Celebrating A Hunting Expedition

by Confucius


Our chariots were well-built and firm,
Well-matched our steeds, and fleet and strong.
Four, sleek and large, each chariot drew,
And eastward thus we drove along.
Our hunting cars were light and good,
Each with its team of noble steeds.
Still further east we took the way
To Foo-mere's grassy plains that leads.
Loud-voiced, the masters of the chase
Arranged the huntsmen, high and low.
While banners streamed, and ox-tails flew,
We sought the prey on distant Gaou.
Each with full team, the princes came,
A lengthened train in bright array.
In gold-wrought slippers, knee-caps red,
They looked as on an audience day.
Each right thumb wore the metal guard;
On the left arm its shield was bound.
In unison the arrows flew;
The game lay piled upon the ground.
The leaders of the tawny teams
Sped on their course, direct and true.
The drivers perfect skill displayed;
Like blow well aimed each arrow flew.
Neighing and pleased, the steeds returned;
The bannered lines back slowly came.
No jostling rude disgraced the crowd;
The king declined large share of game.
So did this famous hunt proceed!
So free it was from clamorous sound!
Well does our King become his place,
And high the deeds his reign have crowned!

Last updated January 14, 2019