Thomas Schall - Lauten

The Ancient Wind

The peach blooms open on the eastern wall --
I breathe their fragrance, laughing in the glow
Of golden noontide. Suddenly there comes
The revelation of the ancient wind,
Flooding my soul with glory; till I feel
One with the brightness of the first far dawn,
One with the many-coloured spring; and all
The secrets of the scented hearts of flowers
Are whispered through me; till I cry aloud.
Alas! how grey and scentless is the bloom
Of mortal life! This -- this alone I fear,
That from yon twinkling mirror of delight
The unreal flowers may fade; that with the breath
Of the fiery flying Dragon they will fall
Petal by petal, slowly, yet too soon,
Into the world's green sepulchre. Alas!
My little friends, my lovers, we must part,
And, like some uncompanioned pine that stands,
Last of the legions on the southern slopes,
I too shall stand alone, and hungry winds
Shall gnaw the lute-strings of my desolate heart.

Li Hua