The Book of Poetry, tr. by James Legge, , at sacred-texts.com
2What time in Chou ruled our King Chi,
Among the princesses of Chi,
In the domain of Yin,
The second daughter of her name
Had through the land a noble fame.
Her from her parents Chi had sought,
And to his capital he brought,
And wedded her, Ta-jên.
They both could perfect virtue claim,
No duty left undone.
A mother soon the wife became;
The child was our King Wên.
3This our King Wên in all his way
Did watchful reverence display,
With clearest wisdom serving God,
Who, pleased to see the course he trod,
Him with great favor crowned.
His virtue no deflection knew,
But always to the right was true.
The states beheld, and all approved;
With loyal ardor stirred and moved,
Wên as their head they owned. p. 336
4Throughout the land Heaven sent its glance;
Whom should it to the throne advance?
To Wên came the decree.
While he was still in early years,
By Heaven's arranging there appears
She who his bride should be.
North of the Hsia, on Wei, she shone,
The child of a great house.
Then Wên, to years of manhood grown.
Tendered to her his vows.
5Like a fair denizen of Heaven
Was she to whom those vows were given.
The gifts he sent were deemed complete,
And to the Wei, his bride to meet,
Our Wên in person went.
A bridge of boats across the stream
He Made, as did her state beseem.
She crossed; to Chou they held their way.
Great was the glory of the day,
And glorious the event!
6Heaven thus its grand appointment made,
And Wên to all the land displayed, p. 337
While still he ruled in Fêng.
Hsin's eldest daughter was the wife,
Whom Heaven prepared to bless his life,
And take his virtuous mother's place.
And Heaven soon gave them further grace;
’Twas from them King Wu sprung.
Heaven kept and helped the child, until
Its summons to him came.
Then Wu marched forth to do its will,
Smote Yin, and won his fame.
7Countless as forest leaves, Yin's hosts,
Collected from its utmost coasts,
Were marshaled in Mu's famous plain,
To meet King Wu;—but all in vain.
Chou to the crisis rose.
Wu viewed their multitudes with fear,
But Shang-fu's words soon gave him cheer:—
"With you is God; your doubts dispel.
With Him as helper, we shall quell
The pride of all our foes."
8Vast was the plain. Each sandal car,
That brightly shone amidst the war,
Dashed rapidly along.
Each team of steeds, black-maned and bay,
Against all obstacles made way. p. 338
Like mighty eagle on the wing,
Shang-fu was ever near the king,
Whose heart was thus made strong.
At the first charge Yin's troops gave way,
And took to shameful flight.
That morn a long and brilliant day
Displaced the previous night.