Asian Poetry

Joe Friedman and C. Baymon Stephenson 3rd Period 4/29/15

Explanation

The poem “I Built My House Near Where Others Dwell” was chosen

because it seemed relatable towards the importance of the peace found in nature

and finding one’s self. It was likable in the sense that the poet was able to disconnect

from the clamor of the city and the overwhelming amount of people.

The poem “Haiku” or “Spring Rain” was chosen because of the calming emotions it

created in the reader. It also seemed interesting in the aspect that reactions of other

characters or objects are provided towards the rain.

"I Built My House Near Where Others Dwell" by T'ao Ch'ien

I built my house where others dwell,

And ye there is no clamor of carriages and

horses.

You ask of me "How can this be so?"

"When the heart is far the pace of itself is distant."

I pluck chrysanthemums under the eastern hedge,

And gaze afar towards the southern mountains.

The mountain air is fine at evening of the day

And flying birds return together homewards.

Within these things there is a hint of Truth,

But when I start to tell it, I cannot find the words.

"Haiku" (Spring Rain) by Yosa Buson

Spring rain:

Telling a tale as they go,

Straw cape, umbrella.


Spring rain:

In our sedan

Your soft whispers.


Spring rain:

A man lives here-

Smoke through the wall.


Spring rain:

Soaking on the roof

A child's rag ball.

Summary/Analysis

"I Built My House Near Where Others Dwell"

This Chinese poem describes how the poet feels about his home. He begins by telling that his house was built in a populated place, most likely in an urban area. However, he says that he never feels as if he is living in a populated area. He explains how this can be possible in a way that is similar to the saying, "Home is where the heart is." The poet disconnects from his physical home because his heart is elsewhere. He describes his spiritual home as being far away in the mountains where he is comforted by flowers, flying birds, and the mountain breeze.


"Haiku"

This Japanese poem illustrates the scene of a rainy evening. The poet uses descriptive language to give the audience a good idea of how the spring rain would appear. The wording gives off a calm and quiet vibe to go with the steady pace of rain. Aside from describing the rain, several lines also seem to tell how the townspeople respond to the rain beginning. Some people walk through the rain with umbrellas and capes and share tales with others. A fire is burning and a person is whispering nearby.

Literary Elements

"I Built My House Near Where Others Dwell"

Metaphor: “When the heart is far the place of itself is distant.”

Imagery: “The mountain air is fine at the evening of the day”


"Haiku"

Repetition: “Spring rain”

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DWELLING IN THE FUCHUN MOUNTAINS

Artist: Huang Gongwang

Year: Between 1348 and 1350


The painting depicts a fragment of the wild, open, and free mountains. I feel that Dwelling In the Fuchun Mountains can properly represent "I Built My House Near Where Others Dwell" because it appears to match the poet's description of a calm home in the mountains.

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RAINY NIGHT AT MAEKAWA

Artist: Kawase Hasui

Year: 1932


The painting Rainy Night At Maekawa I feel represents the poem "Haiku" very well. The painting portrays a rainy evening that is much like the one illustrated by the poem's imagery.

Pink Floyd - Comfortably Numb (with lyrics)
"Comfortably Numb"

The song by Pink Floyd holds a similar theme to that of "I Built My House Near Where Others Dwell." The song seems to be about leaving behind pain and being disconnected from one's current status in the material world. The poem is similar to this, as it focuses on the poet's detachment from his physical location to spiritually be somewhere else in the mountains.

Pink Floyd - Wish you were here (2011 - Remaster) - [1080p] - with lyrics
"Wish You Were Here"

This song captures the mood very closely of the poem by Yosa Buson. The feeling that both works give off is of tranquility, safety, and quiet. Both the song and the poem also mention a nearby person who is most likely very close and loved by the artist.