on 15 February 2010
"Wei Ying-wu (737-791) is considered one of the great poets of the T'ang Dynasty [618-907], ranked alongside such poets as Tu Fu, Li Bai, and Wang Wei. Strangely, though, only a handful of Wei Ying-wu's poems have ever been translated into English. Born into an aristocratic family in decline, Wei served in several government posts without distinction. He disdained the literary establishment of his day and fashioned a poetic style counter to the mainstream: one of profound simplicity centered in the natural world.
Award winning translator, Red Pine, is one of the world's leading translators of Chinese literary and religious texts. Red Pine translates 175 of Wei's poems and demonstrates why he is "one of the world's great poets." Presented in a bilingual Chinese-English format, with extensive notes and an informative introduction, In Such Hard Times is a long-overdue world premiere.
'[Translator] Red Pine's out-of-the-mainstream work is uncanny and clearheaded.'--Kyoto Journal
'Red Pine's succinct and informative notes for each poem are core samples of the cultural, political, and literary history of China.'--Asian Reporter" -Edited product description from Amazon.com
Having long been a fan of Red Pine's work, I was delighted to receive this volume (for which Red Pine won the Lucien Stryk Asian Translation Prize 2010). Once again Red Pine has done great service in providing, in English, a fine translation of a wonderful poet almost unknown in the West. Thank you Red Pine.