The Fragrant Tree

BY WEI YING-WUH

T'ang Dynasty

In a far-off fragrant garden
Grows a tree of beauty rare,
Whose reflection on the brooklet
Makes a vision fair.
But when now I see this vision,
Heart and mind are wrung with grief,
Mourning hours of blissful meeting—
Every hour too brief.
Rich as ever is the foliage,
Opal clouds the shimmering boughs,
And the dewy leaves still glisten
While the sun allows.
But, alas, Her presence lacking,
What are all such things to me!
She will never more be plucking
Blossoms from this tree.
Here beside the brook are traces
Of her light and gladsome feet;
But again we two shall never
In this garden meet.