|The Yellow Crane Tower Is Nationwide Famous|
|http://www.sina.com.cn 2003/03/21 12:57 中国周刊|
There are three nationwide famous ancient towers all over China, namely, the Yueyang Tower in Hunan province, Tengwangge (Teng-King-Pavilion) Tower in Jiangxi province and Yellow Crane Tower in Hubei province. And the latter is extremely attractive to all of scholarly visitors or any civilian with literary background. Some legends about the Yellow Crane Tower are still told in China. The following is a typical one.
Long long ago, there was an aged man with gray hair and long beard who rode a yellow crane, flying slowly to fall down on the top of Mount Snake. All the farmers, old and young, chatting and playing on the hillside with rocky ground were surprised to look at the stranger. One of boys stepped forward to ask him who are you?swheresare you from? ?Listening carefully to the boy, touching his beard, the aged stranger answered: My name is Wang Zi-an [King's Son-safety], my hometown is over there..."he pointed out to the blue sky, and rode on the crane's back again to fly lightly to the heaven. The Yellow Crane was fluttering higher and higher, passing through the thin mist and thick cloud and vanishing in the remote dome of the sky. An old farmer said: there are only the cranes in white, in gray or the red-crowned cranes we have seen in our human world, but no crane in yellow. I'm sure the yellow must be a fairy crane. ?And then a mid-aged man said: what we have seen is a strange event, and we should build a pavilion to commemorate what happened to us."sure!"everyone agreed with him. Afterwards, the Yellow Crane Tower was established at the top of Mount Snake. That's the tower's origin.
At first, it was to be built in 223 (during the period of the Three Kingdoms(220-280), China) at the top of Mt Snake lying near the southern Yangtse riverside, in the east part of Wuchang, Wuhan municipalityswheresthe Chinese greatest river and the most important railway line cross each other. However, the most famous tower had been burnt and rebuilt for seven times. The present Yellow Crane Tower was rebuilt and established completely in 1985. It covers 15 hectares. The whole park area is dividedsintosfour parts named the east, the west, the south, and the north. In the east part, the exhibition halls are used to display the story of the Chinese national hero Yue Fei (1103-1142), the west part is the main body of the whole scenic areaswheresthe tower stands up. The north area is full of the azalea, bamboo, pine and the like as a plant park. And in the south area stand a lot of steles with carved inscriptions written by famous scholars, writers and poets such as Li Po (701-762), Cui Hao (695?-754) and Lu Youh (1125-1210)
The Tang-Dynasty poet Cui Hao wrote one of the most famous poems about the Yellow-Crane Tower:
Long ago a man riding a yellow crane flew away,
Leaving the Yellow Crane Tower empty till today.
The yellow crane has never returned once again
The 1000-year lonely clouds leisurely remain.
The river is so clear to mirror the tree shadow,
The grasses on the Parrot Islet luxuriantly grow.
I'm not on way home as the sun behind the hill,
My sorrow waves with the mist-veiled billow.
Poet Cui Hao was considered as the first-class one with the above poem. Even the greatest poet Li Po had to believe it was not easy to write another one to surpass Cui's level while visiting the Yellow Crane Tower. Li Po said: It's impossible to have a better poem describe such a good view than poet Cui's in front of you.?
However, Li Po still wrote some lines insgroupsto follow Cui's rhyme and style when he visited the Phoenix Rampart of Nanking:
Over the phoenix rampart the phoenix flutters;
The phoenix flying away, the lonely river flows.
The Wu-palace's grasses with flowers cover its path*;
The Jin-crown was buried in a mound of the death.*
Three peaks half-fallen beyond the blue sky,
The Egret Islet divides the river to pass by.
Always I worry floating clouds cover the sun,
Missing the Tang capital Chang'an not seen.*
And also Li Po wrote a poem about the Parrot Islet as one scenic spot of the whole Yellow Crane Tower area:
The river rolls east by the Parrot Islet,
The islet lying in the river called Parrot.
A parrot flew west over Leng Mountain;
The fragrant islet's trees luxuriantly green.
From the ancient to the present, all the Chinese people have a strong desire to visit the Yellow Crane Tower. Even our late great leader Chairman Mao visited it on purpose many years ago, and also wrote a poem entitled the Yellow Crane Tower.
He wrote like this:
China has nine great tributaries flow widely long.
One north-south railway line lies heavily strong.
The misty rain is vague to be falling down.
Mt Tortoise and Snake lock the river on.
Where did the Yellow Crane fly?
It just left visitors?resort nigh.
Toast to the torrent with a cup of wine,
My tidal surge emotion is much high.
From all the above-mentioned poems we can conclude that visiting some Chinese cultural scenic spots is very helpful and significant for everyone, especially for those who want to understand the Chinese traditional culture. Almost all of good views in China are related to tower, pavilion, temple or different kinds of memorial halls used to commemorate the Chinese celebrities due to the people's worship, respect or love. Not only we could enjoy China's natural beauty but also learn something about what we need in ideological study.
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