Poem in running script

Artist: Wen Zhengming ζ–‡εΎ΅ζ˜Ž (1470-1559)
Historical period(s)
Ming dynasty, early 16th century
Hanging scroll; ink on paper
H x W (image): 349 x 100.8 cm (137 3/8 x 39 11/16 in)
Credit Line
Purchase β€” Regents' Collections Acquisition Program
Freer Gallery of Art Collection
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Hanging scroll

China, Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644), running script
Provenance research underway.

Wen Zhengming's poem, titled At Leisure in My Studio at Year's End, may be translated as follows:

The lane at my gate is desolate and drear, few are those who come to call;
I find the true flavor of restful leisure in lounging about doing nothing.
A wayward rooster in the quiet of the day crows within the deep courtyard;
Chill sparrows shelter from western winds in this little stand of trees.
All my affairs have slipped into arrears as the year draws to its close;
My friends are scattered few and far apart and the rain just drizzles on.
Fragrance fades from the incense burner and the teacups have toppled over;
I have composed a poem on plum blossoms, but am sorry it's not well done.

Translation by Stephen D. Allee

Published References
  • Thomas Lawton, Thomas W. Lentz. Beyond the Legacy: Anniversary Acquisitions for the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. vol. 1 Washington, 1998. p. 63, fig. 27.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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