Synopses & Reviews
A Zen-Taoist poetry classic, in a handsome Chinese-English format
This definitive translation of Han Shanand#8217;s poetry appears in a bilingual Chinese-English format. Included are extensive notes, a preface by renowned translator Red Pine, a findings list, and photographs of the cave and surrounding area where Han Shan (and#147;Cold Mountainand#8221;) lived.
Cold Mountain is one of the most revered poets in China. He was a Taoist/Buddhist hermit who begged for food at temples, often sang and drank with cowherds, and became an immortal figure in the history of Chinese literature and Zen. His poems were written twelve-hundred years ago on the rocks, trees, and temple walls of Chinaand#8217;s Tientai Mountains. This revised edition also includes poems by Han Shanand#8217;s colleagues, Pickup (Shih-te) and Big Stick (Feng-kan), translated here for the first time.
As Red Pine begins his Preface, and#147;If Chinaand#8217;s literary critics were put in charge of organizing a tea for their countryand#8217;s greatest poets of the past, Cold Mountain would not be on many invitation lists. Yet no other poet occupies the altars of Chinaand#8217;s temples and shines, where his statue often stands alongside immortals and bodhisattvas. He is equally revered in Korea and Japan. And when Jack Kerouac dedicated The Dharma Bums to him in 1958, Cold Mountain became the guardian angel of a generation of Westerners as well.and#8221;
Reviews of Red Pine's Collected Songs of Cold Mountain:
and#8221;The translatorand#8217;s preface describes his rendition of the life of Cold Mountain, offering an excellent historical and philosophical context for the simple yet profound poems attributed to the poet."and#151;Library Journal
and#147;These are poems one must taste fully and drink whole... The poems of Han-shan read like a journal or memoir, and they often work as Zen koans, challenging the mind to go beyond the words and reason.and#8221;and#151;Parabola
and#147;Red Pine... has given us the first full collection of Han Shanand#8217;s songs in an idiom that is clear, graceful, and neutral enough to last... His translations are accurate and mirror the music of the originals... The Collected Songs of Cold Mountain is a considerable performance and a truly valuable book. Thanks to Copper Canyon's high standards of bookmaking, it is beautiful to hold and behold; thanks to Red Pineand#8217;s care, it will survive as the definitive text of Han Shan in English for many years. It belongs on the shelf of everyone with an interest in poetry and... should be opened often."and#151;The Bloomsbury Review
and#147;An exquisite publication that captures the Taoist practice of passionate attention, of being still inside and relaxed in the comforts and discomforts around you, going nowhere else... We discover this in the poetand#8217;s vision and spirit, in the precision and balance of the translatorand#8217;s scholarship and heart, and in the elegant wilderness of the bookmakerand#8217;s art around them. On every level this is a beautiful book.and#8221;and#151;Judgesand#8217; comments on awarding the WESTAF Award in Translation
and#147;Cold Mountainand#8217;s colloquial poetry...sound like inspired rapsand#151;marvelously direct, with skips, jumps, verbal nudges and abrupt revelations... The volume is beautifully produced, with a long and careful introduction... This is an indispensable book.and#8221;and#151;The Berkeley Monthly
and#147;More than anyone else, Red Pine has made [Han Shanand#8217;s] spontaneous poems accessible to Western readers... In this new, expanded edition, invaluable notes and an extensive new critical preface provide a contextual awareness, not just for the poems, but for their sources in Buddhist and Confucian culture.and#8221;and#151;Inquiring Mind
Red Pine is one of the worldand#8217;s leading translators of Chinese literary and religious texts. His other translations include Lao-tzuand#8217;s Taoteching (isbn 9781556592904) and Poems of the Masters: Chinaand#8217;s Classic Anthology of Tand#8217;ang and Sung Dynasty Verse (isbn 9781556591952).
This authoritative, bilingual edition represents the first time the entirety of Cold Mountain's poetry has been translated into English.
These translations were originally published by Copper Canyon Press nearly twenty years ago. Now, significantly revised and expanded, the collection also includes a new preface by the translator, Red Pine, whose accompanying notes are at once scholarly, accessible, and entertaining. Also included for the first time are poems by two of Cold Mountain's colleagues.
Legendary for his clarity, directness, and lack of pretension, the eight-century hermit-poet Cold Mountain (Han Shan) is a major figure in the history of Chinese literature and has been a profound influence on writers and readers worldwide. Writers such as Charles Frazier and Gary Snyder studied his poetry, and Jack Kerouac's Dharma Bums is dedicated "to Han Shan."
storied cliffs were the fortune I cast
bird trails beyond human tracks
what surrounds my yard
white clouds nesting dark rocks
I've lived here quite a few years
and always seen the spring-water change
tell those people with tripods and bells
empty names are no damn good
someone sits in a mountain gorge
cloud robe sunset tassels
handful of fragrances he'd share
the road is long and hard
regretful and doubtful
old and unaccomplished
the crowd calls him crippled
he stands alone steadfast
my place is on Cold Mountain
perched on a cliff beyond the circuit of affliction
images leave no trace when they vanish
I roam the whole galaxy from here
lights and shadows flash across my mind
not one dharma comes before me
since I found the magic pearl
I can go anywhere everywhere it's perfect
A mountain man lives under thatch
before his gate carts and horses are rare
the forest is quiet but partial to birds
the streams are wide and home to fish
with his son he picks wild fruit
with his wife he hoes between rocks
what does he have at home
a shelf full of nothing but books
Revised edition of Cold Mountain's poetry by the acclaimed translator of the Tao Te Ching.
Poetry. Asian Studies. Translated by Red Pine. These poems were written twelve-hundred years ago on the rocks, trees, and temple walls of China's Tientai Mountains. The poet Han Shan (Cold Mountain), a Taoist/Buddhist hermit who begged for food at temples, often sang and drank with cowherds, and became an immortal figure in the history of Chinese literature and Zen. This authoritative, bilingual edition significantly revises and expands upon a version that originally appeared in 1983. It presents all of Cold Mountain's surviving poems - as well as poems by two of his colleagues, Big Stick (Feng-kan) and Pickup (Shih-te) - and includes a new introduction, comprehensive notes, and photographs of the cave and surrounding area where Cold Mountain lived.
The authoritative, bilingual edition of Cold Mountain's revered Zen-Taoist poetry by the acclaimed translator of Lao-tzu's Taoteching.
An essential volume.