poetico-botanical problems

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Reply to Li Shuyi

Verlor meine stolze Pappel, verlorst deine Weide;

o Yang, o Liu: leicht aufgeflogen zu Neunten Himmeln.

Befragen, verh�ren Wu Kang, was er da habe,

und Wu Kang reicht ihn entgegen, Zimtbl�tenwein.

Vereinsamte Ch'ang O, breitet die weiten �rmel,

in zehntausend Meilen des Raums f�r die treuen Seelen

zu tanzen.

Die pl�tzliche Nachricht: auf Erden ergab sich der Tiger;

in Tr�nen brechen sie aus, wie Str�me von Regen.

(Joachim Schickel)

I lost my proud poplar, you lost your willow;

o Yang, o Liu: gently soared up to Ninth Heavens.

Questioned, interrogated Wu Kang, what's there to give,

and Wu Kang offering them: fragrant-blossom wine.

Ch'ang O in seclusion, spreads her long sleeves in space

of ten thousand miles, to dance for the faithful souls.

The sudden news then: on earth, the tiger was to surrender;

and they burst out crying, with tears pouring like rain.

(tr. A.W. Tueting)

BTW, here's still another "poetico-botanical" problem:

kuei hua chiu/gui4hua1jiu3/gueyhuajeou:

How to translate this?? - "laurel brew", "fragrant-blossom wine" etc.

In this compound (gui hua), the word gui does not have the meaning of "cassia" ( nor

"cinnamon" as given in the German version), but that of "osmanthus fragrans" or "olea

fragrans" (in German: Duftbl�tenstrauch/fragrant-blossom-shrub) usually used for flavouring teas.

But, if trying to be correct *botanically*, the original's reference to the Chinese Sisyphos

(the man in the moon cutting the Kuei-tree over and over again) is getting lost! Yet, also

Mao's reference already seems to be wrong: but not according to Wolfgang Eberhard who states that the

cinnamon-tree/cassia-tree (gui) and their blossoms (gui hua) *are* "osmanthus fragrans"! Any

help? --.aulun.