Thousands of Pavilions in the Foggy Rain: Reading Historical Awareness in Natural Law through Du Mu’s Poems
【Abstract】 Poets in Tang Dynasty who liked to sing of history are not small in number, and Du Mu can be among the best of them. Du Mu’s poems that sing nostalgically of history show various degrees of historical awareness. His concern about the welfare of the nation and his wish for his readers to learn from history are identical with those poets throughout history who entertained a certain ideal for the society they lived in. However, the historical awareness in Du Mu’s poems is profounder. This is especially true in the sense that Du Mu could tell the accidental and unpredictable aspects of history. He would then look at history from a position beyond the scope of history and show the transient, insignificant, and disoriented nature of human history within the cosmos. His mind often shuttled between the vicissitudes of human world and nature’s changing course, between his sense of social commitment and his sense of detachment from human world, and between his care about and indifference to earthly reputation. He realised that the contour and meaning of human history could not be clearly defined when human history was posited against the limitlessness of space and time. His poetic images, like the branches hazed by the dim fog, birds in the remote sky, and the pavilions in the foggy rain, together with their connotations are different both from Confucian belief in social commitment and from Taoistic inclination to leave the world behind. These images body forth the poet’s transcending and penetrating views of history,which, though often overlooked, are what make the poet a master of his own school.
- 【文獻出處】 南開學報(哲學社會科學版) ,Nankai Journal(Philosophy,Literature and Social Science Edition) , 編輯部郵箱 ,2016年05期