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Analysis and comments on The River-Merchant's Wife: A Letter by Ezra Pound

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Comment 15 of 335, added on February 10th, 2008 at 12:13 PM.

this is a exclusive poem regarding the absence of one's lover. how
vulnerable a lover can be during the mature period. this poem also shows
that if we can't receive the authentic love in a proper time, repentence is
obvious. how a lover misses her lover is also illustrated here.

Shohag khan khulna from Bangladesh
Comment 14 of 335, added on June 5th, 2007 at 10:26 AM.

Most of the readers say this poem is translated from the Chinses poet Li
Po's ( Bai in Pinyin) work. Yes, there is something close to the story,
actually, Pound rewrote the story only. He had driven Li Bai away in his "
translation" if it is persistedly called. the line like " they hurt me, i
grew older" does not convey what Li Bai expressed. They stands for the
"couple yellow butterflies" flying in the beautiful garden. Their loving
dancing and one follows the other reminds the speaker of her husband who
has departed for business far away. Observing the butterflies and thinking
of her own condition hurts her feeling, evoke her missing her beloved. "I
grew older" literally means one's aged or becomes a senior. Here in Li
Bai's poem, the speaker hates that "time flies". thou it is not so long for
their departing, she suffers day and night from thinking her husband. not
"my Lord" as Pound's. it is worrying and missing and thinking and loving
that makes her seemingly "old".

willie from China
Comment 13 of 335, added on June 3rd, 2007 at 9:46 PM.

I just enjoyed teaching this poem in my literature class here in the
school. this poem is full of emotions, and a great way to teach imagery. we
had a great class analysis, and kids were eager to share their
interpretations with each other.

Wilson Cardoza from Ecuador
Comment 12 of 335, added on April 18th, 2007 at 3:25 AM.

when i was a little girl ,i have learned libai's original poem whose name
is 长干行.libai is one of the most famous chinese
poets,but i think His literary name was not Li Po.now ,i am preparing my
graduate paper ,and i choosse this poem as one of my topic.during the
reaserch,i found that ,even though pound's vesion does not exactly reflct
the original poem,it still touch me .

Linda from China
Comment 11 of 335, added on March 24th, 2006 at 7:32 AM.

This poem was a great example of Pound's work. It is a great achievement
and he remains one of my favorite poets.

Susan from United States
Comment 10 of 335, added on February 14th, 2006 at 5:10 AM.

the simplicity of this poem is the most touching element.it goes direct to
the readers heart. simple feelings but full of emotion.

sumona rahman from Bangladesh
Comment 9 of 335, added on October 16th, 2005 at 6:12 PM.

I am a schoar and translator of classical Chinese, so let me comment
briefly. Pound knew no Chinese. He worked from notes left by Ernest
Fenollosa, who also knew no Chinese, but did know some Japanese.
Fenollosa's notes were based on Japanese versions of the original Chinese
poem. Pound's translation is not always accurate, but is so beautiful for
its time, that it lives almost as an independent poem by Pound.

Geoff from United States
Comment 8 of 335, added on August 2nd, 2005 at 5:13 PM.

Last year in literature class, we read this poem in this translation and
another translation. They were both very different, but I guess that it
because it is so hard to translate from Chinese. Both translations had many
dissimilarities, but they both portrayed the same meaning.

This was one of my favorite poems that I have read in school. It is so rich
in emotion.

Mary Anne from United States
Comment 7 of 335, added on July 27th, 2005 at 9:45 PM.

It does say on the poem that this is a translation. However, does anyone
know for sure how accurate the translation is? When I researched Pound I
found that he was fascinated by chinese and endeavored to learn it, but I
don't know if he ever mastered it...and I have read some chinese literature
that seriously criticizes the way he handled those poems. I do know that he
made a lot of mistakes, and that he would create his own words if he didn't
understand what was written...so a lot of his translations are actually
kind of hybrids between his work and the work of the original poet. As far
as I understand, that is.

laurel from United States
Comment 6 of 335, added on May 31st, 2005 at 1:19 AM.

shouldn't you be doing your poems instead of typing up that description
found in the American Literature text book, ms. chou?

Jon from United States

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Information about The River-Merchant's Wife: A Letter

Poet: Ezra Pound
Poem: The River-Merchant's Wife: A Letter
Added: Feb 21 2003
Viewed: 398 times
Poem of the Day: Feb 12 2015

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