Liu Yuxi Poem: The Flower-admirers – 刘禹锡《元和十年自朗州至京戏赠看花诸君子》









[1] 元和十年:公元815年。

[2] 看花诸君子:指一起承召回京的柳宗元、韩泰等志同道合者。

[3] 紫陌:京城长安繁华的街道。

[4] 红尘:街道上行人车马扬起的尘土。

[5] 玄都观(ɡuàn):长安城南崇业坊(今西安市南门外)的一座道教庙宇。

[6] 刘郎:诗人自指。

The Flower-admirers

Liu Yuxi

Dust raised by cabs on grassy lane caresses my face;

No flower-admirers but follow the cabs’ trace.

Thousands of peach trees in the Taoist temple’s place

Are all planted after I fell into disgrace.

In 815 the poet lamented over his banishment from the capital in 805 with the result that he could not admire the peach flowers in the Taoist temple.


A poem written by Liu Yuxi, a literary scholar of the Tang Dynasty, is a poem about people watching flowers in Xuandu. The poem is a subtle satire on the new bureaucrats who were in charge of the court at that time, through the people watching the flowers at Xuandu. The first and second lines are about people going to Xuandu to see the flowers, showing the lively scene of people and horses shouting and flowing on the avenue, and people coming back to see the flowers “no one did not say anything” about the beauty of the flowers, showing a satisfied attitude; the third and fourth lines superficially write that there are so many beautiful peach blossoms in Xuandu, which they did not have at all when they were in Chang’an ten years ago. The newly planted peach trees have grown up and blossomed after ten years’ absence from Chang’an, but in fact they are a satire on the powerful and noble at that time. The whole poem is sarcastic and pungent, thus offending those in power.

Previous articleDu Fu Poem: Lament along the Winding River – 杜甫《哀江头》
Next articleLiu Yuxi Poem: The Taoist Temple Revisited – 刘禹锡《再游玄都观》
Discover the wonders of China through studying abroad - a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to expand your horizons, immerse yourself in a rich and diverse culture, and gain a world-class education.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here