The Wanderer's Return

BY TU FU

T'ang Dynasty

The setting sun beneath the red-lined clouds,
Which mass around the foot-hills in the west,
Still floods the valley with a rose-hued light,
And lures the chirping birds to seek their rest.
The wayworn traveller pauses near the gate,
From which he sallied forth so long ago;
Unconscious then of what Fate held in store—
The years of separation, loss, and woe.
The neighbours press around the garden fence,
And gaze with mouth agape, or quietly sigh;
While wife and children awestruck, rigid stand,
And then tears flow and to his arms they fly.
'For years on revolution's waves I've tossed,
While wife and bairns mourned me in hopeless plight;
And now to-night, as in a dream, I sit
With all my loved ones 'neath the lamp's bright light.'