Huang Tzu(黄自) and two of his artistic songs

Huang Tzu is one of my favorite Chinese composers. There is warmth and romance in his songs. “Three Wishes of the Rose” (玫瑰三愿) is a typical example of his artistic songs. The song expresses the author’s love towards the rose and his wish for the beauty to stay. The lyrics and my english translation are as follows:

玫瑰花、玫瑰花!The rose, the rose!

烂开在碧栏杆下,Flourishing along the handrail in the garden,

我愿那妒我的无情风雨莫吹打;I wish the ruthless storm who envy my beauty do not hurt me;

我愿那爱我的多情遊客莫攀摘;I wish the emotional tourists who love me do not pick me;

我愿那红颜长好不凋谢,I wish youth stay forever and never die;

好教我留住芳华。To let me keep my eternal beauty.

In his other songs, Huang also shows his sympathy for the beauty of the nature. The Words of the West Wind (西风的话) is a chorus composed by him. I interpret the song as a tribute to the momentous beauty. The song is filled with nostalgic emotion. There is no clearcut climax. It is the peacefulness that makes this song special. Listening to this song, I always think about the lotus lake along which my family and I walked. The scent of lotus flowers is the fragrance of summer. Though written decades ago, Huang’s melodies are still widely received by modern audience, because his songs express the eternal theme of love and peace.

For more information about the great artists, please refer to this wiki link.


4 thoughts on “Huang Tzu(黄自) and two of his artistic songs

  1. “烂开”means”怒放”,so the translation should be “blossom”/“bloom” rather than perish. and for “碧栏杆”,I think it refers to 阑干, a handrail in the lanes of gardens, or in the pavilions. But nice translation:)

    • Thanks a lot for pointing out the mistake. I was too careless in translating these beautiful lyrics. I’ve searched online and found poems using this word:
      -冯贽 《云仙杂记·争春馆》:“ 扬州 太守圃中有杏花数十畷,每至烂开,张大宴,一株令一倡倚其旁,立馆曰 争春 。”
      -宋 司马光 《早春寄景仁》诗:“辛夷花烂开,故人殊未来。”
      -宋 杨万里 《初秋行圃》诗之二:“烂开栀子浑如雪,已熟来禽尚带花。”I’ve corrected this in my post.

  2. Yes, it means fully blooming. As for that poem, it is mentioning about people gathered, had a feast near the blooming flowers, and the purpose is to appreciate the beauty of flowers.

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