Artist's inscription, signature, and 3 seals:
In my youthful days I liked to imitate the ink method of Yün-lin [Ni Tsan]. Mr. Wen, the academician [Wen Cheng-ming], remarked that I barely succeeded in achieving some resemblance. He once honored me with the inscription "lofty and imperturbable indeed was the personality of Ni Yü [Ni, the Odd]. Pale ink and blue smoke were formed by his scribbling brush. His surviving works have become so rare in the last two hundred years; only Pao-shan [Lu Chih] carries on his true tradition." In my older years, having to comply with frequent requests for paintings, my brushwork has become stronger than before and I thought to myself that I may have surpassed the Old Master. In the ting-mou year of the Lung-ch'ing era  a friend brought a small painting [by Ni Tsan] and showed it to me in the mountains. I studied and enjoyed it for a long time, then realized that I was actually inferior. This gave me second thoughts about my earlier style, so I selected a piece of old window paper and did this painting in imitation. My friend was kind enough to say that it was truly a quick and close resemblance. I then wrote a colophon and presented the painting to him. My poem says:
High mountains and distant waters are the thoughts coming from the lute;
The drunken leaves and the sparse woods are merely flowers in the mirror.
This idea, I'm sure, will be understood by Tzu-ch'i, one who appreciates my art,
It is for him that I have painted on thin paper with light touches,
The cloudy color of an autumn evening.
This is the winter solstice of the same year. By then, Pao-shan, Mr. Lu, was already over seventy years of age. Could it be that one's brush also gets old together with one's age, as the saying goes. I put down my brush with a laugh. [2 seals] Lu Shu-p'ing shih, Pao-shan tzu. [seal, bottom left corner] Lu Chih shu-p'ing. trans. WKH
6 additional seals of Chu Ching-hou (n.d.).