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Wang Wei was an artist par excellence, never losing sight of his creative talents in watercolor painting while he was writing poetry, thus deserving the praise of posterity in its saying that there was always a picture in his poems. A great lover of natural beauty and enjoyer of leisurely living in his county villa, he was also a devout Buddhist. His love of meditation of scenic beauty, and of pictorial art, is thoroughly reflected in his poetry, thus founding the school of nature poets. Before we examine his nature poetry, let us look at his ballads, which were extremely popular in his lifetime. Since is narrative poems written in the style of ballads were all carefully dated, three of his masterpieces were written before he was twenty-one. In him we see the key of the development of T’ang poetry as Wang Wei trained himself in his younger days as a narrative poet in conformity with the pervading tradition of the so-called new yüeh fu. He left this kind of composition for pure lyrics in the latter part of his life. Similarly, the trend of T’ang poets was first to seek liberation and training in yüeh fu and finally to outgrow this type. The following are among Wang Wei’s best loved shorter poems.
 送別 王維
 失題 王維
 終南別業 王維
 山居秋暝 王維
 竹里館 王維
 酬張少府 王維

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Wang Wei’s life was enriched by a younger contemporary whose poetry wa more varied and more romantic. Li Po (701?-762?), who was claimed as a native son by many different regions, was born in present-day Shantung Province. All his life a seeker of freedom and a lover of wine, he had joined various groups in living as a recluse. We have noted before that to Tu Fu, Li Po was one of the great Immortals in Wine Drinking. According to the T’ang dynastic History, he was, on one occasion, so completely drunken that he forgot all the basics of court manners and went so far as to order a commander of the imperial guard and a favorite of the emperor to remove his boots.
王維的生命因為後輩李白更富變化和浪漫氣息的詩作而豐富。李白(701?-762?)出生於今山東省,卻被很多地方歸為當地人。李白終其一生都是自由的追尋者、飲酒的愛好者,在他隱居的那段時間,參加過許多團體。我們先前曾提過對於杜甫來說,李白是飲中八仙之一。按照唐書的記載,有一次他醉得太徹底,忘了宮廷基本禮儀,竟然命令宮廷衛士和皇帝的寵臣(高力士)為他拖靴。
Even the unconventional Emperor Hsüan Tsung felt offended by this violation of etiquette and decreed his dismissal. Later, during the An Lu-shan rebellion, he joined the staff of an imperial prince who had been plotting for political independence, and after the collapse of that princely court, Li Po was sent into exile to the far southwest to the country of Yeh Lang. After his eventual parole, he died of intoxication on his way back to the capital. Around the life and death of Li Po so many stories were spun by posterity that probably not a single one was reliable, including the one saying that he lost his ife by plunging into the river in an attempt to grasp the reflected moon, which he felt was even more beautiful than the real one.

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Probably more than any single individual, Li Po was the epitome and summation of his age, spending his life variously as he did in running away from the crowd to the mountains and forests, in drinking to intoxication at wine shops and the imperial court, in practicing alchemy to attain physical immortality, and in wandering in scenic areas close to rivers and lakes. Distinctly different from his contemporaries who sought eagerly to elevate themselves in the official hierarchy by advertising their talents in poetry writing, Li Po persistently sang in praise of freedom.
安能蹙眉折腰事權貴,使我不得開心顏!

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  • hannahegg
  • 抱歉,我很少上來看,看到你留言已經是一個月後了……
    老師每年上課的標準都有些不同,以該班的平均程度為基準吧,所以我也不清楚老師今年對學生有什麼要求。
    另外,既然知道我是誰,直接寫email或者到系上來找我聊聊就好啦,
    一起修過課,沒什麼好見外的。
    祝學習順利。