Tag Archives: Chinese literature

Not quite cuckoo

But closer every day 鳩居鵲巣kyuu.kyo.jaku.sou Literally: dove – sit/be [in a place] – magpie – nest Alternately: Taking someone else’s achievements or social position for yourself. Undeservedly stealing someone else’s laurels or spotlight. Notes: This comes from our friend, the … Continue reading

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A Sangaria sangria

国破れて山河在り (Kuni yaburete sanga ari; “A country, destroyed; mountain and river, existing”) Definition: The works of humankind – castles, towns, countries – may fall or be destroyed, but the mountains and rivers remain. Kings and kingdoms pass, but Nature endures. … Continue reading

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And the leaves that are green

…seem to be green again the next year… but we are not leaves. 年年歳歳 nen.nen.sai.sai Literally: year – year – year/age – year/age Alternately: Every single year. Year in and year out. Notes: As always, the second instance of each … Continue reading

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Fly me home, country winds

越鳥南枝に巣くい、胡馬北風に嘶く (Ecchou nanshi ni sukui, koba hokufuu ni inanaku; “The bird from Yue builds its nest in southern branches; the horse from Hu neighs at the northern wind”) Definition: An expression of homesickness or nostalgia. A southern bird living in … Continue reading

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What was I saying? Ah, yes.

閑話休題 kan.wa.kyuu.dai Literally: leisure – talk – rest – topic Alternately: “But setting that aside….” A phrase used to put an end to a digression, aside, or idle chatter, and return the listener’s attention to the main topic or thread … Continue reading

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