Poems of Meng Jiao
Autumn Evening in a Hovel. My Feelings.
Lying cold, between endless dreams,
I hear autumn sourly depart.
Wind beats high branches against the low
And thousands of leaves cry out.
Shallow wells without enough to drink.
Lean fields abandoned by the plough.
Modern society is unlike the ancient.
Too many words falling on everyone's frivolous ears.
In an eight line poem, the pattern is often two lines of immediate perception, four lines of playing with ideas, two more lines of perception, now recast by the play of ideas. Meng Jiao is playing with that form here, twisting it, so that you think the mid-lines are perceptions. But they aren't. They're the play of ideas cast as perceptions. When you realize this, you find yourself working backwards from the end, going, "Oh... yeah...."