PO CHU-I - A.D. 772
WHAT of myself?
I am Like unto the sere chrysanthemum
That is shorn by the frost-blade and, torn from its roots,
Whirled away on the wind.
Once in the valleys of Ch'in and Yung I rambled at will;
Now ring me round the unfriendly plains of the wild folk of Pa.
Oh, galloping dawns with Youth and Ambition riding knee to knee !
Ride on, Youth, with the galloping dawns and dappled days!
I am unhorsed, out-ventured
I, who crouch by the crumbling embers, old, and gray, and alone.
One great hour of noon with the sky-faring Rukh
I clanged on the golden dome of heaven.
Now in the Long dusk of adversity
I have found my palace of contentment, my dream pavilion,
Even the tiny twig of the little humble wren.