桃花扇


《桃花扇》
招子庸作,金文泰譯

「桃花扇,寫首斷腸詞,寫到情深扇都會慘悽。命冇薄得過桃花,情冇薄得過紙。紙上桃花,薄更可知。君呀,你既寫花容,先要曉得花的意思。青春難得,莫誤花時。我想絕世風流都冇乜好持。秋風團扇,怨在深閏。寫出萬葉千花,都為情一個字。唔係你睇侯公子李香君,唔係情重,點得遇合佳期。」

The peach-blossom fan

The peach-blossom fan has written upon it a poem of heart-breaking verse.
If you write of deep passion, the fan will be but a source of anguish.
No fate is more frail than the peach-blossom, no passion more frail than paper:
Wherefore you readily may know that peach-blossom painted on paper is more fragile still.
My lord, since you depict flower-faces, you first should understand the thoughts of flowers:
The green spring is hard to gain! Spoil not the flower-season.
Methinkgs that joyance, if unattainable in this world, is not greatly to be trusted.
The round fans of autumn bring their dirge into the sequestered bower,
Where maidens paint thereon then thousand leaves and a thousand flowers, all for the sake of the one word ‘passion’:
You doubt it? Then behold the loves of the poets Hau and Lei Hong-kwan: had not their passion been deep, how could they have reached the halcyon days?

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