Poems of Meng Jiao
Presented to the Han Governor of the Southern Region
In former times, all under Heaven fell apart.
But lords knew which ministers were worthy.
When all leaves were shaken from the trees,
Men's true characters were revealed.
Armies marched high into the mountains,
Obscuring the sunlight with their dust.
With minds opened by the goddess' power,
They subdued the invading hordes.
Things have changed from then to now --
Fair manners and simplicity return.
Your Lordship governs his province so that
Chill valleys all return to spring.
Now war banners unfurl like red lightning.
Sword edges flash from bright scabbards.
What if the highest of spirits were to
Garrison the banks of Chu's rivers?
Overcast clouds suddenly part and
A single sunbeam shines out from afar.
One knows the old saying:
Mere suspicions do not reveal the truth.
I have the sense that this is a semi-official poem which was sent to this governor. Perhaps Meng Jiao's superiors sent orders to the governor and wished, through Meng Jiao's poetry, to send an additional subtle message of some kind. Meng Jiao's preferential treatment throughout his official career shows that his poetry was esteemed by the ruling class. It might even have been flattering to see that your superiors wrapped their concerns in the form of a famous poet's work, written especially for you. You might even hang it up where others could envy it.