十八年来堕世间， 吹花嚼蕊弄冰弦。 多情情寄阿谁边。 紫玉钗斜灯影背， 红绵粉冷枕函偏。 相看好处却无言。
------------ Gary's English translation ---------------- 十八年来堕世间， She has fallen into this mortal world since 18 years ago. 吹花嚼蕊弄冰弦。 Innocently she used to blow dandelions and chew flowers and played beautiful chords. 多情情寄阿谁边。 To whom she entrusted her true love? 紫玉钗斜灯影背， Against the lamp, I gazed at her lying there: her hairs a bit fluffy and her jade hairpin is askew, 红绵粉冷枕函偏。 her pillow case slightly slanted and her powder puff case was aside unclosed. 相看好处却无言。 Looking at her and enjoying her beauty, there is no words need to be said.
简介： 纳兰回忆着一个美好的她。。。 她是谁呢？一种说法是他的亡妻卢氏；另一种说法是他后来纳的妾江南才女沈婉。 由“十八年来堕世间”这句更像他的亡妻，因为卢氏嫁给纳兰时是18岁。 而由“吹花嚼蕊弄冰弦”这句，多数人解释为懂音律会玩多种乐器而言， 应该是歌妓出身的沈婉。 但由我的看法，“吹花嚼蕊”可能并非是指玩弄乐器，而是字面上的吹蒲公英和嚼花蕊， 那是天真无邪的小女孩的动作，因此应该是卢氏。 In this poem, the poet was reminiscing about a fair lady... Who is she? There are two schools of guessing: 1. his deceased wife, Ms.Lu. 2. his concubine Shen Wan. (the majority of scholars think so) Because Ms.Lu married Nalan when she was 18, which corresponds well with the first sentence of this poem: she was an angel who fell into this mortal world 18 years ago. Thus some people think the subject is Ms.Lu. However, most people believe Shen Wan is the subject. The primary reason for their argument is the clause "吹花嚼蕊". There are citations of ancient poems using "吹花嚼蕊" to imply "playing instruments and studying phonology". Since Shen Wan was a gaisha and she was good at instruments and phonology, thus this poem is for her. On the other hand, I have a different opinion. I think "吹花嚼蕊" may simply mean its literal meaning: "blowing dandelions and eating flowers" --acts reserved for innocent little girls. Thus following this line of thinking, I vote for Ms.Lu.
注释： 堕duò: fall 世间: mortal world 吹花: blowing flowers 蕊: pistil(female) or stamen(male) 嚼蕊: chew pistils and stamens 吹花嚼蕊: blow flowers and chew flowers. There are two possible meaning for 吹花嚼蕊: 1. they are acts by innocent and childlike little girls 2. play music instrument and sing song and study phonology 弄: do, make,[*]play 冰弦: [lit]icy chord(musical instrument), legend said there was a kind of chord made with "冰蚕丝", which is a kind of silk of very high quality. 寄: mail to,[*]entrust,deposit 多情: [lit]a lot of love;(n)very amorous person,[*]true love;(a)too sentimental,affectionate,passionate 阿谁: to whom? (纳兰自己) 边: side 钗chāi: hair pin 紫玉钗: purple-colored jade hair pin 斜: askew,slanting 背: back,face about,reverse,against 红绵: 红棉 red cotton, [*]powder puff 女子擦粉用的粉扑 粉: powder 红绵粉冷: powder puff powder cool,[*]powder puff case not used for a while but left unclosed 枕函: pillow case made with wood, can also be used as lady's cosmetic case 偏: askew,slanting 相xiāng: mutually,together 好处: good, benefit,[*]good looking,beauty
(***主词动词及时态分析尚未完成!) 逐字字面中翻英(literal translation): 十八年/来/堕/世间， 18 years/since/fall into/(this)mortal world. 吹/花/嚼/蕊/弄/冰/弦。 blew/flowers/chew/pistil and stamen/play/icy/chords 多情/情/寄/阿谁/边。 true love/feelings/entrust/whose/side? 紫/玉/钗/斜/灯/影/背， purple/jade/hair pin/askew/lamp/shadow/face about 红绵/粉/冷/枕函/偏。 powder puff/powder/cold/pillow case/slanted 相/看/好处/却/无/言。 to each other/looking/beauty/but/no/words