In the capital, the three brothers of the Tian family in Jingzhao, after deliberating on the division of their wealth, decided to share their resources equally. However, there was a purple catalpa tree in the courtyard, and they planned to each take a portion of it. The next day, when they went to cut it, the tree withered immediately, resembling the appearance of being burned. Terrified, Tian went to inspect it and exclaimed to his brothers, “This tree originally shared the same root.
In the ancient city of Kuaiji, Zhao Wenshao, a court attendant in the Eastern Palace, found himself enchanted by the melancholic moonlit nights. Seated on Qingxi Bridge, merely a stone’s throw away from the residence of the esteemed Wang Shuqing, his heart yearned for home.
On one autumn night, Wenshao, immersed in his homesickness, began to sing the sorrowful melody “Black Crows Soar in the Western Night.” The haunting tunes echoed through the stillness of the night, reaching the ears of an unexpected audience.
In the vicinity of Qiantang, there resided a skilled healer named Xu Qiufu, known for his expertise in treating ailments. His abode was situated east of the Hugou Bridge, overlooking the serene waters of West Lake. One night, Qiufu heard a plaintive moaning in the air, the sound laden with intense suffering. Intrigued, he rose and followed the sound to its origin.
Addressing the ethereal presence, Qiufu inquired, “Are you a malevolent spirit?
In the eastern outskirts, thirty miles from the ancient Wuxing County, lies the enchanting Meixi Mountain. At the base of this mountain stands a singular stone, rising vertically, reaching a height of over a hundred feet. It possesses a natural elegance, appearing as a perfectly rounded structure akin to the size of two houses. It stands alone, soaring into the clouds above, presenting an insurmountable barrier to ascent. Perched atop this majestic stone is another, resembling a circular millstone, ceaselessly revolving with a sound reminiscent of wind and rain.
In the tranquil town of Wu, Zhang Cheng experienced an extraordinary event. One night, as he arose, he unexpectedly beheld a lady standing at the southern corner of his residence. With a beckoning gesture, she summoned Cheng, who promptly approached. The mysterious woman revealed, “This place is the cocoon chamber of your household, and I am the spirit residing here. On the fifteenth day of the coming lunar January, prepare a white porridge with honey and offer it to me.
In the ancient tale, on the fifth day of the fifth month, Qu Yuan chose to end his life by throwing himself into the Mi Luo River. The people of Chu mourned his tragic fate and devised a unique ritual in his honor. They used bamboo tubes filled with rice, casting them into the water as an offering. Centuries later, during the Han Dynasty’s Jianwu era, a scholar named Qu Hu appeared in the Qu region of Changsha.
In the ancient times, DengShao from HongNong(弘農) embarked on an herbal expedition to HuaShan(華山) on the first day of the eighth month. To his astonishment, he encountered a celestial child holding a five-colored pouch, collecting dewdrops from cypress leaves. These dewdrops resembled pearls and filled the entire pouch. Intrigued, Shào inquired, “What is the purpose of this?” The celestial child replied, “Master Chì Sōng utilizes these to enhance vision.” With these words, the celestial child vanished without a trace.
In the land of Ru Nan, Huan Jing, accompanied by Fei Changfang, dedicated several years to scholarly pursuits. Changfang warned him, saying, “On the ninth day of the ninth month, a calamity will befall your home. Hurry and leave! Instruct your family to make crimson sachets, fill them with wormwood, tie them to their arms, ascend to a high place, and drink chrysanthemum wine. This will dispel the misfortune.” Taking heed of the advice, Jing and his family ascended a mountain.
In the ancient city of Guìyáng, there lived a sage named Wǔdīng who was deeply immersed in the path of immortality. He frequently traversed between the mortal realm and the ethereal realms. One day, he suddenly addressed his younger brother, saying, “On the seventh day of the seventh month, the Weaving Maiden will cross the river, and all celestial beings will return to their palaces. I have been summoned and cannot delay; it is time for us to part.”
Inquisitive Emperor Jin Wu engaged Shu Shu Lang, a learned official named Zhi Yu Zhong Qia, in a discussion about the peculiar tradition of gathering at Qu River on the third day of the third month. Zhi Yu Zhong Qia shared a curious anecdote from the Han Dynasty, where a villager named Xu Zhao, facing a tragic loss of three newborn daughters, initiated a communal practice. The villagers, seeking to ward off misfortune, gathered at the river, cleansed themselves, and sent wine cups downstream—an origin story that left the Emperor less than thrilled.
After Huan Xuan usurped the throne and entered the Vermilion Bird Gate (朱雀門) (Note: The Vermilion Bird Gate is an entrance to the imperial palace), he suddenly encountered two small children. Their entire bodies were as black as ink, harmoniously singing a song called “Caged Song.” On the roadside, numerous other children joined in the chorus. The lyrics lamented, “Bound in a thorny cage, ropes tightly wrapped around the belly. The chariot has no axle, leaning against a solitary tree.”