Came the barbarian horde with the autumn;
Out went the imperial army from the House of Han.
The general has divided the tiger tallies,
And the dunes of White Dragon are now
The camping ground of the brave.
The moon in the wilderness
Follows the movement of his bow,
And upon his sword the desert frost blossoms.
He has not even entered this side of the Jewel Gate Pass.
But do not heave a long sigh, O little wife!
He rides his white charger by the Fortalice of Gold,
She wanders in dreams amid the desert cloud and sand.
It is a season of sorrow that she scarce can endure,
Thinking of her soldier lover at the border fort.
The fireflies, flitting about, swarm at her window,
While the moon slowly passes over her solitary bower.
The leaves of the green paulonia are tattered;
And the branches of the sha-tung blasted and sere.
There is not an hour but she, alone, unseen,
Weeps--only to learn how futile all her tears are.