Chinese and Japanese Poetry

By: Samantha Aguilar and Melanie Hernandez, English 2

"Thick Grow the Rush Leaves"

Thick grow the rush leaves;

Their white dew turns to frost.

He whom I love

Must be somewhere along this stream.

I went up the river to look for him,

But the way was difficult and long.

I went down the stream to look for him,

And there in mid-water

Sure enough, it's he!

Close grow the rush leaves,

Their white dew not yet dry.

He whom I love

Is at the water's side.

Up stream I sought him;

But the way was difficult and steep.

Down stream I sought him,

And away in mid-water

There on a ledge, that's he!

Very fresh are the rush leaves;

The white dew still falls.

He whom I love

Is at the water's edge.

Up stream I followed him;

But the way was hard and long.

Down stream I followed him,

And away in mid-water

There on the shoals is he!

Samantha and I chose the poem Thick Grow the Rush Leaves because we liked the repetiveness of the phrase "He whom I love". The phrase gave the poem a deeper meaning in which the person looking for "He whom I love" did not give up in any way and continued to look for their love no mater how hard the obstacles and circumstances presented.

The poem, Thick Grow the Rush, is about a women searching love. When she goes upstream the journey is long and hard. This symbolizes that when she looking and trying to find love she can't find it. When she goes downstream the journey isn't hard and tiring. This symbolizes that when she isn't trying for love it comes to her easily.

Important literary elements found in the poem is repetition when the phrase "He whom I love", "mid-water" and "white-dew".

Art and music

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This painting is called Mountain and River by Huang Xin'an. Melanie and I chose this painting because the poem setting is on a mountain with a river. The women in the poem travels up and down the river looking for a lover.

"Ono Komachi"

Was it that I went to sleep

Thinking of him,

That he came in my dreams?

Had i known it a dream

I should not have wakened.

Melanie and I chose this poem because we liked the meaning of the poem. The poem means that our dreams are a reflection of our desires. We liked that the poem was about love.

The poem's summary is a woman is not sure if she dreams of a man in her dreams. She then wakes up and realizes that in fact she was dreaming and because she woke up she wishes she had not awoken from the dream.

An important literary element found in the poem would be mood because the poem creates a longing mood for a loved one.

Art and Music

The piece of artwork shown is entitled Convergence by the artist Jackson Pollock. The artwork was created in 1952. Samantha and I chose this piece of artwork because it represents the mind in how there are scattered thoughts throughout a person's mind. The different colors of the artwork depict the different thoughts that are running through a person's mind. How the artwork complements the poem is the women in the poem did not know that her dreams of a man were indeed dreams going on in her mind.
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