Thinking About Love

In this book we invite you into the immense and alluring world of Chinese love poetry. Hundreds of love poems from almost every era of Chinese history still exist; we have decided to present twenty-five of them to you, complete with fresh translations and line-by-line analysis. Among these twenty-five poems are some of the most beloved poems in Chinese history; others are probably familiar to few people.

Our special interest is in poems that describe the full range of the experience of love, from wooing the beloved, to missing out on a hopeful connection; to the problem of distance and absence in a relationship and, finally, to losing a beloved partner much too early.

We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

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An interview with the authors.

Explaining the features of the book.

Reading of 关雎 Crying Ospreys·Books of Songs 1

Reading of 一剪梅·红藕香残玉簟秋 A Cut Plum Blossom: The Lotus has Withered, yet its Scent Lingers; I Lie Upon my Autumn-chilled Bamboo Mat