I dedicate this hymn of wine, dated from the Western Jin dynasty (265-316), to all the wine-luverz out there. The author of this lovely work is Liu Ling, better known to us in China as the Wine Immortal. I so far cannot locate any English translation of it (no need to google: I shoveled as deep as page 169). Allow me to be the first assuming there isn't. Hopefully I'm not ruining such a fine piece of art on wine through my poor attempt!
There is a Mr. Sage. He takes the becoming of the universe for one morning and the eternity in the blink of an eye. The sun is his window and the moon his door, the corners of the world are merely drops of his backyard! He doesn't walk but wander and he dwells wherever he stops adrift. He has the clouds be his canopy and the earth be his mat.
Insouciantly, he goes about with his carafe and wine bowl dangling no matter in motion or stillness, completely awash with wine, completely free from all the ebbs and flows.
The glided heir and the dormant scholar heard about my reputation. They set out to denounce me. They run to me with their chests swelled and sleeves rolled; give me a verbiage of rites and rules with bulging eyes and trembling lips. I myself, however, hold up my keg and dipper with total disregard to their presence. Sipping my wine, playing my beard and sitting with my feet facing the pair -- same as blithely as I've always been -- as I listen to their raging snarl. Ha, with my koji-mold pillow and lee-mash cushion, I spoiled myself into seraphic sensation! I am as carefree as a man can be.
I drunk in a snap and I awake with a start. I hear not the roar of thunders in sheer tranquility; I make out not the silhouette of Mount Tai by bright clarity nor can I sense the any hoarse of the cold and hot. Value and vanity are nothing but floundering lotus leaves by the shores when I look down upon the myriad of chores.
Beside me, the two gentlemen are slurring as if moths and bees!
Life is just too short for bad wine. Whenever you find a beautiful wine, seize the moment and *to hell* with moderation.