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The Book of Songs 詩經

國風‧豳‧鴟鴞 Lessons from the states - Odes of Cao - Chi Xiao

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O owl, O owl,
You have taken my young ones; -
Do not [also] destroy my nest.
With love and with toil,
I nourished them. - I am to be pitied.


Before the sky was dark with rain,
I gathered the roots of the mulberry tree,
And bound round and round my window and door.
Now ye people below,
Dare any of you despise my house?


With my claws I tore and held.
Through the rushes which I gathered,
And all the materials I collected,
My mouth was all sore; -
I said to myself, ' I have not yet got my house complete. '


My wings are all-injured;
My tail is all-broken;
My house is in a perilous condition;
It is tossed about in the wind and rain:
I can but cry out with this note of alarm.


English translation: James Legge

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