Three Alleys of the Setting Sun

Under Jiankang City, the river is open, and the water is dark and full of boats. On the boat with red lanterns hanging high, you get on and off, and you get crowded. Your family’s silk and bamboo, my family’s orchestra, resounded across the river, and waves drifted away with the wind, reminiscent of the prosperity of the capital.

“Boatman, just moor there!”

On the Wu Peng boat, the white-clothed boy pointed forward. The people on the boat are the only ones who follow the lead. The steerer immediately swayed the boat, stopped the scull, dropped the cable, got off the boat, and tied the cable to the willow tree. The drooping willows are like a hanging green waterfall pressing the canopy of the boat, and under the setting sun, a river of green water flows quietly.

The son is Wang Huizhi, a native of Linyi, Shandong, a famous scholar of the Eastern Jin Dynasty, and the fifth son of Wang Xizhi, the sage of calligraphy, and was called to Beijing.

Unlike his father, a gentle and modest gentleman, he is arrogant and unruly by nature. Looking at the world, there is only one person who can enter Wang Hui’s magic eye, and he admires only one person, the Di Sheng Huan Ziye.

Huan Ziye, a famous scholar in the Eastern Jin Dynasty, studied and practiced martial arts when he was young. Huan Ziye not only has unparalleled musical attainment, but also has a smooth career path. He has joined the army of the great Sima Huanwen, and is currently the prefect of Huainan.

Wang Huizhi has been fond of Huan Ziye for a long time, but Huan Ziye is like the white cloud above his head, neither far nor near, neither high nor low, just out of reach.

“Little Ji.”

“What are your orders, son?”

Wang Huizhi said, “Have you really seen Huan Ziye?”

“Really!” Xiaoji said jokingly, “I’ve seen him, but he didn’t come to see me.”

Wang Huizhi laughed: “When the wild pheasants in the world become phoenixes, he will definitely come to see you.”

Xiaoji blushed: “Young master will make fun of you.”

“Tell me, how did you meet Huan Ziye?”

“Five years ago, I went to Kyoto to deliver a letter to my master. That day, Huan Ziye was playing his flute right away, which caused a stir in half of Jiankang City.

“Do you wear official uniforms?”

“No, like the son, dressed in white.”

“I must meet this Huan Ziye.”

On the shore, the sound of gongs for clearing the way, the cries of cattle driving, the screeching of wheels, the neighing of people and horses. The roads in the capital are strictly hierarchical, with rules and no order.

Wang Huizhi stood on the bow and looked here, and Xiaoji brushed the willow silk on his head with his hand. At this time, a horse-drawn carriage came galloping in front of him, and a man stood on the carriage, wearing a square scarf, a white robe, and a jade flute on his waist. Xiaoji recognized him at a glance and said, “He is Huan Ziye!”

Wang Huizhi slammed his palms together and said, “Send a message to him for me, and said that I have heard that Xianggong is good at playing the flute for a long time. Can you play a piece for me?”

Xiaoji asked suspiciously, “Will he come?”

Wang Huizhi was impatient and said, “Just go and pass it on.”

Xiaoji asked for a fast horse, went over to the front of Huan Ziye, stopped him and said, “My son Wang Huizhi has heard for a long time that Sir is good at playing the flute, and invites you to play a piece for him.”

“Is that the boy in white on the boat?”

“Exactly, how does the lord know?”

Huan Ziye didn’t answer, he immediately returned to the car, got to the side of the boat, got off the car, and jumped off the shore, his clothes fluttering, like a white cloud gently falling beside Wang Huizhi. The two looked at each other. Huan Ziye in front of him, with his broad forehead, is handsome and elegant, like a fairy.

Huan Ziye took out the jade flute from his waist and played three tunes in a row. After playing, he jumped onto the bank of the river, turned his horse’s head, and whipped his whip violently.

The reverberation still echoed in my ears, and the setting sun on the river was like blood. Everyone on the boat was stunned. How many times have they heard such a song? All have ears. Someone asked Wang Huizhi, “How can you be sure that Huan Ziye will come to play the flute?”

“He believes that I am a bosom friend. Money is easy to get, but bosom friend is hard to find. If I don’t come, I will regret it for the rest of my life.”

Someone said: “Huan Ziye suddenly came and suddenly left, and the host and guest didn’t say a word, which is too unreasonable.”

Wang Huizhi said: “He blows with his heart, I listen with my heart, and communicate with each other’s hearts, isn’t it enough?”

The crowd suddenly realized.

These three pieces are the famous “Three Lanes of Plum Blossoms”. In Tang Liying’s poem “General Wang on the River”, “Only Huan Yi plays the flute on the river, lying down and blowing the three lanes to send the setting sun”. This is what he said. Huan Yi is Huan Ziye.

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