Artist's inscription, signature, and seal on leaf 4: In imitation of [T'ang] Wang Hsia's use of ink. Wang Gai of Hsiu-shui [seal] Gai; Artist's poem, signature and seal on leaf 7; Artist's poem, signature, and 2 seals on leaf 8.
8 colophons and 24 additional seals: 1 colophon and 2 seals of Shih Jun-chang (1618-1683); 1 colophon and 3 seals of Wang Shih-chen (1634-1711); 1 colophon and 2 seals of Li Lai-t'ai (dates unknown); 1 colophon and 3 seals of Mi Han-wen (1661 'chin-shih'); 1 colophon and 3 seals of Tai Wang-chin (17th c.); 2 colophons and 6 seals of Tai Wang-lun (1655 'chin-shih'); 1 colophon and 2 seals of Wang Wan (1624-1690); 1 seal of Chang Yin-huan (1837-1900); 2 seals unidentified.
Artist's inscription, signature, and seal on leaf E: In imitation of [T'ang] Wang Hsia's use of ink. Wang Kai of Hsiu-shui [seal] Kai.
Artist's poem, signature, and seal on leaf G:
At an empty window sucking on a brush, the autumn water nearby,
Green are the rushes, and bamboo reach to the sky.
For those who love hibiscus, river moonlight is best;
In this tiny shelter I keep company with sleeping egrets.
Wang Kai [seal] Wang yin Kai.
Artist's poem, signature, and 2 seals on leaf H:
The waters of the Hsün-yang River flow around the town [Chiu-chiang in Chianghsi Province];
Yü Liang [Western Chin Dynasty general and statesman] once made a night excursion here.
The air was fresh and cool - it must have been the eighth month;
That noble gathering would still be known a thousand years thereafter.
In the tantalizing ways we feast there is no difference, past or present,
Lofty and pre-eminent talent still overflows in the exchange of verses,
Tall and large pavilions all share in good writing.
Joy winging through the air is no less than that in the Southern Tower.
[The Southern Tower, in Nanch'ang, Hupei Province, was where Yü Liang spent an evening with friends and contemporaries exchanging poetry and ideas.]
In the mid-autumn of the ting-ssu year , these paintings and comments are presented to the venerable MengWeng, leader of the literary circle, for criticism. Wang Kai of Hsiu-shui [seals] Wang yin Kai; An-chieh.
8 colophons and 24 additional seals: 1 colophon and 2 seals of Shih Jun-chang (1618-1683); 1 colophon and 3 seals of Wang Shih-chen (1634-1711); 1 colophon and 2 seals of Li Lai-t'ai (dates unknown); 1 colophon and 3 seals of Mi Han-wen (1661 chin-shih); 1 colophon and 3 seals of Tai Wang-chin (17th c.); 2 colophons and 6 seals of Tai Wang-lun (1655 chin-shih); 1 colophon and 2 seals of Wang Wan (1624-1690); 1 seal of Chang Ym-huan (1837-1900); 2 seals unidentified.
A. Poem by Shih Jun-chang:
Trees enmeshed in clouds darken the river ferry;
So grand a scene could only belong to the season of late spring.
Looking upon the Five Lakes, fishermen are few,
You don't know who the oarsman is.
Random comment for the venerable Meng Chih-weng to correct. Shih Jun-chang.
B. Poem by Wang Shih-chen:
A valley stream winds around a hermit's home,
Over dark bamboo and yellow reeds leans one corner of the house.
Watching the wake of a fishing boat off somewhere,
The ripples in the water are like wild geese nesting in the sand.
Inscribed for Meng Weng by his junior, Wang Shih-chen.
C. Poem by Li Lai-t'ai:
A small bridge merged with clouds crosses the distant water,
A few rosy clouds and autumn colors trim the clear river.
I stand alone at leisure in empty mists;
The mountains' verdant sides and misty peaks face the small window.
Inscribed for venerable Mr. Meng Weng, Li Lai-t'ao.
D. Poem by Mi Han-wen:
Coming and going time after time,
The front pavilion rests upon a great river.
Distant sails, the spring waters broad,
A tall temple, the afternoon sun strong.
Beneath the shadow of a butterfly, red peonies,
Amidst the chatter of birds, green vines.
Unable yet to return to the old mountains,
In vain I hum the "Picking ling-chih" song.
Written for Meng Lao, Mi Han-wen.
[The last two lines refer to the Four Old Recluses of Mount Shang who lived during the Ch'in Dynasty [221-206 BC], and the song they sang about picking ling-chih, the mushroom-like growth thought to produce immortality.]
E. Poem by Tai Wang-chin:
Who picks up his unrestrained brush to write down misty peaks?
To gaze at mountains from an empty house is a pleasure inexhaustible.
I even wish I were physically within a painting.
Where floating clouds are not depicted, but only a vast sea of waves.
Written for the comments of Mr. Meng Weng, your junior associate, Tai Wang-chin.
F. Poem by Tai Wang-lun:
Splashed ink, dripping wet, cannot be restrained
Smartweed flowers are boundless, the water flowing long.
The old fisherman moves his oar leisurely back and forth,
In ten thousand valleys and a thousand peaks, the air is filled with fall.
Written on one of the paintings for the venerable Meng Weng, Tai Wang-lun of Ts'ang-chou.
G. Poem by Tai Wang-lun:
Precipitous slopes, distant peaks, and trees with forking branches,
Set apart are village huts for two or three households.
In one of them a recluse expounds from a book on the Tao,
Burning incense, alone he sits to chant the Nan-hua [Chuang-tzu].
Written on a second painting for the venerable Meng Ch'i, Tai Wang-lun of Ts'ang-chou.
H. Poem by Wang Wan:
Clouds like a landslide cover the boundless sky;
Year-round howling, the direction of the wind is ominous.
The boom has just been lowered with a hundred feet of sail;
Yet you can predict the violent wind from the direction of flying pennon tails.
Reed blossoms fly in disarray, their leaves badly battered;
Yangtze porpoises blow upon the waves, producing wild ripples.
You people of the land, don't sing about the joys of the trader,
Winds and waves like these will make their journey treacherous.
Written for venerable Meng Weng, your junior friend from Yao-fen, Wang Wan.