Friday, October 10, 2008

The melody of the autumn grass and the poetry of the Vanchingbals

Among the many poets who left their marks in the Mongolian Middle Age culture there were four sons of the noble man Vanchingbal: Gularansa, Sunveidanzan, Guunchig and Injinashi. A family having four poets is perhaps a rare event in the history of the world poetry. Vanchingbal himself was a writer, a historian who read many Mongolian and Chinese historical annals. In 1838-1840 he wrote the first eigh chapters of the novel “The Blue Sutra” which his son Injinashi continued to its completion. Especially, Injinashi and Gularansa were very talented poets and wrote many beautiful poems.

Gularansa was born in 1820. Although, he lived only 31 years he much enriched Mongolian literature with his beautiful lyrics. In Gularansa’s works one can see that he was combining the traditions of the Mongolian poetry with the Chinese classical poetry with great skill. He looked through the life in a society with great clarity and wrote “if you want to know the taste of this world taste the gall” and “Writing my mistaken poems with a three inch bamboo is better than running after fame wearing out shoes and socks”.
Like him, his younger brothers Gunnachig, Sunveidanzan and Injinashi started very early composing poems, reading history books and translating literature. The Vanchinbals ran a family teaching in their compound in the western Tumd Hoshuun of Inner Mongolia used to do their literary work together.
The fact that four brother poets were born in the 19 th Century is not a sheer accidental happening.

Dr. G. Mend-Ooyo

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