jc # [#^ 4^ 3,1956 ed., P.63. The translation i s from James Robert Hightower, The Poetry of T'ao Gh'ien. Clarendon Press, Oxford, England, 1970 ed., pp. 133-134. Tseng Chi-mai, another scholar in the Sung dynasty, 69 Although Tseng praises Su Tung-p'o for relating Wei's poetry to T'ao's school, i t must be remembered that Su was not the f i r s t to give high appraisal to Wei's poetry. Earlier scholars such as Liu T'ai-chen, Shih Chiao-jan, Po Chu-i and so forth had already recognized the high achievement of Wei's poetry. Ssu-k'u Ch'iuan-shu Tsung-mu T'i-yao commentsi (Wei Ying-wu's) seven-character verse i s inferior to his five-character verse, his new style poetry i s inferior to his old style poetry. His five-character old style poetry, taking T'ao's as i t s source, and amalgamating the influence of the three Hsiehs, i s 28 direct but not rough, elegant but not ornate. It i s quite right for scholars to put Wei's poetry into the same school with T'ao's and the description given in the Shih-p'in of T'ao's poetic style serves quite well to suggest the style of most of Wei's poems too. For example « " ... his style i s sparing of words, and contains scarely any redundancies. He earnestly conveys the genuine classical style; his words have a delicate and satisfying flavour. When we enjoy his writings, we are conscious of his virtuous character ..29 • • • • 28. Yung J u n g a n d others. Ssu-k'U Ch'itan-shu Tsung-mu T'i-yao ^<D f^fl.ffi irf ffil' s h a n g n a i ' Commercial Press, 1933 ed., chiian 149, P.3134^ ^ "The three Hsiehs" refers-to the famous poets Hsieh Ling-yiinplll'I'i^J, Hsieh Huei-lien[4|;f,|,'{^J and Hsieh T • iao[i|fif|J 29. See Chung Jung[/ff "Sung Cheng-shih T'ao Ch'ien Shih" ${J. f^fj^jin Shih-p'in Chu <4 \4.] . Commentary by Wang Chung [y^ c^]. Taipei* Cheng-chung Shu-chii tf^jf)]* 1969 ed., chiian chungQ^ pp. 155-156. ' 70 ( i i i ) Some Examples of the Beauty of Wei's Style However, although 'plain and sparing of words' may describe many of Wei's verse, we have already quoted an example of his Ko-hsing verse form that i s more beautiful and l i v e l y than anything T'ao ever wrote. Even i f we take his five-character verse into account, there are also quite a l o t of verses characterized by elegant diction. Ko Ch'ang-chih points out the following several lines to exemplify this aspects "Cranes in the mist cry over a wilderness of waters. Without cloud or rain, the sky of Ch'u i s empty."30 "In spring the water i s mistless, The bamboo on the deserted h i l l shades the 31 stones. "Matter gives birth to sound, 39 The great voxd i s forever s i l e n t . " 30. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.8, t i t l e d "Strolling Around the Stream"[$f_ ]/|'.]. The sky of Ch'u refers to the sky of the area along Yang-tzu River which belonged to the State of Ch'u in the Chou dynasty (1122-249 B.C.). 31. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.12, t i t l e d "Strolling Around the South Study"\<$JQ ^JM . 32. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8,p.l, t i t l e d "Sound"pf|^y&. The translation for these two lines and the t i t l e i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.127. Ko Ch'ang-chih essay see Ko Ch'ang-chih, op. c i t . , chuan 1, p.7. 71 Ssu-k'u Ch'uan-shu Tsung-mu T'i-yao praises the two linest "The t a l l trees bring forth the cool of summer, The floating cloud discloses the b r i l l i a n t moon." 33 by saying that T'ao Yuan-ming does not have such a style. Chu Hsi was fond of Wei's versest "Cold rain darkens the midnight, Drifting f i r e f l i e s cross over the high pavilion." and Wang Kuo-wei quotes "Drifting f i r e f l i e s cross over the high pavilion" to compare i t to the verses of Feng Yen-ssui "A magpie builds a nest on a t a l l tree. The setting moon brightens the cold grass." and says that they attain the same level of excellence. 3 5 In addition to the above-mentioned, I quote some other celebrated verses of Wei heret 33. See Yung Jung, op. c i t . , chiian 149, p.3134. Wei's verses see CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.5, t i t l e d "After the Rain, Sent to Censor Yuan and Professor L i from the T'ung-te Temple 34. See Chu H s i [ ^ j^] , "Lun Shih"|^fiN{f]in Chu-tzu  Ch'uan-shuT^ $ ] » 1713 0* f S jf-] ed., chuan 65, p.16. Wei's verses see CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.9, t i t l e d "Written to Registrar Ts'ui While Living Alone at a Temple at Night" A ^ A M i m 35. See Wang Kuo-wei [i~ 1$J mj9 Jen-chien Tz'u-hua [/v^4jjf& Pekingi Chung-hua Shu-chii[cfjjrif]], 1955 ed., chiian shang[^_ jj ] , p.10. 72 "The sound of clubs beating on the laundering stone comes from several houses at the foot of the autumnal mountain* In the midst of cold rain, the whole county 36 seems only brambles. Cold fcain, brambles, the sound of the clubs beating on the laundering stone and the autumnal mountain, a l l together compose a refined image to evoke in the reader a sense of melancholy. In these two lines Wei moves us with his unsettled and lonely mood. " Fine rain comes from the empty forest, 37 The water i s covered with rings of ripples." These two lines consist of vivid and subtle words. They present a leisurely elegant picture of the countryside, but compared to the previous couplet, the emotion i s not so deeply f e l t . "In the spring rain, the bell of the forbidden cit y sounds softly, 38 The palace trees blend with the wild mist." These two lines exhibit deliberate parallel 36. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3. p;5,titled "©n ?the Pavilion Sent to Mr. W a n g " i ^ ^ f 1 37. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.9, t i t l e d "The View on the West Stream, Present to Lu Chih" [j£7 ^ f ^ ^ j ^ ^ ] * 38. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, p.6, t i t l e d "Parting with Registrar Wang of Fen-ch'ehg" jjj Jjk^ f 73 construction. Even though Wei does not show strong emotion in them, his description of the soft b e l l , the spring rain and the palace trees that blend with the wild mist conveys a subtle feeling of the spring season. "The returning clouds vanish from sight in the boundless wilderness. The sky is clear, the morning dew fresh. A cool breeze arrives from the lotus in the pond, The wu-t'ung outside the window gradually drops 39 xts leaves more frequently." The background of these four lines i s an autumn morning in Ch»u Prefecture. The clouds that vanish from sight emphasize the vastness of the sky and wilderness. The fresh dew adds to the cool and clear atmosphere we are made to feel this autumn morning. The cool breeze from the pond and the leaves f a l l i n g from the wu-t*ung tree impress on our mind a vivid and fresh picture of the fine morning weather. Through this description, the sharp powers of observation and emotional sensitivity of the poet immediately are conveyed to the reader. In addition to depicting the clear sky and cool weather of autumn days, these verses also transmit a slig h t l y sorrowful feeling of loneliness to the reader. "Willows scatter the gentle breeze, 39. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.8, t i t l e d "Sent to the Senior Secretary Wang"p^ - ^ ij>] • 74 Azure mountain calms my troubled thoughts." 4 0 After working hard in the office, one walks outdoors to take a breath of fresh a i r . When he sees the beautiful scenery and inhales fresh a i r , he w i l l forget his troubled thoughts. Wei applies beautiful diction in these two lines to describe this state exquisitely. His expression achieves a rare delicacy when Wei describes the wind blowing from the willows by saying that i t : i s the breeze that i s scattered by the willows not vice-versa. The same beauty i s attained when he expresses release from his troubled thoughts through enjoyment of the beautiful scenery by saying that the "azure mountain calms my troubled thoughts." Certainly, there are many other beautiful lines in Wei's poetry, but they are too numerous to be detailed here. As for the above-mentioned verses,although their a r t i s t i c L. beauty i s not conveyed by my translation, the reader, by consulting the original text, may appreciate Wei's characteris-t i c - s t y l e . (b) Further Criticism of Wei's Poetry (i) Humourous and Relaxed Poems , Since there are over five hundred of Wei's poems extant, the brief comments above can by no means stand as a comprehensive statement of his achievement in poetry. His 40. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, P.9, t i t l e d " East Suburbs" [^1^] . The translation of these two lines i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , P.148. 75 v e r s a t i l i t y was great and cannot be described in a single, simple formula.' For example, some of Wei's poems have a relaxed manner, an easy style and humourous flavour reflecting his charming personality! Sending wine to the Buddhist Monk Liang-shih In the autumnal mountain, you l i e i l l and cold, So I send three or five cups. Please pour i t into your gourd, 41 And return this gourd to me. Sending More Wine I again send a f u l l gourd, And i t w i l l very l i k e l y return empty, If I do not break this gourd, 42 I wxll soon have wasted my store. In Reply to the Buddhist Monk Liang-shih When He Returned the Gourd My gourd arrived today, But your gourd i s probably already empty. You should drink the cold pond waters, 41. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.6. The translation i s NielsonSs, op. c i t . , p.65-66. 42. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.6. The translation I follow Nielson's, op. c i t . , p.66 76 Like Yen Hui of old. Written in Reply to a Letter from Lu Sung Stating He Was Without a Horse and Would Not V i s i t on Account of the Late Hour Good times should not be missed* In a word, I am looking for your coming. There are s t i l l travelers on the southern path, And in the western wood the sun has not yet set. With a staff in hand, I wait for you in vain in front of my house, Alone I keep a wine-jar amid the flowers. Don't say you have no way of getting here, 44 I know that you have a short-shaft carriage. In the f i r s t three poems, Wei plays a joke with a monk who was his friend. Wei sends him wine saying that i f the gourd does not break, his store w i l l soon be depleted. Finally, he advises the monk to drink pond water in order to avoid wasting wine. In the last poem, Wei playfully teases 43. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.6. The translation i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.66. Yen Hui[/f|i$]was one of Confucius' disciples. He lived in very poor circumstances and used a gourd for drinking, but this failed to upset him. See "Yung-ye T i - l i u " [ J €J$> <T] , Lun Yii Chi-chu [ ^ - f f j ^ f y chiian 3, in Ssu-shu Chi-chu [t^?-^"^"f|]» Commentary by Chu Hsi l^ -JH • T a i iV e i t Taiwan Shu-chii [^ >|'-f"^ ]' 1 9 6 1 ed' * P* 7 4' 44. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p . l . 77 Lu Sung for making excuses not to come. These poems are plain but l i v e l y and interesting. ( i i ) Wei's Achievement in Seven-character Verse The predominant verse-form in Wei's poetry i s the five-character old style verse. Looking into the collected poems of Wei Ying-wu in the seventh Ts'e in the third Han of the Ch'uan T'ang Shih, we find that out of the five hundred 45 and sixty-five poems quoted there, there are only eighty-one in the seven-character verse-form. Among these, thirty-six poems are in miscellanous or Ko-hsing verse forms and these are predominantly but not a l l in seven-character lines. For this reason, most of the c r i t i c s and scholars of poetry disregard Wei's achievement in the seven-character verse-form. But i t i s unfair to say that his seven-character verse i s not worth our attention. In fact, Wei wrote guite a lot of good poems in this form. Besides the beautiful Ko-hsing "The Song of Listening to the Orioles" which i s mentioned above, I quote the following as examples of his excellent seven-character versei 45. If we include two tz'u^^j ] which are not in CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu but appear in the CTS 12/10/Wei Ying-wu, there are altogether five hundred and sixty seven poems written by Wei according to the editors of the Ch'uan T'ang Shih. In addition, there i s a prose-poem [jf^j] by Wei t i t l e d "Ice" j y ^ 0^] which i s not in the Ch'uan T'ang Shih but i s found in the Ch'in- ting Chr&aan T'ang Wen, op. c i t . , chiian 375, p.4819. 78 46 West Stream at Ch'u Prefecture I love the elegant grass growing on the stream banks , Above, a mango bird cries amid the dark trees. Spring tide brings the rain which becomes heavy toward evening, At the deserted ferry-crossing, a lonely boat d r i f t s by i t s e l f . 4 7 Inspired by the View on Sailing from Kung 48 Lo to the Yellow River, and Sent to My Colleagues in the Prefecture and the Subprefecture The waterway sandwiched by azure mountains points eastwards, The large river passes through the great valleys of the southeastern mountains. The cold trees are as indistinct as i f they were beyond the distant sky, The setting sun appears now bright and now faint in this turbulent stream. 46. West Stream [Hsi-chien^yjf^jis also known as Wu-tu River\JJQ £ > , located to the west of Ch'u Prefecture. See L i Hsien, op. c i t . , chiian 18, p.1145. 47. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.9. I follow Nielson«s translation of the t i t l e of this poem, op. c i t . , p.80. 48. Kung L o [ ^ refers to the area along the Lo River [y^JC.] in Kung Subpref ecture. How many years has that solitary village been on 4Q the bank of the I River ? A wild goose f l i e s down on the northerly wind in the clearing sky. To notify my colleagues who roam on a bridge over the Lo River, 50 This loose s k i f f i s d r i f t i n g like my heart. Visi t i n g Wang, the Censor, on My Day Off and Not Finding Him at Home Nine days i n harness, one day rest, I come, but find you not, emptily return. 51 No wonder your poetic inspiration i s freshening to the bones. At your door, facing frozen torrent, snow f i l l e d mountain. 5 2 The f i r s t poem was written when Wei was the Prefect of Ch'u. It was his f i r s t time to have been sent out to the provinces. This poem reflects the calmness and desolation of West Stream. Through i t , Wei's own solitude i s immediately transmitted to the reader. The elegant grass grew on the side's 49. I River[f/ 7JC] , a tributary of Lo River. 50. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.3. 51. Kuai-lai[>f ^ L] = Nan-kuai[|ff f|] , i.e. no wonder. See Chang Hsiang, op. c i t . , p.112. 52. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.14. Except for the t i t l e and l i n e 3, the translation i s Nielson's, op. c i t . , p.117. 80 of the remote stream suggesting Wei's own presence in the distant hinterlands of Ch'u. The cry of a mango bird in the dark trees, the heavy rain toward evening, and the lonely boat at the ferry, in a similar way, a l l emphasize this feeling of the poet. This poem has been given an allegorical interpretation by the Sung c r i t i c Hsieh Fang-te. He commentst Elegant grass growing on the stream banks (symbolizes) the gentleman (Chun-tzu) in the wilderness (i.e. out of 53 of f i c e ) . (This is reminiscent of) the Ode "K'ao P'an". The mango bird crying amid the dark trees (symbolizes) rescals holding (high government) posts. (The line) 54 "artful speech flows l i k e a stream" (is brought to mind). Now, tides always move swiftly so that the speed of a spring tide bringing rain can easily be imagined. The country i s suffering many calamities. The rain which becomes heavy towards evening (suggests) the country in 53. A poem on the theme of the "Happy Recluse" or^ ^ "K'ao P'an"j^-^] in Shih Chinq. See Shih Ching Shih-i - f j fj'i H'] . Commentary by Ch'u Wan-li[/^ if] . Taipei t Chung-hua Wen-Hua Ch'u-pan Shih-yeh-she $f §Jv(\ $ tikjfy^A^* 1959 ed' * p.43. For translation see James Legge, The Chinese Classics. London» Henry Frowde, Oxford University Press, 1893 ed., Vol. IV, part 1, p.93. 54. This i s followed by the line "And the speakers dwell at ease in prosperity" in the poem "Yii Wu Cheng"fdf^J^j£]' See Shih Ching Shih-i, op. c i t . , p.158. For translation see Legge, op. c i t . , p.328. Hsieh, by using this allusion, means to suggest that the second line of Wei's quatrain can be understood as referring to slander by lesser men which Wei suffered at court. 81 p e r i l , the court in confusion, and the decline of the last years of the dynasty into decadence. It is l i k e the last fading of the sun's brilliance with the coming of evening. "At the deserted ferry-crossing, a lonely boat d r i f t s by i t s e l f . " In the vast expanse of the wilderness on a desolate river-bank— (this suggests that) there i s (a man of) genius who can bring the age safely "to shore". The lonely boat dr i f t i n g by i t s e l f at the deserted ferry-crossing (refers) specifically to the fact that Wei's talents were not 55 employed in the service of his ruler. We may not agree to Hsieh Fang-te's interpretation, but we can see that this poem consists of deep emotion and beautiful diction and i s one of Wei's best poems. When compared to the f i r s t poem, the second one above is more immediately attractive, especially the f i r s t four lines which consist of vivid and b r i l l i a n t words. However, the emotion in the f i r s t poem is more deeply f e l t and more subtly expressed. The third poem Wei wrote to his friend Wang, the Censor, on finding he was not at home when Wei went to pay him a v i s i t . It i s an ordinary theme, but, standing in front of his friend's house, Wei i s seized with poetic inspiration upon looking at the snow mountain which he compares to the style of Wang's poetry. The last two lines contain his striking realization. 55. See T'ang Shih Chueh-chu ^ £|Sy!J ] . Selected by Chao Fan [^|f ] and Han Hu[j^ >/|j]. Commentary by Hsieh Fang-ff] » Collated by Mori D a i r a i f ^ A ^ | L ] . Taipei i Kuang-wen Shu-chii[/^ fyl » 1 9 7 0 ed' * c n*ian 1, p . l . 82 ( i i i ) Some Inferior Examples of Wei's Verse As Wei wrote so many poems, inevitably, there are some which are considered to f a l l behind the others in quality, although most of Wei's poems are refined l i t e r a r y productions. The least satisfying are perhaps the occasional poems those written solely for purposes of social intercourse, such ast "Reply to Graduate L i Feng" , "In Response to the Emperor's Poem upon His Bestowing a Banquet on the Day of the Ch'ung-57 yang Festival" , "Written in Jest to Young Ch'ing-shan, in CO Reply to a Poem of Senior Officer Chang" and so forth. Written in Jest to Young Ch'ing-shan, In Reply to a Poem of Senior Officer Chang Heaven gave birth to his outstanding talents, He has never ridden a hobby horse. When he reads a book, he can absorb i t without d i f f i c u l t y , When he takes up his writing brush, the ink flows freely. 56. "Reply to Graduate L i Feng"[^v^j" )c 'J% ] see CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.4. A "~ 57. "In Response to the Emperor's Poem upon His Bestowing a Banquet on the Day of the Ch'ung-yang Festival (the ninth day of the ninth month)" % l ^ \ f|> {] See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.11. 58. "Written in Jest to Young Ch'ing-shan, In Reply to the Poem of Senior Officer Chang" [jf^Jti ^KkMi-i&M' See 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.12. ^ I 83 A sable robe can be handed down from generation to generation* 59 A tree of jade puts forth a new branch. What i s the harm in attaining a fine emolument at an early age ? 60 Kan Lo was a mere boy when he took up a high post. The content of this poem i s no more than a hymn of praise for the youngster Ch'ing-shan. Even though Wei uses metaphorical expression and allusion in order to make i t f l o r i d * he does not succeed in giving i t a very genuine flavor. (c) Two Different Characteristics of Wei's Poetry In general, i t i s reasonable to describe Wei's poems lucid and leisurely. With regard to this, Po Chu-i I have always loved T'ao P'eng-tse, As his lite r a r y inspiration was so profound. I am also amazed at Wei Chiang-chou, 59. A tree of jade [1 ^||] * metaphorically, a talented or noble man. 60. Kan Lo ^ ] took a high o f f i c i a l post as Shang-ch'ing [_t $p]in the State of Ch'in[|^(||] at the end of "Warring States" period (403-221 B.C.) when he was just twelve years old. See Ssu-ma Ch'ien, op. c i t . , chiian 75, pp. 194-195. as calm, sayst 84 Whose poetic sentiment was so lucid and leisurely. Ssu-k'ung T*u also statest "...The flavour of (the poetry of) Yu-ch'eng and Su-chou 62 is lucid and pre-eminent...." Chu Hsi once praised Wei's poetry as 'leisurely* [tzu-tsai PL\ and 'without sound, colour, smell or flavour'. 6 3 Wang Shih-chen statest Among poets who had lucid and plain poetic sentiment, Wei and Liu should be pre-eminent, Their finest passages are mostly to be found in five-character verse. In understanding how to reveal the subtlety of strings and fingers without sound, 64 In no way can Liu-chou be compared with-Su-chou. 61. See Po Chu-i, "T'i Hsun-yang-lou"[$| y|| $| f|L] in Po-shih Ch'anq-ch'ing Chi, op. c i t . , chuan 7, p.36. Chiang-chou was an o f f i c i a l t i t l e of Wei as he was once the Prefect of Chiang. See Chapter I, p . l . 62. Ssu-k'ung T'uf*/) f|j], "Yii Wang Chia P'ing Shih" j$f~ £ 7% ^ f 4$3 i n Ssu-k'ung Piao-sheng Wen-chi[/fi£^ f , chiian 1, p.8. Ssu-pu Ts'ung-k'an 1st Ser., op. c i t . 63. See Chu Hsi, op. c i t . , chiian 65, p.16. 64. See Wang Shih-chen » "Hsi-hsiao Yuan I-shan shou chih-ch'i«[/rf 4®Hiib*) Lun-shih Chiieh-chii Sa-liu Shou C h i h - c h ' i " [ / f i 1 iff <^ ^ <LX.] in Tai-ching-t'ang Ch*iian-chi[-4 if(jf ^-^^ • c h , i " l i e h Shu-t'ang Chiao-k*an-pen[xL.C^^I' Q^ iJ fl»^P.4. Liu-chou \Pf ] * s referred to Liu Tsung-ytian for he was once the Prefect of Liu Prefecture. 85 The above c r i t i c a l judgements w i l l be more correct i f applied primarily to the poems written by Wei when he lived quietly on the bank of the Feng River or after he had adjusted to l i f e in provincial posts away from the capital. The following poem was written when he lived as a recluse on the bank of the Feng Riven On the Feng River Facing the Moon, I Send This Poem to K'ung, Policy C r i t i c and Adviser I think of you who are in the capital, I l i v e plainly in this quiet haven. O f f i c i a l and recluse— no matter how different, This bright moon shines on two understanding hearts. 6 5 When Wei made a leisurely v i s i t to a pavilion in Ch'u Prefecture, he wrote* Everyday, I ascend this pavilion to gaze into the distance, Time slips away unawares. In order to satisfy to the f u l l the Prefect of ». • 66 Hual-nan. 67 Autumnal mountains, numerous red trees. 65. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.11. For the last line of this poem, I follow Nielson's translation, op. c i t . , p.91. 66. Huai-nanjyf!]refers to Ch'u Prefecture, since Ch'u was in the area of Huai-nan Circuit[yff $|j during the T'ang dynasty. See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chiian 40, p.167. 67. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.2, t i t l e d "Up to the Pavilion". The translation for the last line i s Nielson's op. c i t . , p.159. 86 The f i r s t poem Wei wrote to his friend, who took a post at the Imperial palace. The calmness of the night, the b r i l l i a n t moon and the Wei's own l i f e in seclusion compose a lucid picture in this poem. Wei wrote the second poem when he found himself comfortable and calm as he enjoyed the beautiful autumnal scenery in Ch'u. But this characteristic i s not consistently applicable to a l l of Wei's poems, for some are rather restive in expression and s h r i l l i n tone, especially those Wei wrote i n his earlier l i f e . Even the one he wrote to Colonel Yang on arriving in Ch'u Prefecture has an atmosphere quite different from the two poems above t "Being untalented I was naturally not received, But was sent out to the provinces to care for 68 those who are lonely and desolate." In the poem he wrote in Lo-yang during the Kuang-te era, i t seems that he was very angry at the ruthlessness and violence of the government forces who damaged the ci t y and looted the inhabitants instead of keeping peaces "One takes medicine to cure disease, But,unexpectedly, i t may poison the stomach and injure the one who takes i t . 68. See Chapter I, p.40. 87 When the government forces came across the Yellow and Lo Rivers, They damaged both the jade and the stone." In order to match those poems which have been described as calm, lucid and leisurely, we can use • v i r i l e * and 'vigorous* to describe this different category of Wei*s poems. Below are some more examples of this ' v i r i l e ' and •vigorous' type of poemt "Both of our horoscopes contain the chu-niao vanguishment, And we invited the slander of petty men. In carrying out our administration, we sought to use the scales of justice. 70 But making decisions i s l i k e butting a fence." "Now, when I come back, i t i s bleak and desolate, and a l l the houses are empty. The only v i s i b l e activity i s the mist rising around the blue mountain. Being poor I f e l l and was lost in the turmoil, I raise a cry to heaven, but to what avail? My emaciated horse and I, my clothes torn, were about to freeze to death. But fortunately I met you, whose wine cups are 71 f u l l . " x 69. See Chapter I, p.21. 70. See Chapter I, p.24. 71. See Chapter I, pp. 9-10. 88 72 "I once studied the knowledge of the Tsou-lu school, And went to receive commands at court with other o f f i c i a l s . One day, I think I ' l l , give up writing for a military career, 73 Since this troubled time arouses my feelings." The tone of the above poems, at times resentful, at times energetic, i s very different from the following! Facing Flowers of Various Kinds In the morning their red competes with the beautiful scenery, In the evening the white of their dew-laden petals curls up. Their charming appearance seems to express emotion, The d r i f t i n g fragrance f i l l s the whole garden. Alone I reside here holding a post out in the provinces. A l l day long my doors have been shut. If i t were not for the flowers keeping me company, 74 Who would I have to talk to here ? 72. "Tsou-lu" refers to the school of Confucius and Mencius, for Mencius* native home was in the State of Tsou[JjjS] and Confucius • native home was in the State of Lu [-^|~3 • 73. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.11, t i t l e d "On Erecting the Arrow Target" [ ^ ^ ] | | f | [ ] . 74. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.8. 89 On Shan-fu Temple Pavilion A rosy sunset shines on this high pavilion, The green mountain appears beyond the distant forest. Whenever I come up here in f a i r weather to gaze about, 75 My worried heart i s uplifted. These poems describe how Wei tries to drive away his sorrow and loneliness by enjoying the pretty flowers and beautiful scenery. His mood is gentle and calm. Wei Ying-wu was also one of the earliest poets who engaged in writing the tz'u ] which became popular in the. Sung dynasty but was rather new to T'ang poets. Four of Wei's tz'u are found in the Ch'uan T'ang Shih. 76 Two of them are written to the tune "san-t'ai" and other two 77 to the tune "T'iao-hsiao-ling". In short, Wei can be said to command a l l the verse-forms current i n his day and, in terms of style, his verse i s characteristically calm, lucid and leisurely, though occasional examples of a more v i r i l e and vigorous style do occur. 75. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.2. 76. "San-t'ai" » s e e C T S 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 10, pp.6-7, also CTS 12/10/Wei Ying-wu, under the "Tz'u E r h " ^ -] , p.6. 77. "T'iao-hsiao-ling" £||| see CTS 12/10/Wei Ying-wu under the "Tz'u Erh" £|VJ ] , p.6. 90 (d) The Metre of Wei's Poetry In the T'ang dynasty, although the new style poetry [chin-t'i Shih '(^Jf4f J» which includes the quatrain form [ c h u e h - c h u ^ i j ] , regulated verse [Lti-shih f i j M f ] and antithetical verse [p'ai-luM f f ] , was popular, old style poetry [Ku-t'i Shih ^ ^ ^ f J was s t i l l common as well. Wei Ying-wu composed more frequently in the old style than in the new. Of his over five hundred poems, nearly three hundred poems bear no relation to new style poetry as they are not four- or eight-line verse or in antithetical couplets. The poems Wei wrote i n four or eight lines total over two hundred in number, but this does not mean that a l l of these poems are composed in the quatrain or regulated versed-forms of new style poetry, as most of them do not follow the rules of the new style poetry. Among these two hundred some poems, only ninety-five are really new style poetry as they are written i n accordance with the patterns of Chin-t'i Shih. A l l the others, whether written in four or eight lines, belong to the old style. The following "Meeting Feng Chu in Ch'ang-an" can serve as an example. Ch'ang-an Yii Feng Chu 91 k'e wen ts'ung tung-fang * 1 shang k'e shan t s ' a i ming-ming yang-yang «* . i f f tso pin ii pieh I1 ssu J pa-ling ^ vi ft ho-wei yin hua yen chin 4 " sheng mai f Cheng hsin chi l a i #-yii l a i fu ^ ~ tof>ai tj ch'un lu Meeting Feng Chu in Ch'ang-an A traveler comes from the east. His clothes are wet with the rain of Pa-ling. I ask him, "For what purpose do you come here ? 78 78. Pa-ling was twenty l i east of Wan-nien Subprefecture. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 1, p.3 92 79 "To buy an axe for opening mountain land." 80 In the drizzle, flovers are in f u l l bloom. Drifting about, those newborn swallows. Our last parting seemed but yesterdays now i t i s already spring, And several strands of white hair have grown at 81 my temples. Using • l * to represent level tones [p*ing-sheng ^ j|jjL] and 'd* to represent deflected tones [tse-sheng IA^M^ » the tonal pattern of the above poem i s as below* d 1 1 1 1 1 d d 1 d d d 1 1 1 d 1 1 d d 1 1 1 d 1 1 1 d 1 d d d 1 d 1 d 1 1 d d This tonal pattern does not follow either one of the tonal patterns of five-character regulated verse, even taking 79. Y i i So interprets this line as a metaphor hinting that Feng Chu wanted to seek for an o f f i c i a l job. See Y i i SojjjL , "Shou Wei Ying-wu •Ch'ang-an YU Feng Chut Shih"[$[j^|, f)f) 'iJt'JL i n Wen-shih, Vol. 4 [^^f $ . Peking", Chung-hua Shu-chii[ # 1969 ed., p.40. 80. Ming-ming[^ <j£l] , drizzly. In this interpretation I follow Y i i So, op. c i t . , p.40 81. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.13. 93 into account the deviations permitted on the f i r s t and third 82 characters of each line and so forth. Furthermore* the middle four lines of this poem do not comprise two couplets of parallel construction such as are compulsory in regulated verse. Here I take one of Wei's quatrain form verses as another examples Wan f j shih-chieh Ying-huo pien 1 wu tu jao if se b yiieh chin d shuai i hsin ts'ao t T chiu chu 4 % c ying kuang ts ' a i 4 fu l i e n l i u i Enjoying F i r e f l i e s The fading grass i s transformed by the changing season* The appearance of things indicates the time i s approaching autumn. 82. For the tonal patterns of five-character regulated verse see Wang L i /t}]» Han-yu Shih-lii-hsueh Ofj| 4% yW jjj-§ ]. Shanghais...Chiao-yu-Ch'u-pan-shet^ ^ & rfKM 1/ 1963 ed., Chapter II, Section 6, p.72. 94 As they f l y across the moonlight, their glow is dimmed, But when they f l y round the bamboo grove, their 83 light flows out again. The tonal pattern of this poem is as belowt 1 d d 1 d d d d 1 1 d d d I d d d 1 d 1 It does not f i t either one of the tonal patterns for five-character quatrain verse, even taking into account the deviations permitted in the f i r s t and third characters of 84 each line and so forth. According to Wang L i ., any four-line verse that does not f i t any one of the tonal patterns for quatrain verse 85 has to be classif i e d as old style. The rhyme categories of Wei Ying-wu*s old style poetry sometimes appear quite similar to the ancient rhyme categories too. That i s to say, he uses the characters which rhymed in earlier days but whose pronunciation had changed so that by the time the Kuanq-yunfy| .^"jwas compiled, they 83. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.8. 84. For the tonal patterns of five-character quatrain verse see T'ang Shih San-pai Shou Hsiang-hsi ^j^f^^'fl* Compiled^ by Yii Shou-chen \^ Jj_j . Hongkong i Chung-hua Shu-chii [ if jp-J ' (Q ] , 1957 ed., p. 265. 85. See Wang L i » op. c i t . , Chapter II, Section 4, p.41. 95 no longer rhymed. For example, he uses •chih* [^] to rhyme with 'lai'JjjJL] in one poem.86 fChih"[^__] i s in the rhyme-group •chih*[^.] , while •lai'f^JL] belongs to the group • h a i , [ l ^ ] . According to the Kuang-yiin, they cannot be used * interchangeably • [t'ung-yung l^j f^j ] in writing poetry. However, T'ao Ch'ien uses •chih* [£_] » •tz»u»[1^] and ' l a i ' ^ ] to rhyme with 'pei ' [ ^ f \ ) , •shih* Y%jj] , •ts»ai,[^] and *i ' [$g] in his poem "Begging for Food". 8 7 The Kuang-yiin, however, places *lai ' [ ^ L ] and 'ts'ai* 1^ ] in the )»hai»[P^] rhyme-group, »chih»[*tj , •shih ' j>f| '] and • t z , u . , [ ^ ] in the 'chih» group, and •pei'rff*] in the 'hui ' [ $ J group. The rhymes 'hui ' p ^ J and ' h a i ' j j ^ ] are? 't'ung-yung', but they are not 't'ung-yung* with the rhyme •chih* [AL] according to the Kuang-yun. Since Wei was born and educated i n the Ch'ang-an area, his own speech i s unlikely to have differed radically from the pronunciation recorded in the Kuang-yiin. We can hence reject the po s s i b i l i t y of the influence of a non-standard dialect in his rhyme categories. We must assume, then, that his rhyme categories were influenced by the old poetry of the Six Dynasties period. It seems to me that the latter i s a very f a i r possibility, as we have seen, by examining his poetry, 86. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, p.6, t i t l e d "Song about the Master of Pao Monastery's White Mynah" 'W ffjf <| to 87. "Begging for Food"L"U (M» s e © T'a° Ch'ien, op. c i t . , p.116. 88. See Ch'ung-chiao Sung-pen Kuang-yun ^ J^M^ jffy\ . Edited by Ch'en^ P'eng-nien[^,|j j^-]and others. Taipeii Kuang-wen Shu-chii ^  /fj ] , 1961 ed. , p. 001. 96 that Wei was rather familar with and also fond of old style poetry. In his comments on Wei's poem "Moved by the Mirror", Nielson states incorrectly that "the second rhyme word appears 89 to be out of rhyme". The rhyming characters of this poem are a l l i n the. entering tone [ju-sheng 7^f'^\t 'fa'[^->] , 'mo '[y^J, •f»«[|£] , 'hsieh ' [ | K l . 'yueh ' [jf] . 'Fa ' ^1 , •t*'[J$£q.. •hsieh '[Jj^} and 'yueh' ] are in the rhyme-group 'yueh' [J:j ] , while the second rhyme character *mo'[y^Jl i s i n the rhyme-group 'mofy^jand is not out of rhyme because the rhyme-groups •yueh' [J- J and 'mo'[yj?J can be rhymed together for they are «« 90 designated 't'ung-yung' in the Kuanq-yun. The fact that Wei's poems are written chiefly in the old style and sometimes follow ancient rhyme categories,tells us why Ssu-k'u Ch'uan-shu Tsung-mu T'i-yao reserves i t s highest praise for his old style poetry. And i t follows for these same reasons that many scholars have compared him favorably to famous poets before the T'ang dynasty, such as T'ao Ch'ien and the •Three Hsiehs'. As an appendix to this chapter, two poems written by scholars contemporary with Wei are quoted below. These poems compared Wei to Hsieh Ling-yun and Hsieh T'iao. Meng Chiao statest 89. See Nielson, op. c i t . , p.139. Wei's poem is in CTS 3/7/Wel Ying-wu 6, p.12. 90. JSee Ch'ung-chiao Sung-pen Kuanq-yun, op. c i t . , p.427. 97 / 91 Like Hsieh Ke when you recite a verse* It i s as i f the sense of hearing i s purified as when the frost f a l l s . Your writing embodies a gentle v i t a l i t y * Reverberating li g h t l y through a l l things. Fine trees planted where i t best suits them, Will produce not a single crooked branch. 92 The words of Hsu and Yii are no more than dust and grime, Your gold and jade-like poems are more comparable 93 to those of Ts'ao and Liu. Your words have a classic refinement. The scenery seems to have been refreshed and brightened by them. Duckweed i s a kind of floating plant, Aquatic rushes flourish i n a corner of the pool. 91. Hsieh K'e[|||^-] refers to Hsieh Ling-yun [4f| <|f . Hsieh Ling-yun was brought up by Tu C h i h ^ i "y^] . When he returned home at the age of seventeen, he was called guest-boy [ke-erh^-|^] by his family. See Chung Jung, op. c i t . , chuan shang, p.112. 92. Hsu and Y i i refer to Hsu Lingp f ^ f^T] and Y i i Hsin L)^jHlf 3 » both were poets of the Six Dynasties. 93. Ts'ao and Liu refer to the famous poets Ts'ao Chih[t|?-5£j|] and Liu L i n g ^ . j f ^ i n the period of the Three Kingdoms. 98 94 These were celebrated in song by K'ang-loi Now you gather his essence. Despite the poor quality of my poem, 95 I would wish to have i t linked with yours. Ch'in Hsi, who was also famous for his five-character verse, wrotei I have long been dwelling i n seclusion without schemes in my mind, All: of> a sudden,! I~ putvontthis^green-rrobeajand the 96 friendly gulls f l y away. 94. Duke K'ang-lo[^ |||'^] was the t i t l e given to Hsieh Ling-yiin by the emperor. For his poem describing the duckweed and rushes see Hsieh Ling-yun, "Ts'ung Ghin-chu-chien Yiieh Ling Hsi-hsing^M[f$>'f YI$ $^fj y$J^> i n Hsieh K'ang-lo  Shih Chu[4|([ £[< fgA]. Pekingi Jeii-min Wen-hsueh Ch'u-pan-she $ » 1958 ed., p.77. 95. Meng ChiaofJ): ytj.] , "Tseng Su-chou Wei Lang-chung Shih-chun"fjf f f ^ H j-- ^ " $p> f in CTS 6/5/Meng Chiao 6, p. 4. 96. The gulls f l y away because Ch'in Hsi i s now a scheming o f f i c i a l . This allusion i s from Lieh Tzut "There was a man l i v i n g by the sea-shore who loved seagulls. Every morning when he went down to the sea to roam with the seagulls and; more birds came to him than you could count in hundreds. His father said to him* 'I hear the seagulls a l l come roaming with you, bring me some to play with.* Next day, when he went down to the sea, the seagulls danced above him and would not come down." See Lieh Yu-kbu I?j % ^ 3 » " T h e Yellow Emperor " [ ^ | ] , i n Lieh Tzu[fj ^ ] . Hongkong t T'ai-p'ing Shu-chii [ A , tp- -^"vij ] » 1963 ed., chiian 2, p.13. The translation i s from Angus Charles Graham, The Book  of Lieh Tzu. Londoni J . Murray, 1960 ed., p.45. 99 Even though poetic thoughts come to me, I am at a loss, 97 Because Hsieh Hsuan-hui i s in the county. Wei Ying-wu replied with the following poemt go In Response to Ch'in, the Collator I learned that you shut yourself in a mountain cottage for thirty years, The green bamboo tablet ornamented with beards ' 9 of shark's skin was abandoned near the bed. Don't say that Mr. Hsieh just happens to be in the county. It's because of you that I won't write f i v e -character verse today. 1 0 0 97. See Ch'in H s i f J ^ J , "Chi-shih Feng-ch'eng Lang-chung Wei Shih-chiin" f ^ %_ $p tj^f£j&]in CTS 4/8/ Ch'in Hsi, p.7. The commentary beneath the t i t l e statest "At this time, the writer was on probation as a Collator of the Imperial Library." Hsieh Hsuan-hui [4 | f i ^ ] was Hsieh T'iao's tzupf] . 98. Commentaryi "Ch'in Hsi." 99. A tablet was held before the breast at an audience and was formerly used as a writing tablet i n China. A mottled bamboo tablet ornamented with beards of shark's skin was used by a great o f f i c e r . See "Yti-tsao" [•£• y<|t] , in L i Chi Chin-chu G"in-i \$j4ltfiJyf4^'\. Commentary by Wang Meng-ou\_\ ^  ifjQ. Taipeit Commercial Press, 1971 ed., chuan 13, p.403. 100. CTS 3/7/Wei Yina-wu 5. n . l l . 100 It i s interesting to see that when Wei Ying-wu met Ch'in Hsi, they admired each other. Although both of them were famous for their five-character verse, on this occasion they hid their speciality, and, instead, exchanged tributes in seven-character verse. CHAPTER III THE PERSONALITY AND THOUGHT OF WEI YING-WU AS EXPRESSED IN HIS POETRY (a) From Spoilt Youngster to Honest O f f i c i a l In his youth, Wei served as a palace guard. He was a spoilt youngster and somewhat of a rascal. He made trouble in his neighbourhood and did a l l sorts of bad things. He confessed his bad behavior in a poem he wrote to his friend Colonel Yang.1 It takes sincerity and courage for someone to confess his own i l l repute to another, especially after one has already become a government o f f i c i a l . Wei did not attempt to cover up his bad behavior, but admitted that he had been a rascal. In this way we can see that Wei was a sincere gentleman. Concerning his student days at the --'t'ai-hsueh',.. he recallss "When young, I studied at the t'ai-hsueh, 2 I arrogantly sneered at the other students." 1. See Chapter I, pp.10-11. 2. See Chapter I, p.12. 101 102 His bad conduct probably improved after his mind had matured. In addition, Wei's frequent self-cultivation in Buddhist temples must also have affected his behavior. F i r s t l y , the tranquillity of the Buddhist temples gave him a good opportunity to nurture his inner self) secondly, in that religious atmosphere he made friends with many Buddhist monks and Taoists who must have had a strong influence on his character. In the collected poems of Wei, there are twenty-one which were written directly to Buddhist monks or mentioned his relationship with them, and at least six poems which were dedicated to Taoists. Below is a poem that describes Wei's roaming with one of his friends who was a Buddhist monks An Autumn Night's Wandering in the Western Study with the Monk Shen-ching In the morning, we ascend the western study to gaze about, And the evening arrives unawares. It i s just the time of intersection of summer and autumn, Mist arises from the wilderness. We s i t down and l i s t e n to the cool wind that springs up, While the bright moon li g h t l y dispels the clouds. Indistinctly, the mountains are s t i l l concealed, Glittering, the rivers are just revealed. 103 As every thing i s so secluded, the night i s extraordinary, Since the environment i s so tranquil, our enjoyment overflows. That I refrain from scheming i s not due to contempt for the world, It i s only because of lacking good reputation. 3 I study the void and set myself in order, How much more so when I am keeping company with 4 this Buddhist monk. This poem clearly indicates that Wei had begun to associate with Buddhist monks and i f we assume that this association was a product of the poet's own interest in Buddhism, i t seems not unlikely to suppose that his behavior had entered a new phase. He was no longer a trouble maker, but a reserved and modest gentleman. His many masterpieces which have a lucid, calm and leisurely style must have been written i n this type of tranquil and restrained frame of mind. But this was not the whole countenance of Wei. He also had a s t r i c t and positive manner, especially in adminis-tering the law. Wei upheld i t frankly and honestly. With reference to the incident in which he punished some soldiers 3. The void [k'ungr$>] refers to the Buddhist doctrine which regards a l l things in the world as originally 'empty', *&mpty' i n the sense of not possessing any ultimate or absolute rea l i t y . 4. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.6. 104 during his service as Assistant Subprefect of Lo-yang, we can see his sincerity and strictness, and also notice his regard for the importance of the lav. Concerning this case, Nielson says that Wei's actions may have been prompted by 5 his disgust for his own behavior during his youth. If this was indeed the reason, then we can also see how Wei deeply repented his past breaking of the law and bringing trouble to others. In the meantime, he devoted himself to legislation designed to prevent the same destruction from occurring again. "A square hole cannot take a round peg. A straight stick cannot be made into a wheel." These two lines of Wei's perfectly describe his straight-forward personality. Wei hated those who broke the law. As an example of this, we have already seen how, when he arrived in Lo-yang to take up the post of assistant subprefect, he expressed his resentment against the government forces who had looted 7 the inhabitants. Even in his late years, Wei's uprightness in administration was consistent. For instance, when he was the Prefect o£ Su, L i Kuan wrote letters to him on behalf 5. See Nielson, op. c i t . , p.25. 6. See Chapter I, p.25. 7. See Chapter I, pp. 21-22. 105 g of two men complaining about Wei*s strictness. These matters show Wei's sincere, frank personality on one hand and his high regard for legislation on the other. But Wei Ying-wu was not an o f f i c i a l who only knew to oppress others and not bear responsibility. In fact, he was deeply concerned about the masses. He always went out 9 of his way to make inquiries of **the people i n distress." When he started to ponder things, the thought of how to settle "disorderly a f f a i r s " always came to his mind.3*0 He expressed his pity for the poor people by saying that he "would rather go out of office than dun the people for payment of their taxes." 1 1 He was ashamed to be 8. See L i Kuanf^" , "Tai I Shang Su-chou Wei Shih-chun Shu" [/^ J|_ £ $^^\^7&Ji a n d " T a i L i T'u-nan Shang Su-chou Wei Shih-chiin Lun Tai Ch*a Shu" if) JC-! M 1 i n Ch*in-ting Ch'dan T'ang Wenv op. c i t . , chiian 533, pp.6863-6865, also Lo Lien-t'ien, op. c i t . , pp.51-52 and Yung Jung, op. c i t . , p.3134. 9. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.7, t i t l e d "Feasting at the Prefectural Pavilion on a Spring Day" ^J^J^-] . 10. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p . l , t i t l e d "Written on Looking at Lo-yang City from a Height"jV^ % 11. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.8, t i t l e d "In Response to Ts'ui, the Commissioner of Waterways" [^-^{ ^ ->jc]. 'Ts'ui, the Commissioner of Waterways' refers to Ts'ui Chuo[$ j^] , who was the husband of Wei Ying-wu's younger cousin. Registrar Ts'ui i n Chapter II, footnote 34, refers to the same man. See Chao Lin[^|_^jj], Yin Hua L u f f f ^ / A l . . Shanghai! Ku-tien Wen-hsueh Ch'u-pan-she \^j^$J^ # tffe^i]» 1957 ed., chiian 6, p. 114, also Ts'en C h u n g - m i e n ^ , T'ang-ihih Yii-shenfjj| j ^ f f l'|p • Shanghai! Chung-hua Shu-chii [tf^'jfjjt}] * 1 9 6 0 e d " chiian 2, p.115. 1G6 exalted since he had "not yet seen the people dwell in 12 peace and comfort." In the poem "Sent to L i Tan and Yuan Hsi", he states t In last year's blooming season I met you and then was forced to leave. Today the flowers bloom again and one year has already passed. The affairs of the world are vast and hard to predict, The melancholy of spring i s gloomy, and I sleep alone. My body i s often troubled with ailments, and I think of retirement to the country f i e l d s . There are s t i l l homeless wanderers here, so I feel ashamed to receive my salary. I hear that you wish to come to inquire after me. But from the western pavilion I have already 13 seen the moon wax f u l l y several times. Wei f e l t ashamed because there were s t i l l vagrants in the area he governed. He even thought of quitting office because he was unable to help them settle down. He also 12.CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.7, t i t l e d "Feasting with Several Scholars in the Prefectural Residence on a 13. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.5. 107 wished to patronize the people under his jurisdiction, especially those who suffered misfortune such as widows and widowers. An example of this attitude can be seen in the last line of a poem which he wrote as an account of his v i s i t to a temple. At the temple he received food from a woman farmers Arriving at the West Peak Temple and Receiving Food from a Woman Farmer Now climbing up a c l i f f , now following a stream, I eventually arrive at the abode of recluses. The birds chirp, the springs and the valleys are warm, From the soft earth the sprouts spread out. Resignedly, I ascend the stone house to rest, Looking down I enjoy the f i s h in the pool. A woman farmer gives me a fine present, The remains of her family*s New Year's Eve supper.1 I often wonder why some people throw away their money on drink. It must be because I am far from being an enlightened worthy. But what can I do now to recompense her kindness ? I should consider how to help widows and widowers.1 14. P'o-sa [y^rfy * P'o-san[y^.|£]. The people along the Huai River region called their New Year's Eve supper "p'o-san". See Chang Ch• i-yun[j^ jf- and others, Chung-wen Ta  Tz'u-tien [tj? jjK^^ Taipeii Chung-kuo Wen-hua Hsiieh-yuan [if $ I j U f ' H t i ] ' 1 9 6 8 '* e n t r v 1 8 6 4 ° - 9 « 15. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.11. 108 Once and again Wei mentions this idea. In the poem t i t l e d "Meeting Colonel Yang" 1 6 previously cited* he mentions his willingness to give assistance to lonely and desolate people. When he arrived at Chiang Prefecture to take up the post of Prefect, he mentions i t again in the last two lines of the following poem t On Just Having Arrived i n the Prefecture P'en-eh'engl? was a great county in times gone by. A great river of a thousand l i passes through i t . In i t s l o f t y places, t a l l trees grow, Precipitous mountains surround the high battlements. The smoke from the inhabitants': kitchen f i r e s appears quite late. The vegetation in the outskirts i s luxuriant. A great flood destroyed the northern territory, The lofty southern mountains are covered by lush trees. Originally the inhabitants here were happy with their l i v e s , h 16. See Chapter I, p. 40. 17. P'en-ch'eng[y^ ^ ] , the name given to the Hsiln-yang Subpref ecture [y| p| JJ>V] in the second year of the Ta-yeh era(605-617) i n the Sui dynasty. It was renamed Hsiin-yang Subpref ecture in the f i f t h year of the Wu-te era(618-627) in the T'ang dynasty. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 28, p. 6. 109 Why did they f i n a l l y flee from here ? 18 In the bygone years there was a period of bad harvests. Back taxes have accumulated l i k e an i s l e t . It i s just over a month since I arrived in this county, A l l day long I have to unravel the tangled 19 threads. I s t i l l have no time to entertain my friends and guests• Since I am exhausted from working on o f f i c i a l documents. The virtuous governors of old spread their lofty idealism here, I can only uphold i t and am ashamed of having no further contribution. Why should I wait for the war to cease ? At present I ought to comfort the lonely and desolate people. 2 0 18. Han-sui[f ^ ] i s given as tsao-sui fy] i n other editions of Wei's collected poems. For example, Ssu-pu Pei-yao edition. See Wei Su-chou Chi ffi jjfc *H] ^ ] , Ssu-pu Pei-yao Tiffi3&^>it§$f\ed. Shanghais Chung-hua Shu-chii [^ 'f ' vf 4] J * 1 9 3 6 ed" c n " a n 8» P« 6* translation i s based on the latter edition. 19. To unravel the tangled threads» metaphorically, to set the complicated affairs or government i n order. 20. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, pp. 3-4. j no From the above poem, we can also see how Wei made an effort to cope with the affairs of people under his government. A similar attitude i s also reflected in his two poems "An Expression of My Feelings in Kao-ling, Sent 21 to Lu, the Chief Cleric of San-yuan" and "Sent to the Of f i c i a l s i n the Office of the Superior Prefecture on 22 Envoy to Yiin-yang." The second poem w i l l be f u l l y given here for details Sent to the Off i c i a l s i n the Office of the Superior Prefecture on Envoy to Yiin-yang Early in the morning, I start on a journey, on order from the Superior Prefecture, I have no time to rest, though the weather i s hot, Since I have to go to Yiin-yang, a hundred l i away, To make inquiries about the inhabitants suffering from the flood. Heaven often causes the seasons to be out of their due, Why does i t not equally confer the bounty of rain and dew. When I look up at the top of the t a l l tress, I can s t i l l see traces of the torrent. 21. Fully translated in Chapter I, pp.34-35. 22. Partially quoted in Chapter I, p. 29. I l l Now the fine young sprouts are no longer drowned, Where once was only wild thicket. Although the ruined walls s t i l l f i l l this old town, The inhabitants return happily for they w i l l be able to settle down. Walking circuitously, I ford the read floods, To go up the steep h i l l , I follow the watercourse. Since the benevolent'.worthy worries; over these suffering people, I myself am pleased to serve them. You, gentlemen in the court, Are talking and laughing, i t makes me desire 23 to see you. From the beginning of this chapter, we have seen how Wei expressed his hatred for oppressors. We have also noted his compassion for the poor. Putting these two feelings together, Wei wrote many poems to reflect the way of l i f e which existed in the society of the T»ang dynasty. Through his poems, we can see that the l i f e of the ruling class was extremely extravagant while the common people suffered b i t t e r l y . 23. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.5. Summer Ice Song 24 Down from the deep shaft of a spring. During blazing hot summer days. Before the dew from heaven has melted— As the palace gates open— i t i s given to the noble. Crushed, li k e shattered jade, in squares li k e jade incised. The whitewashed walls are cool, the exquisite feast mat spread. The jade water jug and s i l k fans are also splendid. Seated are beautiful g i r l s dressed entirely in white. Cold within such a short distance of heat alters the season. How do you gentlemen know of the scorching heat just outside your door ? Dulled by rich mutton and sweet wine, You drink i t and are refreshed, but what should you think of ? You should think of the bitter t o i l of the ice cutters who rush to and fro, 24. Yuan [-^ J] i s given as hsiian ] in some other editions. CTS edition uses "yuan" to replace "hsuan" to avoid the taboo of Ch»ing Sheng-tsu 1^ ^$_) whose name was Hsuan-yeh . 113 When, in the twelfth month, their sweat drops 25 into the deep shaft l i k e rain. Gathering Jade The government conscripted the local swain, 26 To gather jade at Lan-ch ,i. Roofless under the steep c l i f f s at night, He sleeps in the rain, deep among the brambles. His lonely wife returns from paying the rice-tax, She sobs bi t t e r l y in the southern part of her 27 house. Watching the Field Laborers In the fine rains the myriad plants grow anew. The f i r s t spring thunders rumble at the beginning 25. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 10, p.4. Except for lines 7, 12, 13 and 14, the translation i s Nielson's, op. c i t . , p.104. A 26. Lan-ch»i[ij^ f^-] also known as. Lan-shui[j|l?JC] , Lan-ku-shui[^ ^_7J<L] or Mu-hu-kuan-shui [^^I^J ?Jsl . It i s a tributary of the Pa-shui[j$| 7]^.] . The source of Lan-ch»i is Lan-t*ien Valley[|| [<Q ^ J In Lan-t»ien Subprefecture which i s famous for i t s beautiful jade. See Lu Fei-kuei, op. c i t . , p. 2529, and also Sung Min-ch»iu [ i f ' ^ U . ^ ] » Ch*ang-an Chih [J^J^ j^] . Ling-yen Shan-kuan Ts»ang-pan tfH^'^'f^W' 1784[|^ff-f/l] ed., chuan 16, _pp.2-3, 6-. 27. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 10, p.6. Except for the last l i n e , the translation i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.97. 114 28 of 'Excited Insects'. Field laborers have a few idle days, But now the plowing and planting begin. The hardy males are a l l in the fi e l d s ; Drying yards and vegetable gardens are put in order. They only return in the late shadows, Watering their oxen at west stream. They are not bitter because of the hunger and t o i l ; In fact, they rejoice because of the moisture. But there i s not one day's food in the granaries, And government service forced labour continues. I am ashamed that the salaries of those who do not t i l l , 29 Comes from the farmsteads. Wei's admirer, Po Chii-i, was deeply influenced by Wei's compassion for the people. Po also wrote many poems to express his sympathy for the suffering people and to accuse the oppressive ruling class. Pots two poems which 28. 'Excited Insects' [Ching-chih ^ 4$^ ] » one of the twenty-four climatic periods [Erh-shih-ssu Chieh-ch'i C-% ^ if ful i n t o which the lunar year i s divided. The 'Excited Insects' term begins from March the f i f t h or the sixth. 29. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.6. Except for lines 2 and 12, I follow Nielson's translation, op.cit., p.96. 30. For the details of Wei's influence on Po, See Ch'en Chieh-jen[^$£/vJ , "Wei.Ying-wu and Po Chii-i" 4% (9jk in Wen-hsueh I-ch'an [4 W\\k\ , No.251, Pekingi Kuang-ming Jih-paoaj^ fl 15/3/1959, P.6. 115 are quite similar in attitude to Wei's "Watching the Field laborers" are quoted belowt Watching the Reapers Harvest Wheat T i l l e r s of the s o i l have few idle months, In the f i f t h month their t o i l i s double-fold. A south-wind v i s i t s the fields at night; The fiel d s are covered with yellow wheat. Wives and daughters shoulder baskets of rice , Boys carry flasks of beverages. Following one after another, they bring them to the f i e l d s , To the hardy males on the southern h i l l slope. Whose feet are burned by the hot earth they tread. Whose backs are scorched by flames of the shining sky. Tired they t o i l , caring nothing for the heat, Grudging the shortness of the long summer day. Also there i s a poor woman, With an infant held close at her side. With her right hand she gleans the fallen grain; On her l e f t arm a broken basket hangs. Hearing her conversation with others, The listeners sigh with sadnesst The harvest from her own land has a l l been used to pay taxes, She has to glean this grain to feed her hungry stomach. 116 And I today...[sic] by virtue of what right, Have I never once tended f ield or tree ? My government-pay i s three hundred piculs, At the year's end I have s t i l l grain in hand. Thinking of this, secretly I grew ashamedt 31 And a l l day, the thought lingered in my head. Watching a Harvest The labours of the world do not attract mei I am usually happy and tranquil. Nights, I go to look at the f i e l d s , And quietly walk alongside village hamlets. The harvest i s piled in the f i e l d , Flocks of sparrows chirp in f l i g h t . How can the year's bounties be only for man ? The sounds of birds and beasts are also joyous. An old man of the fields meets me and i s pleased; He s i l e n t l y gets up and arranges the wine cups. Hands reverently drawn in sleeves, he invites me to partake Of wine remaining from the autumn sacrifies. Embarrassed by his diligence and reverence, 31. See Po Chu-i, op. c i t . , chiian 1, pp.3-4. Except for the t i t l e and lines 4, 6, 7, 8, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20 and 23, the translation i s reproduced from Arthur Waley, The Translation From The Chinese. U.S.A. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. t 1941 ed., p.142. 117 My goosefoot. walking stick i s tarried-calmed. His words and actions are natural and truthful, And I am unaware of (any) evils of farmers. I stop drinking to ask him about ordinary things. He t i l l s the f i e l d and his wife and children harvest. Their muscular vigors are harassed by t o i l , Their clothing and food are often simple and poors I feel ashamed that salaried o f f i c i a l s , Never t o i l i n the f i e l d s . F i l l i n g themselves without t o i l i n g , How does this d i f f e r from the man of Wei's cranes ? Both poets f e l t ashamed when they saw the results of the farmers* t o i l so easily taken away by the ruling class. 32. See Po Chii-i, op. c i t . , chiian 6, pp.32-33. The translation of this poem i s from Howard S. Levy, Translations  From Po Chii-i*s Collected Works, Vol. 1. New Yorki Paragon Book Reprint Corp., 1971 ed., pp.37-38. The last l i n e of the poem refers to a story in the Tso Chuan \J^_ » The Marquis of Wei, Duke I l^'t§> S^] » was s o fond of cranes that he had them carried about in great officers* carriages. In the twelfth month of the second year of the reign period of Duke Min of Lu j^ J (661-659 B.C.), the people of T i [fl<J invaded Wei. Everyone said that the cranes should fight the enemy because they had a l l the revenues and dignities. See Ch«un-chiu Tso-chuan Chin-chu Chin-i [j|f^-#v.£ ^ yfyfi"f'i$j'!r Commentary by L i Tsung-t*ung .^^ j] • Taiwans Commercial Press, 1971 ed., p.217. 118 They pitied them for their remarkable diligence and their struggle to get out of destitution. In the third of his "Five Poems, in Miscellaneous Form", Wei describes the unequal distribution of labor and reward in his time. He lamented that the f r u i t s of hardworking people were so easily lavished upon the pleasures of the rich. Po Chii-i also wrote two poems which have a similar mood to this poem of Wei's, namely, "The 33 Red Thread Carpet" and "Liao-ling". To save space, I have only quoted Wei's poem heret A pair of mandarin ducks on spring s i l k . Were sewn by her through cold nights. Concentrating on the variegated color work, Her fingers passed over a million threads. In the r i c h and noble homes of Ch'ang-an, Where extravagant beauties are innumerable. This work of a hundred days sewing, Was used for only one day's dancing performance. The dance over, a new one must be sewn, Who notices the suffering seamsters ? 3 4 When we analyse the incidents which he mentions in the above poems, we find that Wei Ying-wu not only was a compassionate observer of people's suffering, but also 33. "The Red Thread Carpet" [£ifefL|$3and "Liao-l i n g " [<^&$J both are found i n Po Chii-i, op. c i t . , chiian 4, p.22. "Liao-ling" i s a kind of gauze. 34. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.3. Except for lines 1 and 8, the translation i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.97. that he was a capable and diligent administrator. In addition* Wei was also an honest and frugal o f f i c i a l . Therefore, whenever he was out of office, he encountered financial d i f f i c u l t y . Sometimes, he even had to cultivate land to earn his livelihood. Once, he statest "In my comings and goings, I am one with the common people. 35 I do nothing different from them." In order to l i v e t h r i f t i l y , Wei went to dwell in temples each time he was out of office. After his term of office as Prefect of Ch'u had expired, Wei stated that he could not return to his native 36 home in Tu-ling due to poverty. When Wei was released from his post as the Prefect of Su, i t was probably the same problem that forced him to l i v e in the Yung-ting Temple. While l i v i n g there, he was 37 forced to buy wine on credit, and rented land to cultivate in order to solve the problem of his family's livelihood. He states that although he had dreamed of returning to the 38 capital, he could not do so because of his poverty. 35. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, p.7, t i t l e d "In Response to Collator Ch'ang Tang"[^v $ ^ < % ] * 36. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, pp.8-9, t i t l e d "Sent to My Younger Brothers Tuan, Wu and Others at the Capital on This New Year's Day"[$< 0 if"% ff$ 4^4 $A f ] . 37. See CTS 3/7/Wei ying-wu 8, p.5, t i t l e d "Living in the Open Country" [f^J^] . 38. See Chapter I, p.49. 120 It was a very rare occurrence for a prefect of deputy class in the third degree such as Wei to be so poor after his retirement. Because of this, Hsia Ching-yen says 39 that Wei Ying-wu was a good and incorruptible o f f i c i a l . There i s also the praise of Hu Chen-hengt "The poem of Wang Chi statest 'There are guests discussing names and principles, But nobody comes to dun for the rent of my land.' 40 To r e t i r e in this manner is appropriate. The poem of T'ao Ch'ien statest •Hunger came and drove me out, ... (I) knocked at a door and fumbled for words' 4 1 To ret i r e in this manner is not easy. The poem of Po Lo-t'ien statest •Being in favour, I have been promoted three times, Though I have only been back at the capital for two years. There are savings from my emolument in my bag, 39. See Hsia Ching-yen [ J ^M ^ ] , "Tu'Wei Su-chou Chi' Cha-chi" {/f| l | 1 ^ j $ ' l t t 6 ] ' i n Wen-hsvieh I-ch«an , op. c i t . , no.257, 26/4/1959, p.8. 40. These two lines of wang Chi are found in his poem*"Tu Tso"[?|j 4"] . See CTS 1/8/Wang Chi [ i ' ^ J t P»6. 41. These two lines of T'ao are found in his poem "Begging for Pood"["|j/^-] . See T'ao Ch'ien, op. c i t . , p.116. The translation i s from Hightower, op. c i t . , p. 62. 121 42 With them I buy vacant land outside my garden* To resign in such a manner i s appropriate. The poem of Wei Ying-wu statesi 'Being a clumsy administrator, I am happy to be out of office. I leisurely begin to look after my livelihood.... For the time being, I rent two ch'ing of land, 43 And exhort my Juniors to plough.* To resign office] :in such a manner i s particularly d i f f i c u l t . From of old Wei and T'ao have been praised together, how could i t only be due to the style of their 44 poems?** (b) Wei*s P o l i t i c a l Opinions and His Positive Attitude From the f i r s t part of this chapter, we know that Wei was an industrious and honest o f f i c i a l . He was always concerned with the livelihood of the people and sympathized with those who were suffering. In addition to this we also know that Wei upheld the law s t r i c t l y . In this section, I am going to make a further account of the reasons, other than 42. These four lines of Po Chu-i are found in his poem MHsin-ch*ang Hsin-chu Shu-shih Ssu-shih Yiin Yin Chi Yuan Lang-chung Chang Po-shih"[$f <f ftfA't$ <® $4%fyf See Po Chu-i, op. c i t . , chuan 19, p.104. 43. For these four lines of Wei's poem see Chapter I, P. 49. , , 44. Hu Chen-hengf^)^^ ] , "T'an-ts'ung I " [ - f l L f ^ l » i n T'ang-yin Kuei Ch'ien [^ j? Shanghai.! Ku-tien Wen-hsueh Ch'u-pan-she [•^J^.jj' i f o i - t ] '  1 9 5 7 e d ' *  c h « a n 2 5 » p.221. ^ ^ 122 his straightforward personality* that Wei was so steadfast to his legal principles. This i s his positive p o l i t i c a l attitude. Wei mentions his high regard for principles in his one poems 45 A piece of jade in the rough of Mount Ching* Pien Ho 4 6 took i t to the court and dedicated i t to the king. The rough jade of Mount Ching did not request of Pien Ho to dedicate i t * Ho-shih did not dedicate i t for having received any favours. He only knew that the present was very precious* It i s needless to argue about his complete disinterestedness. I would rather keep silent about right and wrong* Does this principle s t i l l exist nowadays ? In order to present a detailed discussion* I here quote from the Han Fei Tzu the whole story concerning the content of this poems 45. Mount Ching [,$tj J-j] i s i n Nan-chang Subprefecture [A i f ||] i n Htt-Pe* (J • S e e Ghang Chung-hsin [jfc ^] and others, Hu-pei T'ung-chih [y j^|^t'^ jj^-]* T aiP ei» Ching-hua Shu-chu [df^-^JJ^ ] » 1 Q67 ed., chiian 8, p. 227. 46. Pien Ho[,/j\ sometimes i s also given as Ho-47. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.3. The f i f t h of the "Five Poems in Miscellaneous Form". 123 Once a man of Ch'u named Mr. Ho, having found a piece of jade matrix in the Ch'u Mountains, took i t to court and presented i t to King L i . King L i instructed the jeweler to examine i t , and the jeweler reported, "It is only a stone." The King, supposing that Ho was trying to deceive him, ordered that his l e f t foot be cut off in punishment. In time King L i passed away and King Wu came to the throne, and Ho once more took his matrix and presented i t to King Wu. King Wu ordered his jeweler to examine i t , and again the jeweler reported, "It i s only a stone." The King, supposing that Ho was trying to deceive him as well, ordered that his right foot be cut off. Hp, clasping the matrix to his breast, went to the foot of Ch'u Mountains, where he wept for three days and nights, and when a l l his tears were cried out, he wept blood in their place. The King, hearing of this, sent someone to question him. "Many people in the world have had their feet amputated why do you weep so piteously over i t ?" the man asked. He replied, "I do not grieve because my feet have been cut off. I grieve because a precious jewel i s dubbed a mere stone, and a man of integrity i s called a deceiver. This i s why I weep." The King then ordered the jeweler to cut and polish the matrix, and when he had done so a precious jewel emerged. Accordingly, i t was named "The Jade of Mr. Ho." 4 8 48. See Han F e i f j ^ ^ ] • "Ho-shih" {Jjffi ^ ] in Han Fei Tzu jjj }]» chiian 4,:ip.20. Ssu-pu Ts'ung-k'an  1st Ser., op. c i t . : -• The translation i s from Burton Watson, Han Fei  Tzu, p.80 in the Basic Writing of Mo Tzu, Hsiin Tzu and  Han Fei Tzu# New Yorki Columbia University Press, 1967 ed. 124 After giving this story, Han Fei, the great Legalist philosopher, preached the d i f f i c u l t y of convincing a ruler to accept the importance of legislations Rulers are always anxious to lay their hands on pearls and precious stones. Though Ho presented a matrix whose .true beauty was not yet apparent, he certainly did no harm to the ruler thereby; and yet he had to have both feet cut off before the real nature of his treasure was f i n a l l y recognized. This i s how hard i t i s to get a treasure acknowledged. Rulers nowadays are not nearly so anxious to get hold of laws and state policies as they are to get hold of Ho's jade, and they are concerned about putting a stop to the private evils and deceptions of the o f f i c i a l s and common people. Under these circums-tances, i f a man who truly understands the Way hopes to avoid punishment, his only resort i s simply not to present to the ruler any uncut jewels of wisdom and 49 statecraft. Han Fei then emphasized the importance of the legis-lation by saying thats If the ruler follows set policies, then the high mini-sters w i l l be unable to make arbitrary decisions, and those who are close to him w i l l not dare try to s e l l their influence. If the magistrates enforce the laws, then vagabonds w i l l have to return to their farm work and wandering knights w i l l be sent to the battlefield 50 where they belong to face the dangers of their profession. Wei gave a particular account on this story in his 49. Han Fei, op. c i t . , p. 2a. T n e translation i s from Watson, op. c i t . , p.81. 50. Han Fei, op. c i t . , p.20. The translation i s from Watson, op. c i t . , p.81 125 poem, obviously, he had a high regard for Han Fei*s idea of the value of the establishment of legislation i n a country. He paid great respect to Pien Ho, the central figure of this story, who, because he knew the present was very precious, took the matrix to the court without regard for the p e r i l to his own l i f e . Wei hints that most precious legislation should also be presented to the court and established with "complete disinterestedness." This reminds us of the incident in which Wei punished the cavalrymen. At that time, he wrote t "I have always upheld plain and honest administration, And you have preserved justice.... In carrying out our administration, we sought to use the scales of justice, But making decisions i s l i k e butting a fence." From these lines, we can see how Wei expresses his bravery in upholding "complete disinterestedness". Only because the government did not hold fast to the rules, i t was almost "like butting a fence". Hence, he bore a grudge against the government that did not uphold policies and use the law to control people who played the bully. Perhaps, l i k e Han Fei, he hoped those recalcitrant soldiers would be sent to the battlefield to guard the country instead of making trouble. He hated the influential people who made 51. See Chapter I, p. 24. 126 arbitrary decisions. At that time, some military governors ignored the lavs. They allowed their soldiers to run v i l d . For example, the Military Governor of Huai^hsi• [}<j| $]] , L i Chung-ch'en <|t, H ] simply led troops to rob merchants and t r a v e l e r s . 5 2 Wei realized that s t r i c t lavs were necessary for the govern-ment to prevent these people from doing e v i l . He said that he would rather keep silent on "right and wrong" because the proper "principle" did not exist, and right and wrong had no set standard to be measured against. In maintaining order as well as avoiding the spread of crime and e v i l i n the country, we can see that Wei's ideas were quite close to those of Legalism in his stress on legis-lation. Wei was disappointed in the government because i t t was unable to put legislation into practice when opposing recalcitrant people. He missed the prosperity of the past. He longed for a brighter futures Gloomy that mirror i n the case, As i t i s darkened by dust. What does i t s gleam resemble ? It i s as gloomy as the moon overshadowed by black clouds. The figured mirror i s made of precious metal from the south. 52. See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chuan 155, p.431. Shining together with i t s large sash. Now i t has but the name of a mirror. And only causes beauty and ugliness to become confused. A beautiful lady exhausts her true-heart, Hoping to reflect her beautiful face in i t . But to what avail, as she i s not a mirror-polisher, S3 She can but sigh in vain day after day. The mirror i n this poem is a metaphor which Wei uses for good governmental policy and standards, which have been rendered worthless through disuse (hence "darkened by dust"). The confusion of beauty and ugliness symbolizes the "right and wrong" which have no standard of judgement.. In the l a s t four lines Wei emphasizes his sincere wish to restore good governmental policy and standards. His efforts were in vain as he was not an influential o f f i c i a l among the ruling class. The beautiful lady i s also a metaphor designed to portray Wei's honest character. After the rebellion of An Lu-shan, the p o l i t i c a l situation was not very stable. The regional military governors were quite independent in their administration, and frequently did not obey the rules of the central government. Worse than that, they often paid no attention to the central government and refused to submit to taxation. In the biography 53. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.3, the f i r s t of the "Five Poems in Miscellaneous Form". 128 of L i Huai-hsien, ve can see the four arbitrary military governorsi L i Huai-hsienf/^ f ^ i ^ j , Hsiieh Sung[|| , T'ien Ch'eng-ssu [($ ?^f||]and Chang C h u n g - c h i h [ ' each of them controlled "several ten thousands of able-bodied soldiers,... Although they were called frontier vassals, 54 actually they were not the subjects of the emperor." The military governors sometimes fought with each other, and at other times proclaimed war with the central government. In order to maintain their military power, the central government and a l l the military governors had to recruit a large number of troops and increase taxes. Wei's own description of the situation was, "Taxes are heavy 55 due to military operations." In such circumstances, the burden on the people was very heavy. If there were any calamity such as flood or drought, i t would certainly increase the misfortune of the already suffering people. Their lives were very miserable. 5 6 When Wei was in Ch'u Prefecture, he wrote a poem describing what he saws 54. See Liu Hsii, op. cit.,chuan 143, p.409. 55. In his poem entitled "Sent to the Senior Secretary Wang." See Chapter II, p.73, footnote 39. 56. The above-mentioned p o l i t i c a l situation i s based on Han Kuo-p • an [ j f ^ llf-ff]* "Pang-chen Ko-chii te Hsing-ch'eng" [J5 & $ % fid » i n Sui T'ang Wu-tai Shih-kang f | y | £ ^ . Pekingt San-lien Shu-t»ien[^ f ^ ^ / l ],1962 ed., Chapter 8, Section 2, pp.191-193. 129 The inhabitants are destitute and scattered, and the villages look broad and empty. The flourishing trees are a l l broken and withered. I heave a long sigh in this pavilion. 57 My lamentation causes a cool breeze. . When Wei arrived in Chiang Prefecture, he included this description in a poems ... Originally the inhabitants here were happy with their lives, Why did they f i n a l l y flee from here ? In the bygone years there was a period of bad harvests, CO Back taxes have accumulated li k e an i s l e t . ... Even when he was Prefect of Su, he had " not yet 59 seen the people dwell in peace and comfort." Compared to the peaceful and prosperous times before the empire had been thrown into chaos, the livelihood of these 57. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, p.3, t i t l e d "Ascending the Prefectural Pavilion of Ch'u on the Day of Double-nine, I Sadly Remember the Ninth Day of Last Year When I Returned to the Banks of the Feng River Where I Attended the Party Given by Ts'ui, the Commissioner of Waterways, and My Younger Brothers"!^ Juitifr A ti & i l l 0 f l v'f Jl i f f{ # 58. See Chapter III, pp. 108-109. 59. See Chapter III, p.106. 130 days was truly piteous. Drinking Wine with an Old Villager His temples and eyebrows are as white as snow* but he i s s t i l l fond of wine. His words are honest and simple as the people of old. The young villagers were born in this chaotic period* When they hear our conversation about the previous reign* i t seems l i k e a dream to them. 6 0 The young villagers did not know the prosperity and peace of former times because they were so unfortunate as to be born i n a chaotic period. To them the happy l i f e of the previous reign was no more than a dream. Wei hoped that he could see harmony and success return to the empire. It would be a r e l i e f for him to find the common people happy once againt ... When w i l l the world be at peace* That I may find contentment farming with the 61 people." 60. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.8. 61. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.5, t i t l e d "Sent to My Younger Brothers When the Troops at the Capital Revolted" ftfy K^L%\j^i4^' T h e t r a n s l a t i o n i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.35. 131 But the matter did not come out as he wishedt The Cry of the Cuckoo On soaring trees dripping dew, tranquil summer nights, In south mountains the cuckoo cries out. Next door a widow, holding her child, sobs; 62 I can but toss and turn, when w i l l i t dawn ? The widow and the mournful cry of cuckoo evoke the distressing circumstances of the chaotic times. The men were conscripted into the army and many of them lost their l i v e s , leaving children and wives to struggle on alone. The cuckoo's cry which sounds l i k e 'pu-ju-kuei-ch'u'jjf ^rt f^J^] (*it would be better to come home') and the thought of i t s name 'tzu-kuei' [ 3" ^ {jjj] may remind her of the homonym 'tzu-kuei' ^ | 1 ' t n a t m e a n s 'you return'. Her sorrow was certainly increased on realizing that her husband, the child's father, cannot 'return'. The reason why he cannot return i s , of course, that he was k i l l e d i n warfare. Wei f e l t pity for these unfortunate people, he could not get to sleep. The last line i s actually an allegory. Wei uses i t to suggest that he was waiting for the brightness of peace. Then, he hoped, the suffering people he was concerned about might be able to find r e l i e f . 62. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.11, Except for the character 'Tzu-kuei' > which I have translated as cuckoo, the translation i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.121. 132 Wei blamed the s e l f i s h military governors for feathering their own nests, injuring the others, taking the frui t s of the people's t o i l , and making trouble for the whole country. Again, using an allegory, Wei cursed the crows for being s e l f i s h though they have traditionally been regarded as f i l i a l birds. The Crows Leading Their Fledglings The sun rises and shines on the eastern c i t y . The spring crows caw and their fledglings answer. The fledglings answer, but their feathers are s t i l l short. Their nest i s in the dense forest where the spring weather i s cold; They lead their fledglings to f l y in order to gather at the warmth of the eastern ci t y . Although the fledglings are not yet in f u l l feather, s t i l l they look with disdain upon the heights, They spread their wings to f l y but f a i l , and f a l l into the tangled weeds. Their father and mother f l y back and forth trying to lead them again. They c a l l up and down as they are afraid of eagles and hawks. Hey I You leaders of the fledgling crows, What are you so anxious about ? Why do you search every day for the eggs of sparrows 63 to feed your fledglings. 63. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, pp.2-3. 133 In the last line of the poem, Wei asks the crows why they are so s e l f i s h since they love only their own fledglings but injure the eggs of other birds. The crows symbolize the s e l f i s h oppressors, perhaps the egotistic military governors who injure others to benefit themselves. In the following poem, Wei gives a further description of this phenomenon* A Kite Usurps a Nest A wild magpie, a wild magpie makes a nest in the tops of a forest, A fierce kite that reli e s on force usurps the magpie's nest. It swallows the magpie's l i v e r and pecks i t s brain, It steals both food and dwelling yet i s free from harm. The phoenix with i t s beautiful colours i s the king of a l l the birds. If i t knows the kite does e v i l why doesn't i t , speak out ? A white sparrow-hawk and a wild harrior get the left-over flesh, They peck that rank smelling meat together and have no intention of driving the kite away. The piteous small birds scatter in a l l directions, Although there i s a dense forest, where can they l i v e ? 6 4 64. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9. i>7T. 134 The phoenix i s apparently the emperor, the birds of prey are the oppressive military governors and the small birds are the poor common people. Wei expresses his disappointment in the emperor for being unable to punish the egotistic oppressors who usurped whatever the common people had. Below is another poem in which Wei uses birds to symbolize certain peoples E v i l birds gather around an old house, They scream on the withered branches of the trees. In the twilight, they peep into the dwellers* room. Ev i l ghosts have come to meet with them. The dwellers can't sleep peacefully, They wish to attack them now. Aren't there any eagles and sparrow-hawks? But these birds of prey have already eaten their f i l l of flesh and are unwilling to f l y . They have ignored the regulation of chasing birds, And are uselessly raised with their lofty manner. They are ungrateful for the flesh that has been bestowed upon them. How are they any different than the e v i l owls on the c i t y w a l l s ? 6 5 65. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.3, the second poem of the "Five Poems in Miscellaneous Form". 135 It i s probable that the old house i s a metaphor which Wei uses for the T'ang empire. The e v i l birds symbolize the e v i l separatists who leered at the empire with covetous eyes, and planned military operations to pursue their private interests. The ghosts symbolize the foreign aggressors who sought the opportunity to invade the empire. The dwellers symbolize the loyal o f f i c i a l s and honest people who opposed the separatists and invaders. They put their hopes in certain military governors who outwardly looked l i k e the type of birds of prey that would drive out the e v i l birds. But unexpectedly, these apparently bold governors, who had been well provided with food and clothing, could do nothing against the rebels and invaders. They could only do harm to the common people. Therefore, Wei said that they are no different than the e v i l owls on the c i t y walls. Wei hoped the government would send honest men to guard the frontiers instead of these egotistic separatists. So, when he crossed Han-ku Pass, he sighedt "If there are no talented and honest men at the frontiers. To what avail are the metal walls and the 66 scalding moats?" 66. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 6, p.4, t i t l e d "On Crossing Han-ku Pass Ji, fljf ] . Han-ku Pass was i n Ling-pao sub-prefecture [<|^  »g ,||J which was under the jurisdiction of Shan Prefecture)}^ -jrjj during the T'ang dynasty. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chuan 6, pp.3-4. The metal walls and the scalding moatst metaphorically, an impregnable c i t y . 136 Wei also opposed those separatists who intended to dismember the empire. They recruited the common people to engage in wars, but sought only their own personal advantage. With this sort of situation as a background* Wei stressed that even heroes were downcast when they heard the sound of war-drums• The Song of War-drums The clouds r i s e where the Huai River meets the sea and assume a sorrowful appearance i n the twilight. 67 On the heights of Kuang-ling c i t y war-drums are beaten in the dark. The cold ra t t l e of these drums sounds l i k e the wind blowing over the frontiers. Suddenly, i t i s as i f the c i t y were ten thousand l i away from a l l communication, In a i l directions there i s no trace of man. The drums' sound i s also l i k e the barbarian 68 cavalry of the north crossing the Liao River, 67. In the f i r s t year of the T'ien-pao era (742-756), Yang P r e f e c t u r e f ' j ] w a s named Kuang-ling County [ f£J»-j^  ] and i t was renamed Yang Prefecture in the f i r s t year of the Ch• ien!-yuan\,era (758-760). See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chiian 40, p.167. 68. Liao River [Liao-shuij^?JC, sometimes known as Liao-ho,i^\V|"] flows from present Inner Mongolia through Liao-ning to the sea. See Ku Tsu-yii \)k\ JfL Jh~\» fu-shih  Fang-yii Chi-yao [^ -| jfe^.f.jfc]. Peking t Chung-hua Shu-chii Cf ^^/|) 1 » X955 ed., Vol.2, chiian 37, p. 1574. 137 With their horses that have.not yet grazed rearing-up and whinnying at the northern sky. Among the guests in the c i t y there are s t i l l 69 valiant warriors from Yen and Chao, But when they hear the r a t t l e of the war-drums, they become silent and completely dejected. How much more so the widowers and orphans who haven't even had their breakfast, And the widows who sob at night over their tax deadlines. 7 0 Under the extortionate tax policy of the egotistic military governors and the severe central government, bankruptcy was widespread. The wars between the separatists and the central government or among the separatists themselves in addition to causing a l o t of strong young men to lose their l i v e s , also l e f t behind many poor old men, helpless widows and starving orphans. But these poor people s t i l l had to pay heavy taxes. The sparseness of the population gave many places an appearance of desolation and emptiness as Wei saw when he 71 arrived i n Ch'u and Chiang Prefectures. Therefore, paying heed to their consciences, even brave heroes were dismayed, l e t alone the miserable people, when they heard the sound 69. The warriors from the states of Yen and were said to be brave and s k i l f u l fighters. 70. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, p.3. 71. See Chapter III, p.129. 138 of war-drums. From this poem, we can see that Wei expresses his strong objection to the s e l f i s h separatists who acted as warlords and engaged i n battle* He cursed this kind of war because i t only destroyed the society and injured his fellow-countrymen. But Wei did not object to war against foreign aggressors. On the contrary, he encouraged the fight to resist aggressors in order to unify the country. He reminded the government not to neglect military preparedness. He sighed with regret over the negligence of national defence during the reign of T'ang Hsiian-tsung» ... Talented and heroic men worked together and peaee prevailed throughout the country, 72 Since the tribes of Jung and I submitted from fear, the soldiers had never fought a battle. Because of good harvests, the taxes had not become a heavy burden, Rare and precious treasures were brought as tribute from far across the seas. When war arose, however, the c i v i l and military o f f i c i a l s were completely at a loss. 72. Jung[^] and I were tribes to the west and the east of China respectively. 139 After joy and pleasure had reached their peak* the condition of human affairs suddenly 73 changed. • • • The background of this poem was the period before and after the An Lu-shan rebellion. Wei describes how the Emperor Hsuan-tsung and his o f f i c i a l s , through their pleasure-seeking, neglected the national defence. As a result, the nation was thrown into anarchy. The poet certainly hoped that the government, taking a lesson from this incident, would pay attention to the defence forces. He always encouraged his friends to devote themselves to the defence of their countryt A heroic man should devote himself to his own country, He should oppose the enemy with the strength required to push over a mountain. What need to serve as a local o f f i c i a l , * And l e t one's hair grow white at the temples? In another poem he urges a militant attitude to 74. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 3, p.5, t i t l e d "Sent to Ch'ang Tang"[j§- fl >f] . • • • foreign aggressorst 73. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 10, pp.2-3, t i t l e d "The 140 I look forward to your return after having 75 destroyed the Hsiung-nu, Then you w i l l receive a golden seal big as 76 a peck to reward your merit. 77 When Wei passed Sui-yang where the hero Chang Hsun had died resisting the rebels* he wrote a long poem to praise Chang's martial s p i r i t . He blamed those opportunistic military officers who hesitated to cooperate with Chang to 78 put down the rebels and unify the country. Wei also had a firm attitude i n the matter of border disputes. Therefore* when he saw his friend the envoy Ch'ang Lu off to Tibet, he urged Ch'ang to recover the lost territory and not to shrink from shouldering such heavy responsibilities* 75. Hsiung-nuCi^f .^3 * tribes in northern China. 76. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, p.14, t i t l e d "Seeing Sun Cheng off to Yun-chung"['<^d§> t%L At'IT lf] • Yun-chung Subpre-fecture was under the jurisdiction of Ytin Prefecture[o^ <H ] during the T'ang dynasty. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 14, p.13. 77. Sui-yang [ f f f f^ Jwas under the jurisdiction of Sung P r e f e c t u r e ^ cjfj ] in T'ang times. See L i Chi-fu, op. c i t . , chiian 7, pp.4-5. 78. For Wei's poem on this incident see CTS 3/7/ Wei Ying-wu 6, p.11, t i t l e d "Deep Feelings at Sui-yang £ J|J 141 79 Seeing off Censor Ch'ang (Lu) Who Was Again Being Sent as Imperial Envoy to Tibet After coming back to report to the throne on your ten thousand l i journey. You are again entrusted with an imperial mandate to be carried to the Tibetan vassal. Originally a young scholar engaging i n li t e r a r y pursuits, Now you mount a horse to try to quiet the smoke and dust. Traveling and lodging at the frontier gates and along rivers you w i l l encounter evening rain. In the spring ploughing near the border barricades you w i l l recognize many of our former countrymen. You should recover our lost territory on this t r i p , Don't resign your position in spite of the constant comings and goings through the dusty frontier. As for Wei himself, he was personally dedicated to the military policies that would bring advantage to the country 79. The character Lu [J^O i s not given in the CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 4, p.9, but i t appears in the t i t l e - l i s t of the collected poems of Wei in other editions. For example, Ssu-pu Pei-yao ed., op. c i t . , chuan 4, p.3. The record of Ch'ang Lu[ (^ jjjp ] being an envoy to Tibet appears twice in the T'ang Shu, i.e. in the second and fourth years of the Chien-chung era. See Liu Hsu, op. c i t . , chuan 196-hsia ("f*)» pp.550-551. ' 142 and the people. "One day, I think I ' l l give up writing for a military career, RO Since this troubled time arouses my feelings." The reason for'his thinking of giving up writing for a military career was that he wanted to defend his country and get r i d of oppression and calamity. Wei frequently was quite disappointed that he could not find an opportunity to devote himself to military affa i r s . Shooting Pheasant Riding a horse I go up the eastern h i l l , The morning sun shines on the uncultivated f i e l d s . There a pair of pheasants f l y up, I swivel to shoot them and quickly whip my horse to turn around. Although I am unable to hit the target with every shot. My accomplishment may be able to cause a smile of approval. The bird's feathers are ruffled, i t s beautiful breast broken. Its loose head hangs down beside my embroidered sheath. 80. See Chapter II, p.88 143 I merely rely on this activity to ease my discom-fort at having been sent so far from the capital. It i s not that I want to imitate young people. I heave a long sigh as I put the bow in i t s case, Thereupon, I remember when I was stationed on 81 the outskirts of Pa-ling c i t y . The above poem was written during his government service in the outer provinces. Wei states that he could only shoot pheasants instead of leading troops to fight with the enemy. He recalled the time when he was a palace guard on the outskirts of Pa-ling c i t y . Although he was a military man at that time, he never had the opportunity to fight for his country. How much less so now, when he had taken a post, in the south? Therefore, he could only express his grief at the disuse of his military talents. After he retired from office, he wrotet « • • . Chasing rabbits up to the h i l l , Catching f i s h along the red earth stream. I s t i l l sing in high s p i r i t s , And am accustomed to a meagre li v i n g , having to 82 buy wine on credit. 81. CTS 3/7/Wei Yino-wu 8, p.10. 82. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.5, t i t l e d "Living in the Open Country" [fjjfc] . The translation of the last l i n e i s from Nielson, op. c i t . . p.168. 144 Even at this time he was s t i l l busily engaged in hunting. Chasing rabbits and catching f i s h as he sang "in high s p i r i t s " to show his refusal to regard himself as worthless. (c) Wei's Negative Attitude From the beginning of this chapter, we have seen that in his early years, Wei was an active young man. He had always worked very hard i n of f i c e . He also highly esteemed the law. His attitude towards legislation was quite close to that of the Legalists. But in early China, beginning from Han times, there was almost no aspect of scholars' lives into which Confucianism had not penetrated. Wei himself confesses that he had "studied the knowledge of the Tsou-lu 83 school" (i.e. orthodox Confucianism). Certainly, his thought frequently was influenced by Confucianism, either intentionally or unintentionally. His poem "Planting Melons" is a good example of this influences Planting Melons Following my natural disposition, I just behave carelessly, And am particularly heedless i n managing my livelihood. This year I learned to plant melons, 83. See Chapter II, p.88. 145 However, my garden i s mostly f i l l e d with weeds. Although a l l the plants equally shared rain and dew. My melon-seedlings were particularly luxuriant. Due to the shortness of the spring. The season slipped away before I was able to hoe in time. The farmers laugh at me for having wasted my efforts, As the days and nights proceed, my hopes grow slimmer. Truly, this i s not our business, 84 Just l e t me study the books of the ancients. Wei's view of husbandry was certainly influenced by Confucianism. In the Analects of Confucius, we can see how Confucius expresses his attitude towards husbandry! Fan Ch'ih requested to be taught husbandry. The Master said, "I am not so good for that as an old husbandman." He requested also to be taught gardening, and was answered, "I am not so good for that as an old gardener." Fan Ch'ih having gone out, the Master said, "A small man, indeed, i s Fan HsuI "If a superior love propriety, the people w i l l not dare not to be reverent. If he love righteousness, the people w i l l not dare not to submit to his example. If he love good fai t h , the people w i l l not dare not to be sincere. Now, when these things obtain, the people 84. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.8. 146 from a l l quarters w i l l come to him, bearing their children on their backs;—what need has he of a 85 knowledge of husbandry?" Mencius, the famous successor of the Confucian school, also saidt "Some labor with their minds, and some labor with their strength. Those who labor with their minds govern others; those who labor with their strength are governed by others. Those who are governed by others support them; those who govern others are supported by them." This i s a principle universally recognized. 8 6 Confucians disesteem labor and regard the labouring classes as unimportant. They esteem only the intelligentsia which has been created by them. With this kind of Confucian doctrine, we can realize why Wei regarded husbandry as not being his business. Apparently, he had unintentionally accepted the viewpoint of Confucianism concerning this matter^ although this poem i s quite possibly open to a more humorous interpretation. Wei might well be laughing at himself, together with the farmers, for his incompetence and inexperience* in farming. 85. See "Tzu Lu Ti-shih-san"[ j- ? ] » 'Lnn Yii  Chi-chu, chiian 7, in Ssu-shu Chi-chu, op. c i t . , p.117. The translation i s from James Legge, The Four Books. Shanghait The Chinese Book Company, 1930 ed., p.177. 86. See "T#eng Wen-kung Chang-chii Shang" f$|j^ -k^ c^  i j J: ] , Meng Tzu Chi-chu [J. % $/fil# chiian 5, in Ssu-shu Chi-chu, op. c i t . , p.213. The translation i s from Legge, The Four Books, op. c i t . , p.627. 147 It seems, nevertheless, that Wei had come to an awareness that this concept was incorrect in his later days. So he was able to say that, "In my comings and goings, I am one with the common people, I do nothing different from 87 them." On another occasion, he rented a piece of land to 88 cultivate with his juniors. According to the ideas of Confucius, when a man meets with oppression, he must not try to revolt against the ruling authority even i f that authority i s unjust. Otherwise, he w i l l be regarded as a so-called 'rebellious statesman and bad son* [luan-ch'en tzei-tzu Under such conditions, the socially acceptable path for him to take i s to retreat and not try to get involved with social reforms. This idea of escapism can be seen in the following maxims quoted from Analects of Confuciusi The Master said, "My doctrines make no way, I 89 w i l l get upon a raf t , and float about on the sea...." The Master said, "With sincere faith he unites the love of learning} holding firm to death, he is perfecting the excellence of his course. "Such a one w i l l not enter a tottering state, nor dwell in a disorganized one. When right principles of government prevail in the kingdom, he w i l l show 87. See Chapter III, p.119. 88. See Chapter I, p.49. 89. See "Kung-yeh Ch'ang Ti-wu" [/^  ) ^ j£] , Lun Yu Chi-chu, op. c i t . , chiian 3, p. 66. The translation is from Legge, The Four Books, op. c i t . , p.50. 148 himself; when they are prostrated, he w i l l Keep 90 concealed ...." As for Mencius, although he sanctioned the right to replace a leader under certain circumstances on the one hand; on the other hand, he had the idea of escapism toot The king Seuen of Ts fe asked about the office of chief ministers. Mencius said, "Which chief ministers i s your majesty asking about?" "Are there differences among them?" inquired the king. "There are," was the reply. "There are the chief ministers who are noble and relatives of the prince, and there are those who are of a different surname." The king said, "I beg to ask about the chief ministers who are noble and relatives of the prince." Mencius answered, "If the prince have great faults, they ought to remonstrate with him, and i f he do not l i s t e n to them after they have done so again and again, they ought to dethrone him." ... he then begged to ask about chief ministers who were of a different surname from the prince. Mencius said, "When the prince has faults, they ought to remonstrate with him, and i f he do not li s t e n to them after they have done this again and again, they ought to leave the s t a t e . " 9 1 "...When the men of antiquity realized their wishes, benefits were conferred by them on the people. If they did not realize their wishes, they cultivated 90. See "T'ai-pe Ti-pa"[|S $j $f 'V i in Lun Yii Chi- chu, op. c i t . , chiian 4, p.88. The translation i s from Legge, The Four Books, op. c i t . , p.102. 91. See "Wan-chang Chang-chii'Hsia" [j| ^ n] ^ ] i n Meng Tzu Chi-chu, op. c i t . , chiian 10, p. 272. The translation i s from Legge, The Four Books, op. c i t . , pp.847-848. 149 their personal character, and became illust r i o u s i n the world. If poor, they attended to their own virtue in solitude; i f advanced to dignity, they made the 92 whole empire virtuous as well." What the Confucians plan to do when their wishes are obstructed i s 'to get upon a raft and flo a t about:.on the sea', 'keep concealed*,'leave the state* or •attend to their own virtue in solitude*. They intend to avoid real l i f e and keep out of society. The Confucian idea of escapism must also have influenced Wei, since, as we have seen, when Wei failed i n his p o l i t i c a l a c t i v i t i e s he went to l i v e in seclusion. In addition, Wei admired the great poet of the Six Dynasties T'ao Yuan—ming who lived in a quiet haven in the time of his retirement. His predilection for reclusion must have been strengthened by T*ao's example. Wei frequently mentions T'ao in his poems. Occasionally he wrote poems expressly to imitate T'ao's poetry. We have already seen one 93 such poem entitled "In Imitation of T'ao P'eng-tse" in chapter II. Another i s "In Imitation of T'ao's Style on the Occasion of Drinking Wine with Young Friends in the Country F i e l d s . " 9 4 In the poem "To My Friends While at the West Study 92. See "Chin-hsin Chang-chu Shang"[-^ '<T-|h{J X ] » Meng Tzu Chi-chu, op. c i t . , chiian 13, p.297. The translation i s from Legge, The Four Books, op. c i t . , pp.939-940. 93. See Chapter II, p.67. 94. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 1, p.4. 150 on the Feng River", he statest "Like T'ao I have resigned from office, 95 Imitating Chu I gather firewood." In another poem t i t l e d "Eastern Suburbs", he mentionsi "Eventually I w i l l resign and here build a hut, That this emulation of T'ao may truly be r e a l i z e d . " 9 6 Accepting the Confucian concept on the one hand, and being influenced by the character of T'ao on the other, Wei regarded reelusion as the best way to escape from trouble. As a result, although his attitude was positive at times, there were other times when the negative idea of retirement gained precedence in his mind. There were also times when he f e l t that being such a lowly o f f i c i a l prevented him from serving the people according to his aspirations. In such a position, he could only help the ruler to collect taxes, from the suffering people. Meanwhile, he probably thought that reelusion would be the best way to get away from these d i f f i c u l t i e s ! 95. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p.8. The Translation i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.29. Chu refers to Chu Mai-ch'en ll. ] of the Han dynasty. Chu was very poor before he served as an o f f i c i a l . He earned his l i v i n g by gathering and selling firewood. See Pan Ku (fjj , Han Shu[y|f ^ ] . Hongkong! Wen-hsiieh Yen-chiu-she£^,|^#^ ^"iti » 1959 chiian 64, p. 229. 96. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 7, p.9. The translation i s from Nielson, op. c i t . , p.148. 151 • « • If I stick too fast to the rules, the people's condition w i l l be heart-rending, If I am too lenient, I w i l l get myself into trouble. Day and night, I plan to beat a retreat. When I go outside, I always gaze at the mountains of home. If you feel so too, We had better go back hand in hand." I would rather go out of office than dun the people for payment of their taxes, Late in this year, I may reti r e to country fields...."98. "Governing this d i s t r i c t i s contrary to my aspiration, Forcing myself to take this post, I feel ashamed 99 towards the gentlemen of former days...." This escapism of Wei's was rather negative. By withdrawing in such a way, he cut himself off from the masses, 97. See Chapter I, pp.34-35. 98. "In Response to Ts'ui, the Commissioner of Waterways". See Chapter III, p.105, footnote 11. 99. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.8, t i t l e d "Planting Willows at West Stream"[Jfr y$ $f 152 He failed to bring any advantage to himself, the people and his country. But in a l l justice to the poet, he was at least much better than those avaricious government o f f i c i a l s who injured others to benefit themselves. The period in his later l i f e when Wei was sent out to take up provincial posts was probably the time of his deep involvement with the alchemical Taoists. He evidently thought to calm himself by following the ideas of Taoism. Taoists talk much of freedom of thought and action, but i t is a freedom which ignores or transcends the social order. As for alchemical Taoists, they further imagine that through certain practices of asceticism or drug-taking, one can become an immortal, able to transcend this world L and coexist with heaven and earth. In addition, Taoism was highly popular throughout the T*ang dynasty. One of the important reasons for this trend was that L i Erh j|] , who was known, as Lao Tzu arid was a great philosopher of Taoism, had the same surname as the imperial family of the T'ang dynasty. T'ang Kao-tsung[/^ JJQ ^3 canonized Lao Tzu with the t i t l e of 'T'ai-shang Hsiian-yiian Huang-ti* [A^ X A>*i.<^~\ • Later* T'ang Hsuan-tsung established Ch'ung-hsiian Kuan 'C ' f ' f ] for the purpose of studying the works of Taoism such as Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, Wen Tzu, and Lieh Tzu. He gave the t i t l e known as 'Hsiian-hsiieh Po-shih*C*^^ £§" to those who were specialists in the classics of Taoism. During the T'ang era, there were at least six emperors who were enthuslatic about Taoism and 153 died because of talcing drugs prescribed for them by alchemical Taoists. They were T'ai-tsung fA^^] » Hsien-tsung [ <t| '£ ] , Mu-tsung 'j? ] , Ching-tsung [jH^[? ] » Wu-tsung [-^'jpand Hsiian-tsung ['J, ^] , l t ) 0 Emperor Hsiian-tsung «J? ] was himself a devotee of the gods of popular Taoism. Wei mentions such acti v i t i e s on the part of Hsiian-tsung in one of his poems t Don't you see, the K'ai-yiian era was so f u l l of the c i v i l i z i n g virtues that the emperor 'loosened his robe' (ruled indirectly, passively). He was bored with s i t t i n g on the throne and granting audiences to a l l comers. He went to the holy mountains to inquire into the Way and request the spiritual forefather to appear. Then he bathed in the Hua-ch'ing Palace Pool accumulating auspicious omens in great number.101 • • • Under the great influence of the emperors, many 100. See Chao I |[] , "T'ang Chu-ti To Erh Tan-Y * ° "Dtit^ j If-^^l *» Nien-erh-shih Cha-chi[-# ^  iJ]4Q-Peking« Chung-hua Shu-chii [(j? j$f ^J^Q j» 1963 ed., chiian 19, pp. 361-363. 101. "The Song of Mount L i " . See Chapter III, p.139, footnote 73. 154 princesses and imperial concubines retired from palace l i f e to become Taoist nuns. There were also instances of prominent o f f i c i a l s who attempted to become Taoists and seek immortality. The famous poets Ho Chih-changp^ fyf}.^'] > L i Po (Q\ 1 0 2 and, the prime minister in the reign of Wu-tsung, L i Te-yii [/|~ fjf^lhlare examples in p o i n t . 1 0 3 Recognizing the strength of such trends and the lack of success Wei met with in his p o l i t i c a l career, we should not be surprised to find that the poet was also deeply influenced by Taoism in his later l i f e . In his poem written on the occasion of seeing off an imperial concubine to become a Taoist nun, Wei shows his sympathy for the woman who had discarded her former statust Seeing an Imperial Concubine off to Become a Taoist Nun To discard imperial favour and search for immortality from fear of losing of her beauty. Without make-up on her face, she bids farewell to the emperor by standing at the court. 102. For the details concerning L i Po's relationship with Taoism see L i Chang-chih[/^^<J , Tao-chiao-t'u te  Shih-ien L i Po Chi Ch'i T^ung-k'u [^ .^ it $ i$ titiJ-Afo MacaoJ Wen-chi Shu-tien [J^ f/f/f 3 # 1939 ed., Chapters 2-3 , pp.19-43. 103. This description of Taoism during the T'ang dynasty i s based on Fu Ch*in-chia[4^ ^})$C\ , Tao-chiao-shih  K a i - l u n [ $ J [ K ^ J ^ j 0 ^ « Shanghai! Commercial Press, 1934 ed., Chapter 11 , pp.65-66. 155 She intends to preserve a youthful appearance forever by depending on the e l i x i r , Her precious mirror need not be used for making up the sloping eyebrows any more. The princess helps her to put the ornamental head-dress aside, The emperor looks at her as she puts on a Taoist's hat. Hitherto, a l l the imperial concubines envied each other, But whenever they talk about Yao-t'ai, their tears 104 always f a l l in great number. Wei declares that the other concubines also expressed their sympathy for her instead of expressing jealousy. In attributing to the concubine a certain reluctance to become a Taoist, Wei reveals that he apparently did not believe the absurd theories of the alchemical Taoists when he wrote this poem. It was probably written in his earlier years when he took the post of director i n the Department of Merits at the Capital, Ch'ang-an. When Wei went off to a retreat on the bank of the 104. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 10, p.8. Yao-t'ai [f^ 1 t h e real" 8 o f t h e immortals. 156 Feng River, 1 0 ^ he mentioned reading the book of Lao Tzu, but this description did not yet include any of the superstition of the alchemical Taoists. Staying at the Suburbs on This Spring Day, I Send This Poem to Chi Chung-fu, the Chief Clerk of Wan-nien, (Yuan) 1 0 6 Wei, the Chief Clerk of San-yuan, Hsia-hou Shen, the Collator A bird in the valley occasionally breaks forth twittering. 105. From the t i t l e of the following poem, we know that Wei wrote this poem to Chi Chung-fu and others when Chi was the Chief Clerk of Wan-nien Subprefecture. According to an a r t i c l e of Ling-hu Ch'u, Chi took up the post as the Chief Clerk of Wan-nien around the early years of the Chien-chung era (780-784). See Ling-hu Ch'u yang-shen Hsin Miao-pei"[# % f l f / f^jpin Ch'in-ting  Ch'uan T'ang Wen, op. c i t . , chiian 543, p.6988. 106. Yuan T^jl i s missing before the characters Shao-fu[«J/j^] in CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 2, p. 11, but i t appears in the t i t l e - l i s t of the collected poems of Wei in other editions. For example, Ssu-pu Pei-yao ed, op. c i t . , chiian 2, p.3. Yuan Wei was a friend of Wei. His serving as the Chief Clerk of San-yiian has been recorded in Yuan-he Hsing-tsuan, op. c i t . , chiian 4, p. 3, also Ts'en Chung-mien ^ j 2 , Tu Ch'uan T'ang Shih Cha-chi j>f|? ^ V J H f tfj(Qin T'anq-jen Hanq-ti ^ t f A j f {^4$J. P e k i n9"» Chung-hua Shu-chii [(f Jr^/fo ] , 1962 ed., p.220. In the collected poems of Wei, there i s another poem which expresses his relationship with Yuan Wei. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 5, pp.2-3, t i t l e d "A Night Feast for Yuan Wei on His Passing Lo-yang"[^J -/jj i^\^_y^~~(^ $J$(] • 157 A spring shower has passed over the f i e l d s . The light, warm morning breeze rustles through the grove, And early sun rays shine through the high window. Alone, I drink stream water, And recite from the book of Lao Tzu. At the capital, hustle bustle, 107 Who remembers this recluse? The fact that he mentions Taoist works indicates that at this period he was influenced by Taoist philosophy. The following poem i s a further example of this influence. Jade There i s a quintessence existing in heaven and earth. In i t s unadorned state, i t i s invaluable. When i t i s cut and polished to make mundane objects, 108 Its true nature i s spoiled before long. The jade i s invaluable when i t i s unadorned. Apparently, Wei f e l t that things in their natural state should remain so. He adopted this idea from Taoism. Lao Tzu emphasizes the importance of nature in the Tao Te Ching by saying that, 107. Except for the t i t l e and lines 1, 3,4 and 6, the translation of this poem follows Nielson, op. c i t . , p.88 108. CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p . l . 158 "The Way (models) on that which i s naturally so"Uf_jl v 1$ $ £ ] , 1 0 9 "Exhibit the unadorned and embrace the uncarved block" ft .110 Chuang Tzu, the other great philosopher of Taoism, elaborates a fable in the book Chuang Tzu to impress on us the importance of nature and the p e r i l of disrupting her. The emperor of the South Sea was called Shu [Brief], the emperor of the North Sea was called Hu [Sudden], and the emperor of the central region was called Hun-tun [Chaos]. Shu and Hu from time to time came together for a meeting in the territory of Hun-tun, and Hun-tun treated them very generously. Shu and Hu discussed how they could repay his kindness. " A l l men," they said, "have seven openings so they can see, hear, eat, and breathe. But Hun-tun alone doesn't have any, let's trying boring him some!" Every day they bored another hole, and on the seventh day Hun-tun d i e d . 1 1 1 Reflecting on the meaning of this fable, we see that Hun-tun's death was caused by the ignorance of his 109. See L i Erhpj: f| ] Tao Te C h i n g f ^ j ; . Commentary by Fang Chtieh-huei ^ ] . Taipei t Taiwan Shu-chii [ ^ y~f-jj}$] » 1961 ed., shang p'ien [J; 'JjJ] , chapter 25, p.49. The translation see Din Cheuk Lau'X^j )f$Jjif]» Lao Tzu Tao Te Ching. Baltimore! Penguin Books Ltd., 1963 ed., p.82, 110. See L i Erh, op. c i t . , shang p'ien, chapter 19, p.39. The translation see D. C. Lau, op. c i t . , p.75 111. See Chuang Chou, " F i t for Emperors and Kings" |T in Chuang Tzu, op. c i t . , nei p'ien, pp.115-116. The translation see Watson, The Complete Works of Chuang Tzu, op. c i t . , p.97. 159 true nature on the part of Shu and Hu. This i s also the thought behind Wei's lines when he says we spoil the natural beauty of jade by cutting and polishing i t . Later, when he took up provincial posts far from the capital* we notice that Wei became involved with alche-mical Taoists and read books concerning the methods of seeking immortalityt "With clear wine I cultivate my pure original nature* With alchemical books I show myself to be a Taoist f o l l o w e r . " 1 1 2 In addition to reading books* Wei also took the e l i x i r which was made according to the intructions of alchemical texts. By doing so* he imagined that he would be able to 113 l i v e forever with heaven and earth. Moreover* Wei wrote many poems eulogizing immortality 114 such as "Seeking to Become an Immortal", "The Song of Fairy 0 Lu Hua", 1 1 5 "The Song of the Fairy Princess", 1 1 6 112. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p.4, t i t l e d " The Western Study at the Prefecture" ^]^\» 113. Evidence that Wei took this kind of e l i x i r can be found in his poem "Taking the Huang-ching Herb"[/|f|^ See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 8, p. 5. 114. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, pp.4-5. 115. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9. p,5. 116. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, p.5. 160 "The Song of the Ma Ming-sheng's Encounter with a Fairy", 1 1 "The Song of the Fairy of Mount Yiian-t'ou" and so forth. We are moved to sympathize with Wei, who was overwhelmed by the oppressive social problems of the time. He found no way to f u l f i l l his ambitions and ideals. There-upon, he turned his back on society and rea l i t y and sought for something in which he could forget his disappointment. In such circumstances, he became involved with the supers-titions of the alchemical Taoists. But, no matter what the inducement was, to spend a l i f e time in search of the elusive vision of immortality was a tragic waste of talent. 117. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 9, pp.5-6. 118. See CTS 3/7/Wei Ying-wu 10, p.5. BIBLIOGRAPHY Chang Chung-hsin [jjMf **jf] and others. Hu-pei T'unq-chih l~vt/j tf-*JLJbl » 1 9 2 1 • Taipeit Ching-hua Shu-chu tfcJJF.-^ J?Q 3 » 1967 (repr.). Chao l[^ $j£j . 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