The Book of Songs

Creator

Date

1954

Identifier

Brasch Collection PL2478 F9

Type

Publisher

London: George Allen & Unwin

Abstract

Out in the bushlands a creeper grows
The falling dew lies thick upon it.
There was a man so lovely,
Clear brow well rounded.
By chance I came upon him,
And he let me have my will.

The oldest collection of verse from China, The Book of Songs contains 305 poems written between the 11th and 7th centuries B.C. Centuries of moralistic Confucian interpretation had smothered the poetry and translations failed to convey their beauty. Arthur Waley cut through that edifice of moralistic scholarship and gave us the poetry in the songs. Not many knew of Waley’s genius; fortunately Charles Brasch did.
(Chosen by Professor Brian Moloughney, Department of History and Art History, Otago)

Files

Cab 8-waley.jpg

Citation

Arthur Waley, “The Book of Songs,” ourheritage.ac.nz | OUR Heritage, accessed October 8, 2022, https://otago.ourheritage.ac.nz/items/show/9960.