Li Qingzhao was a poet in the time of China's Song Dynasty. She was born in 1084 in Shandong, China and died in 1155. Born from two poet parents, her path in life was decided from the beginning. Li met and married her husband Zhao Mingcheng, also a poet, and together developed a far more mature and eloquent writing style.
However, war soon broke out causing the couple to flee. Their home burned down and many family members killed, they ran south. Then one day, on his way to a military post, Zhao fell ill and died. This poem was one of the poems written by the grief-stricken Li after the passing of her husband.
Li Qingzhao: A Southern Song for the Dead
李清照: 南歌子 悼亡
The milky way flows in the heavens
A dark shroud hangs over the world
The coolness of autumn brings tears soaking my pillow and mat
I get out of bed and untie my night robe and reckon
The deep night must soon turn to morning
On the robe, small lotus seed pods are sewn on with green thread
Lotus leaves sparsely sewn on with gold thread
The weather of the old days, the clothes of the old days
Only these feelings aren’t the same
In the time of our old home
Translated with guidance from Baidu Baike.