A War Poem for the Lost Homeland

滿江紅.寫懷, 2018

for SATB Chorus and Piano

//video coming soon~
performed by The Greeners’ Sound and Emas Au

A War Poem for the Lost Homeland
Yue Fei (1103-1142)

Anger makes me bristle
with my cap raised;

I lean on the rail,
watching the rain cease.

Lifting my eyes,
I cry towards the sky;
Emotions burn
in my heart without ease.

The merits or fame I have achieved at thirty
are nothing more than dust;
Battling eight thousand miles under clouds and the moon,
bear the hardships I must.

Never tarry or wait!
When the youthful head
has turned white, Bitter regrets
will come too late.

What a shameful defeat of Jingkang!
We have yet to avenge the humiliation. So deep is the national hatred!
When can we bring it to the final cessation?

We are to ride long chariots
for certain,
And to trample down
the Helan Mountain.

In hunger,
we are fully determined to feast on the flesh of the Tartars;
In laughter and chatter,
we will quench our thirst with the blood of the invaders.

Let us start all over again,
And vow to recover
the mountains and rivers of our country;
By then, to the Royal Court
we shall return in glorious victory.

A War Poem for the Lost Homeland was a well-acclaimed masterpiece written by Yue Fei, which is believed to be completed when he was forced to retreat from a seemingly advantageous battle. In this poem, Yue expressed his resentment from witnessing his homeland being invaded and kept a steadfast mind to conquer the enemy. 

The music setting of the poem depicts Yue’s changing emotions in contrasting texture, harmony, tempo and other musical elements. The piece is woven in various intricate rhythm pattern in phrases like “Anger makes me bristle with my cap raised”, “We have yet to avenge the humiliation” and “When can we bring it to the final cessation?”, featuring the overwhelmingly intense and impassionately moving atmosphere of the poem. 

岳飛 (1103-1142)





//[Score preview]