From Heaven Lake to Tang Poets

Vikram Seth

Vikram Seth is an Indian writer born in Calcutta.

He studied at Nanjing University from 1980 to 1982.

His book From Heaven Lake is a travelogue of his journey home in 1981, by road from Nanjing through Sinkiang and Tibet to Nepal.

It is a fascinating account of a part of China that has since long disappeared.

Seth also authored a slim book containing his translations of the poems of three Tang dynasty poets.

Three Chinese Poets has a wonderful Introduction. It is an anthology of the famous poems of Wang Wei, Li Bai and Du Fu.

These three are the most famous of the Tang poets.

Coincidentally they lived in the same era. Wang Wei and Li Bai were born in 701. Wang Wei died in 762. Li Bai died a year earlier in 761. Du Fu is 712 to 770.

The poem shown here is Living in the Hills: Impromptu Verses by Wang Wei.

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