Analyze the construction of the “self” in 1 or 2 of the Chinese poems from Week 9. How do the poems (or poem) portray individualism, agency, or subjectivity?
The poem by Li Bo :
Drinking Alone with the Moon
A pot of wine among the flowers.
I drink alone, no friend with me.
I raise my cup to invite the moon.
He and my shadow and I make three.
The moon does not know how to drink;
My shadow mimes my capering;
But I’ll make merry with them both–
And soon enough it will be Spring.
I sing–the moon moves to and fro.
I dance–my shadow leaps and sways.
Still sober, we exchange our joys.
Drunk–and we’ll go our separate ways.
Let’s pledge–beyond human ties–to be friends,
And meet where the Silver River ends.
The poem by Du Fu:
Thoughts While Travelling at Night
Light breeze on the fine grass.
I stand alone at the mast.
Stars lean on the vast wild plain.
Moon bobs in the Great River’s spate.
Letters have brought no fame.
Office? Too old to obtain.
Drifting, what am I like?
A gull between earth and sky.