The Selected Poems of T'ao Ch'ien

T’ao Ch’ien, David Hinton, trans.

T’ao Ch’ien (365–427 CE), one of the most revered poets in classical Chinese literature, is presented in a lucid translation with an introduction. The Selected Poems of T’ao Ch’ien brings into English some of the most important poetry in all of Chinese literature. As David Hinton writes in his Introduction, T’ao Ch’ien “stands at the head of the great Chinese poetic tradition like a revered grandfather: profoundly wise, self-possessed, quiet, comforting.” T’ao gained quasi-mythic status for his commitment to life as a recluse farmer, despite poverty and hardship, and his poetry mirrors that life. Its unassuming surface reveals a rich philosophical depth for which he became an honored figure in the Zen tradition.

Paperback: $11.00 list price

IndieBound Amazon

ISBN: 9781556590566

Format: Paperback

About the Author

T’ao Ch’ien (also known as T’ao Yüan-ming, 365–427 A.D.) was the first writer to make a poetry of his natural voice and immediate experience, thereby creating the personal lyricism which distinguishes ancient Chinese poetry and makes it seem so contemporary. T’ao gained a quasi-mythic status for his commitment to life as a recluse-farmer, despite poverty and hardship, and his poetry mirrors that life. Its unassuming surface reveals a rich philosophical depth. Virtually all major Chinese poets recognized in T’ao a …

Read more

About the Translator

David Hinton has published numerous books of poetry and essays, and many translations of classical Chinese poetry and philosophy. These translations have earned wide acclaim as contemporary texts that convey the literary texture and philosophical density of the originals. Hinton’s translation work has earned fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He has received two major awards given for poetry translation in the United States: the Landon Translation Award …

Read more

Reviews

“This little book of T’ao Ch’ien’s poetry, along with Hinton’s spare introduction sketching out the contours of the poet’s life, is a blessing.”—Shambhala Sun

“David Hinton’s translations are smooth, faithful yet lively renderings.”—The Harvard Review

“David Hinton is one of the most impressive of the younger translators of classical Chinese poetry… His renderings are varied and imaginative while remaining faithful to the spirit of the original.”—Burton Watson