In the capital, Spring comes late;
The noisy chariots and horses are passing.
They say, "It is the time of the peonies."
So they come together to buy flowers.
Prices, high and low, may change,
But also it depends on how much you buy,
Hundredsshine bright red.
There is a bouquet white as crystal.
Sheltered by curtains overhead.
And constructed on a bamboo framework
Water and set in mud.
These are the old colors, but changed.
Why did the people spend so much for flowers?
What does the speaker lament about this custom of spending so much for flowers?
Interpretation of PO-CHU-I poem "BUYING FLOWERS"?
Well if it was in the "capital" then it was a city so flowers probably didn't grow much around there. When people brought flowers to the city to sell, it was probably something like a craze. They were probably high since they were so hard to come by. Also, the speaker says that some are high and some are low, depending on how much you buy, so that does not necessarily mean he spent a small fortune. After all, red roses on valentines day are not cheap flowers, depending on how many you buy.
**To Felix, I had never read this poem before and after reading your response, I totally get that from the poem as well. The red flowers being "tainted" girls and the white, the virgins? Is this supposed to be like men paying for Geishas virginity?
Reply:It is all about young girls losing their virginity