Wu Tsao was born in China around 1830. Although she married a merchant, she preferred women as both friends and lovers.
Later in her life, Wu Tsao became a Taoist preistess and moved into seclusion. She is often referred to as the third best poetess of China.
(Translated by Kenneth Rexroth and Ling Chung)
Bitter rain in my courtyard
In the decline of Autumn,
I only have vague poetic feelings
That I cannot bring together.
They diffuse into the dark clouds
And the red leaves.
After the yellow sunset
The cold moon rises
Out of the gloomy mist.
I will not let down the blinds
Of spotted bamboo from their silver hook.
Tonight my dreams will follow the wind,
Suffering the cold,
To the jasper tower of your beautiful flesh.
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