(Draft with corrections), first half 17th century

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The poem below was written by Jōzan in response to a series of gifts, which are referenced in the poem. The poem was sent to him by Hayashi Razan and his brother Nobuzumi, who were scholars of Chinese art and literature.

“As You Like It” scepter, elbow-rest, iron flower vase:
I would not exchange them for a hundred treasures—all are superb!
Old qin, fly-whisk, wood Kunlun incense stand:
The Nine Tripods are nothing to them! I’m at a loss for words.
And the poems about these six gifts are worth thousands in gold:
You two wonders within your hearts hold ten thousand volumes of books!
Yuanfang and his brother—cherishing Zhifang!
Delian full of harmony—close to Xiulian!
Playing the xun-ocarina, on the altar of poetry establishing elegant discourse!
You set singing the qi-flute, in the garden of arts fulfilling the classics!
Pale or dark, full or sparse, your brushes freely move;
Former and latter, longer, shorter, your phrases always outstanding.
The Star of Letters moves through your work, praised as scintillating;
The richness of argument overflows, so vast in power!
This friendship, like that of Ni Heng and Kong Rong—communicating oldest feelings;
Talent like that of Su Shi and Su Che—it must be Heaven sent.
In hidden forests, concealed valleys, utterly buried away;
In the gardens of humor, the copses of banter, your worldly ties are few.
But time flies by, and I lament that I am fading:
News from you has been slow to come; alas, you are so far!
Feelings of the countryside—I would send a sprig of plum blossom,
But as I gaze out at the vastness, limitless are the snow-covered peaks!
I feel ashamed that this, my poem, is so slapdash in feeling:
But who could I get to twist his poet’s beard, and write it for me instead'

Details
Title
(Draft with corrections)
Artist Life
1583 - 1672
Role
Calligrapher
Accession Number
2013.63.33
Curator Approved

This record has been reviewed by our curatorial staff but may be incomplete. These records are frequently revised and enhanced. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email collectionsdata@artsmia.org.

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