This spring morning I lie sad on my bed in white insulated clothes.
The white door 1 is barren and I am sorrowful.
I feel cold as I watch the red tower 3 through
When I went home last night after sending you off,
The rain fell like a pearl curtain and street lamps seemed to drift in the
During your long journey, you should lament the sunset as I do.
Early in the morning I remembered that we met in my dream.
How can I send you my love letter and the jade earrings?
Even if I could find such a kind goose 4,
How can it pierce through a thousand mile of dense clouds 5?
Here the white door refers in general to lovers' secret rendezvous. It
comes from a folk song of the South dynasty, "Yang, the Traitorous Daughter": "I
step out the white door for a while/ And hide behind the willow trees./ I would
love to be the fragrance submerged in water./ And you would be the huge furnace
in the mountain."
The first two lines hint that Li hardly slept during the night.
The red tower was the place where Liís lover used to live.
This refers to a legend from the time of the Han dynasty (206 B.C.-220
A.D.). In 100 B.C., after a period of peace between Hungary and the Han dynasty
of China, the King of Hungary detained Ambassador Wu Su of China. This started a
war (99 B.C) which lasted 18 years. When they agreed to a truce, the Emperor of
China sent an envoy to inquire about Wu Su. The King of Hungary first denied any
knowledge of the affair. The envoy made up a story by saying, "The Emperor of
China received a letter that Wu had tied to the leg of a wild goose." The King
of Hungary then admitted to his fault and released Wu Su. Later, in their
fiction, Chinese writers often used a wild goose as a means of delivering
Here dense clouds refer to the obstacle of traditional taboos.