• Annotated Full Text
  • Literary Period: Tang Dynasty
  • Flesch-Kincaid Level: 8
Poetry

Ch'ang-kan

Translated by Arthur Waley

“Chang-kan,” or “A Poem of Changgan” in other translations, was written by Li Po, who lived from 701–762 CE during China’s Tang Dynasty. “Chang-kan” reflects the lyric poetry that flowered during the era, recounting the young love and loss experienced by the woman who narrates the poem. The poem addresses the speaker’s husband, celebrating their meeting and wedding, lamenting his departure, and planning for their reunion. Translated into free verse, the poem captures the epic sweep of romantic love and the dramatic scenery of China’s Yangtze region. “Chang-kan” is a love poem and a coming-of-age narrative, exploring the emotions of a woman who develops from the playful memories of childhood to the sadness and vitality of adulthood.

  • Annotated Full Text
  • Literary Period: Tang Dynasty
  • Flesch-Kincaid Level: 8