by tendo zenji
Encountering Snow on the Road to Ch’ang-an
Far into distances on this Ch’ang-an road,
year-end skies spread away all ashen haze,
drifting snow filling rivers and mountains
new moon to old, dark blur beyond blur.
Arriving geese can’t tell rock from water.
Crows cry hunger across abandoned fields.
I’m empty here, a grief-stricken traveler
gazing: no sign of cook-smoke anywhere.
translated by David Hinton in The Mountain Poems of Meng Hao-Jan