Masters on Masterpieces of Song Lyrics

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Language: English
Publication Date: 03/2016
ISBN: 9787508533193

Table of Contents

A Bleak and Solemn Bugle Call in the Frontier – On the Pride of Fishermen by Fan Zhongyan
Two Lyrics of Zhang Xian
Lovers Would Grieve at Parting as of Old – Appreciating the Bells Ringing in the Rain by Liu Yong
Great Leisure in a Small Bower – Appreciation of Yan Shu’s Silk-washing Stream
A Different Understanding to Yan Jidao’s Renowned Couplet
Sighs of a Heartbroken Lyricist – On Riverside Daffodils by Yan Jidao
“It Is not the Singer’s Pain I Pity, but Few Are Those Who Understand the Song!” – Appreciating Yan Jidao’s Riverside Daffodils from a Broader Aspect
On Beautiful Lady Yu by Yan Jidao
The Masterpiece of a “Veteran Fox” – Appreciating Wang Anshi’s Fragrance of Laurel Branch: In Memory of the Ancient Capital
A Natural Expression of Emotion – About Ouyang Xiu’s Song of Hawthorn
Delineating Deep Love with a Blooming Brush – On the Green Jade Cup by He Zhu
A Masterpiece throughout the Ages – Charm of a Maiden Singer: Ode of Red Cliff by Su Shi
A Talented and Ambitious Lyricist – On Prelude to Six-state Melody by Zhang Xiaoxiang
Aesthetic Personality and Art Sublimed by Cosmic Consciousness – Appreciating Charm of a Maiden Singer: Passing Dongting by Zhang Xiaoxiang
Expressing Tenderness with Subtle Skills – Analysis on Li Qingzhao’s A Twig of Mume Blossoms
On Yue Fei’s Manifold Little Hills
The Lovers Part while Willow Twigs Caress the Stream – On Sovereign of Wine: Willows by Zhou Bangyan
Refine Diction, Polish Wording – On Zhou Bangyan’s Fragrance Filling the Hall: Summer
Thousands of Words Sealed at the Tongue Tip – On Phoenix Hairpin by Lu You
On Several Lyrics by Xin Qiji
On Xin Qiji’s Pure Serene Music
A Novel Lyric at a Farewell Feast – On Xin Qiji’s The River All Red
Depression Hidden in Delight – On Xin Qiji’s Partridge in the Sky
On Jiang Kui’s A Skyful of Joy
Analysis on Jiang Kui’s A Skyful of Joy
Sorrow Is a Dominant Theme – Opinions on the Lantern Festival Lyrics by Li Qingzhao, Liu Chenweng and Wang Yuanliang
An Elegy to the Life – On Courtyard Full of Fragrance by Xu Junbao’s Wife

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The Masterpiece of a “Veteran Fox”
– Appreciating Wang Anshi’s Fragrance of Laurel Branch: In Memory of the Ancient Capital
Zhang Bowei
Tune: Fragrance of Laurel Branch
In Memory of the Ancient Capital
I climb the height
And stretch my sight:
Late autumn just begins its gloomy time.
The ancient capital looks sublime.
The limpid river, beltlike, flows a thousand miles;
Emerald peaks on peaks tower in piles.
In the declining sun sails come and go;
Against west wind wineshop streamers flutter high and low.
The painted boat
In cloud afloat,
Like stars in Silver River egrets fly.
What a picture before the eye!
The days gone by
Saw people in opulence vie.
Alas! Shame on shame came under the walls,
In palace halls.
Leaning on rails, in vain I utter sighs
Over ancient kingdoms’ fall and rise.
The running water saw the Six Dynasties pass,
But I see only chilly mist and withered grass.
Even now and again
The songstresses still sing
The song composed in vain
By a captive king.
Fragrance of Laurel Branch: In Memory of the Ancient Capital is a famous work written by Wang Anshi in Jinling (Today’s Nanjing, Jiangsu province).
Among the 30-odd lyrics on Jinling composed simultaneously by his contemporary noted lyricists, Wang Anshi’s work is the uncontroversial No. 1. “Wang is really like a veteran fox,” Su Shi praised him sincerely, with great admiration to Wang’s talents showed in this lyric. It is well known that Wang was equally matched with Su in essays and poems, but less competent in lyrics. But, when this one appeared, Su showed great respect to Wang’s talent in lyrics. So, let’s find out the reason for that.
The lyric consists of two stanzas: the first one on the scenery of Jinling, and the second on the memories of and emotion to the ancient capital.
Jinling, the capital for six historical dynasties, had been a prosperous place in southern China. Autumn, as a bleak and chilly season, has been arousing sighs of scholars since ancient times in China. In the lyric, Wang started the first stanza with “I climb the height/And stretch my sight:/Late autumn just begins its gloomy time. /The ancient capital looks sublime” to indicate the time, place and his mood in the season. Next come “the limpid river, beltlike, flows a thousand miles” to describe the majesty of the Yangtze River, and “emerald peaks on peaks tower in piles” to delineate the static distant scenery. Then the lines “in the declining sun sails come and go; against west wind wineshop streamers flutter high and low” depict the dynamic nearby views. On the Qinhuai River there were painted boats, hustling and bustling at a dazzling night. The brilliant colors, the flying birds and the floating clouds are vivified in lines “the painted boat/In cloud afloat, / Like stars in Silver River egrets fly. /What a picture before the eye!” All these are views from “I climb the height/And stretch my sight.” The “declining sun” and “west wind” usher in the sighs in the second stanza.

 Sample pages of Masters on Masterpieces of Song Lyrics (ISBN:9787508533193)
Sample pages of Masters on Masterpieces of Song Lyrics (ISBN:9787508533193)
Sample pages of Masters on Masterpieces of Song Lyrics (ISBN:9787508533193)

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Masters on Masterpieces of Song Lyrics
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