White Hair
(5-character regulated verse, CTS 838)
by Ch'i-chi (864-937)
Translated by Burton Watson

Don't dye it, don't pull it out,
let it grow all over your head.
No medicine can stop the whiteness,
the blackness won't last out the fall.
Lay your head on a quiet pillow, hear the cicadas,
idly incline it to watch the waters flow.
The reason we can't rise to this broader view of life
is because, white hair, you grieve us so!