Poems of Meng Jiao
Singing with Rose Blossom
Immortal chance to write down a phoenix's words.
This flower blooming at seventy, twice a master.
Heaven's glory comes to earth in gathering rosy light.
Wind gently stirs the branches as she soars,
Her wand'ring flight fragrant 'round the Buddha.
Suddenly brocade waves are washed in new colors.
She's like a palace beauty, showing off her jewels.
In the end, this slender flower moves us all.
She most resembles a vineyard tended in Heaven.
Here is a very probable context. Meng Jiao and several other gentlemen are spending an evening with a professional flower girl. They probably pooled their money for this one as she is seventy years old and an acknowledged master of both song and pipa (or qin or se). None of this surprises me. What does surprise me is that the singing is mentioned in the same breath with the Buddha, Lord of Emptiness (空王). It is entirely possible that these gentlemen have spent the evening listening to a master sing sutras. That might explain the unusual structure of nine seven-character lines. And let's not forget, the title explicitly tells us that, in part, they all sang together.