[More Translations]
Moonlight Lovers
Translation by Francis Chu

I wake up, sleeping in moonlight.  Waning moon make me miss you.
Don't want to wake up; who'd understand?  Afraid to see that you're not

My love's heart sinks into sea!  Take me there to find it again.
Please love me ten thousand years with your heart!

[Love is moonlight's present.] [I wait for angel's love letter.]
[Say you love me!]
I'd be fast asleep for Love -- don't wake up...

Eternity, is it there?  It's just that my heart can't let go.
Oh North Star, lead the way!  Do not hide; help me find my love.
I love you!  Every night I will wait [for you].
Oh my heart, for my love, sleeps by the moon's sea.
Oh lonely me, missing whom?  Who'd understand?

[I weep under moonlight;] (I also sleep under moonlight.]
[There's no regret!]
Waiting for my love to kiss me awake.

[A single day in my dreams,] [is also a year in my memories.]
[Say you love me!]
I'd be fast asleep for Love -- forever...

I have spent some time trying to translate the Chinese version of "A Love Before Time" (a.k.a. "Moonlight Lovers"). I tried to make it actually match the syllables so it can actually be song (there are a few minor mismatches, but I think it still works -- besides, "A Love Before Time" and "Moonlight Lovers" have a few mismatched syllables also). Of course that entails a few words had to be mangled (among other consequences), but this is common practice anyway (e.g., "'Twas the night before Christmas".) I've also made no attempt to make the verses rhyme.
-- Francis Chu

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Moonlight Lovers
Translation by Michelle Cheang

I awaken bathed in moonlight
The waning moon reminds me of you
I never want to waken from this slumber
Would you understand why?
For I fear that when I open my eyes
You will not be by my side

For love of you
I would plunge to the depths of the ocean
Come with me
As I search for my heart anew

Please love me for ten thousand years 
And forevermore love me with all your heart

[Our love is a gift from the moon]
[I await your letters sent to me by loves emissary]  
[Say you love me]
And for your love I will willingly slumber forever
Never to awaken again

What is all eternity to me?
My heart will never let go of this dream
Northern Star    
Light my way
Conceal nothing from me
That I should find my true love once again 
I love you forevermore
And I breathlessly await your coming each night

For love of you
My heart lies in eternal slumber
Adrift in a sea of moonlight

Alone and bereft
Who is it that my heart longs for?
Could you ever understand why?

[I weep beneath the moon]
[And fall asleep awash in moonlight]
[Without regret for this love we had]
I await the kiss of my true love
Wakening me from this slumber

[A day in this blissful slumber]
[Is a year of sweet memories for me]
Tell me you love me
And for your love I will willingly slumber
For all eternity

It's not a literal translation nor does it rhyme. I have just tried to capture the gist of the meaning. I think that the Mandarin lyrics are delicately wistful and lyrical. It would be impossible to recapture the evocativeness of "Moonlight Lover" in Mandarin. But I gave it a try anyway! :)
-- Michelle Cheang

For the music file, Chinese lyrics and its English translation, go to Moonlight Lover

Back to Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon   Back to Theatre