Songs from Cold Mountain

SFCM cover

Songs from Cold Mountain
307 Poems by Chinese poet Han Shan (8-9th C)
In standard Chinese and English, trans. by Span Hanna
Introduction by the translator, with Pronunciation Guide
Appendices and Bibliography
352 pp, standard paperback (230 x 150 mm)

No one knows who Han Shan was. The name means “Cold Mountain”, after
the place where he lived, under a crag in the mountains of Zhejiang Province,
near the town of Tiantai. He was a recluse, avoiding visitors (as he frequently
tells us in his poems), but from time to time visiting the large monastery of
Guoqing Si (Kuo-ch’ing Ssu) at Tiantai, where he was befriended by two
monks, Feng Gan (Feng Kan) and Shi De (Shih Te). Legend has it that he
scrawled his poems on random surfaces: rocks, trees, the walls of houses.
Someone collected them, and the body of work has been retained. His life is
tentatively (but convincingly) dated around 720 – 810 CE.

In January 1991 Span Hanna was travelling in eastern China, and noticed
there was a Han Shan Temple nearby. He caught a bus and while in the area
found a bookshop where he bought some books, among them a complete
collection of Han Shan’s poems. It was a 1988 reprint by Guanghua Temple
(Putian, Fujian Province) of an older edition dated c.1932.

The book went home with him, and in June 2014 he decided to read it
formally, from beginning to end, and attempt to translate it, partly a project
to keep his Chinese skills alive, and partly also to share the work with a few
close friends who could not read Chinese but had some appreciation and
understanding of Chinese poetry and philosophy. This volume is a result of
those endeavours.

Cover image:
Unknown artist
Depiction of Han Shan Te’-Ch’ing, 1600

https://au.blurb.com/b/9546581-songs-from-cold-mountain

About dutkiewiczarchive

The archive of Dr Adam Jan Dutkiewicz, artist, writer, art historian, researcher, editor, publisher, book designer, proof reader, catalogue designer, exhibition curator and specialist in South Australian art and enthusiast for post-war architecture and design
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