We should not become complacent over any success. We should check our complecency and constantly criticise our shortcomings, just as we should wash our face or sweep the floor every day to keep them clean.
The Gods on the death of his wife Yang Kai-hui I lost my proud poplar and you your willow As poplar and willow they soar straight up into the ninth heaven and ask the prisoner of the moon, Wu Kang' what is there. He offers them wine from the cassia tree. The lonely lady on the moon, Chang 0, spreads her vast sleeves and dances for these good souls in the unending sky. Down on earth a sudden report of the tiger's defeat. Tears fly down from a great upturned bowl of rain. May 11, 1957
The Long March The Red Army is not afraid of hardship on the march, the long march. Ten thousand waters and a thousand mountains are nothing. The Five Sierras meander like small waves, the summits of Wumeng pour on the plain like balls of clay. Cliffs under clouds are warm and washed below by the River Gold Sand. Iron chains are cold, reaching over the Tatu River. The far snows of Minshan only make us happy and when the army pushes through, we all laugh. October 1935
Three Songs 1 Mountain. I whip my quick horse and don't dismount and look back in wonder. The sky is three feet away. 2 Mountain. The sea collapses and the river boils. Innumerable horses race insanely into the peak of battle. 3 Mountain. Peaks pierce the green sky, unblunted. The sky would fall but for the columns of mountains. 1934-35
Winds flap the sail, tortoise and snake are silent, a great plan looms. A bridge will fly over this moat dug by heaven and be a road from north to south. We will make a stone wall against the upper river to the west and hold back steamy clouds and rain of Wu peaks. Over tall chasms will be a calm lake, and if the goddess of these mountains is not dead she will marvel at the changed world. June 1956
Return to Shaoshan I regret the passing, the dying, of the vague dream: my native orchards thirty-two years ago. Yet red banners roused the serfs, who seized three-pronged lances when the warlords raised whips in their black hands. We were brave and sacrifice was easy and we asked the sun, the moon, to alter the sky. Now I see a thousand waves of beans and rice and am happy. In the evening haze heroes are coming home. June 25, 1959