Let’s Learn Mulan’s Story in Mandarin Chinese (1) Mulan Joined the Army

I read an interesting news. Disney is planning to produce a live action Mulan movie. It is said Mulan will be played by a Chinese actress. Many people are very excited for this news.

To be honest, I am confused. Doesn’t it make sense that Mulan should be played by a Chinese considering Mulan is a Chinese?

Of course, I know some background why this news sounds special for many people. For a long time, Asian characters have been played by non-Asian people.

It sounds funny, however it is a sad fact happening many times.

Anyway, this time Disney plans to have a Chinese play Mulan. Then there is another rumor saying that the storyline will be totally different.

I have no idea if the rumor is just a rumor or it will be a fact soon.

In this post. I am going to teach my readers the real Mulan’s story based on a famous ancient Chinese poem: Mulan Poem (木兰诗) ( mù lán shī ) or (木兰辞) ( mù lán cí ) .

 

As some of you might know already, Mulan poem told an inspiring story about a Chinese girl who went to army fighting for her country.

Mulan Poem is one of my favorites. Even today I can still recite most parts of this poem. I am sure you will like this poem too.

Considering this poem is a bit long, in this post, I will talk about the first part of the poem.

In my next post, we will continue learning the second part.

Now join me to learn this poem together.

jī jī fù jī jī ,mù lán dāng hù zhī
唧唧复唧唧,木兰当户织。
Jiji. Jiji. Accompanying a loom’s noises, Mulan was busy with weaving on a loom.

bù wén jī zhù shēng ,wéi wén nǚ tàn xī
不闻机杼声,唯闻女叹息。
The loom noises stopped. Only heard Mulan’s sigh.

wèn nǚ hé suǒ sī ,wèn nǚ hé suǒ yì
问女何所思,问女何所忆。
Mulan, who do you miss? What do you think about?

nǚ yì wú suǒ sī ,nǚ yì wú suǒ yì
女亦无所思,女亦无所忆。
I don’t miss anybody, I don’t think about anything.

zuó yè jiàn jūn tiě ,Kè hán dà diǎn bīng
昨夜见军帖,可汗大点兵,
Last night I saw the draft. Kehan, the king, was recruiting a lot of soliders.

jūn shū shí èr juàn ,juàn juàn yǒu yé míng
军书十二卷,卷卷有爷名。
On every draft, I saw my dad’s name there.

ā yé wú dà ér ,mù lán wú zhǎng xiōng
阿爷无大儿,木兰无长兄,
My dad has no an older son. I have no an older brother.

yuàn wéi shì ān mǎ ,cóng cǐ tì yé zhēng
愿为市鞍马,从此替爷征。
I am willing to take my dad’ place to join the army.

dōng shì mǎi jùn mǎ ,xī shì mǎi ān jiān
东市买骏马,西市买鞍鞯,
I bought a good horse at a market in the west , I bought a saddle at a market in the west.

 nán shì mǎi pèi tóu ,běi shì mǎi chánɡ biān
南市买辔头,北市买长鞭。
I bought a bridle at a market in the south. I bought a long rope at a market in the north.

dàn cí yé niáng qù ,mù  sù huáng hé biān
旦辞爷娘去,暮宿黄河边。
In the morning I said goodbye to my dad and mom. In the evening I slept nearby the Yellow River.

bù wén yé niáng huàn nǚ shēng ,dàn wén huáng hé liú shuǐ míng jiàn jiàn
不闻爷娘唤女声,但闻黄河流水鸣溅溅。
I didn’t hear my dad and mom’s calling’s my name. I only heard the sound of flowing water in the Yellow River.

dàn cí huáng hé qù ,mù zhì hēi shān tóu
旦辞黄河去,暮至黑山头。
I left the Yellow River in the morning and arrived the Black Mountain in the evening.

bù wén yé niáng huàn nǚ shēng ,dàn wén yàn shān hú qí míng jiū jiū
不闻爷娘唤女声,但闻燕山胡骑鸣啾啾。
I didn’t hear my dad and mom’s calling my name. I only heard the horse’s calling in the Yanshan Mountain.

wàn lǐ fù róng jī ,guān shān dù ruò fēi
万里赴戎机,关山度若飞。
I went far away for the fighting. I went through many frontiers and mountains like flying.

shuò qì chuán jīn tuò ,hán guāng zhào tiě yī
朔气传金柝,寒光照铁衣。
I heard the sound of night timer at chilly nights . I wore my armor standing in the frigid moonlight.

As you knew already, Mulan’s story is so famous. Even Disney made a movie. There are also a lot of Chinese version songs and movies about Mulan.

In this post, we are going to appreciate a beautiful song by 任烨 (rén yè).

By the way, when 任 is used as a last name, it pronounced as: rén, otherwise it is usually pronounced as: rèn.

I have to say, this song doesn’t match this poem that much except the first part of the song lyric.

However, I like the slow pace of this song. Also, you can read Chinese characters in the video, which is helpful for your learning.

So why not take this challenge to see if you know some of the rest of Chinese characters in this song?

 

In my next post Mulan Went Back Home,  we will keep learning this beautiful Mulan’s poem in Mandarin Chinese.

Enjoy your learning.


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