POEM: STAYING OVERNIGHT AT WILLOW BANK INN
When are my travels ever going to end?
My old body has come to this inn again.
The roadside pines and junipers are ten years older,
Once short, but now tall and stately.
The place where I stopped last night is far away;
And tomorrow, tonight will be last night.
In just an instant the present has become the past –
I’d have to be a saint not to drink wine.
From Yang Wan-li Heaven my Blanket: Earth my Pillow: Poems from Sung Dynasty China New York & Tokyo: Weatherhill, 1975 (Translated and introduced by Jonathan Chaves