When I began traveling to China, I read as many books about the country and its people as I could get my hands on, so I always took along a few on my trips (this was pre-eBooks). I’d read them on the long flights and during the half-hour bus ride to the shipyard where the Mei Wen Ti was built.
While I’ve always enjoyed reading the works of Chinese poets, it was during one trip that I discovered one which became a favorite; China’s renowned Tang Dynasty-era poet, Li Po (618-907 AD). I used one of his poems, “Ballad of the Voyager” in the opening of the book to help describe my own personal journey.
I think the reason I like this poem so much is because I think of myself as an “ocean voyager.” I have crossed the Pacific many times my plane (“like a bird”) and by ship (“in his ship”) and after logging over a million miles, I have left “no trace”.
My daughter Lynn tells me that I should start including videos in my blog, so here is my first, a reading of Li Po’s “Ballad”. Check back for more soon, with practice, hopefully I’ll get better at them!