Yi Jian Mei Lyrics

No end of artists have recorded this song! I found a YouTube video with the lyrics in Pinyin (the singer is Timi Zhou), which makes it easier to keep my place in the music while learning the form. I also found a video with English subtitles:

Click to go to English version.

Click on image to go to English version.

I actually like the vocals in these two recordings better than the one that goes with the video of the form. I’ve transcribed Pinyin and English translation below. The opening movements that I wrote up the other day extend through the second line of the second verse.

Zhen qing xiang cao yuan guang huo     True love is like the wild field

Ceng ceng feng yu bu neng zu ge      Wind and rain cannot create barriers

Zong you yun kai ri chu shi hou      The cloud will break and the sun will shine

Wan zhan yang guang zhao yao ni wo      On you and me


Zhen qing xiang mei huo kai guo      True love is like the blossoming plum

Leng leng bing xue bu neng yan me     It cannot be buried by the snow

Jiu zai zui leng zhi tou zhan fang    It blossoms at the coldest time

Kan jian chun tian zou xiang ni wo     And sees spring coming towards us


Xue hua piao piao bei feng xiao xiao     The snow falls and the wind blows

Tian di yi pian cang mang     The heaven and the Earth are completely white

Yi jian han mei ao li xue zhong     One branch of plum stands proudly in the snow

Zhi wei yi ren piao xiang     Its scent is only for you


Ai wo suo ai wu yuan wu hui     My love is without complaint and regret

Ci qing chang liu xin jian     This love always stays in my heart

One stanza’s worth of instrumental music follows. Then repeat from xue hua to the end. At the end of the vocals, there is a short instrumental closing (about two lines’ worth). The form closes with the music for a grand total of about 26 lines, lasting just over three minutes in this video.


BLUE LAKE  by Elizabeth Buhmann

Richmond, Virginia, 1968. Regina Hannon’s family was destroyed by the loss of a sister she can barely remember. When she learns that the death was once investigated as murder, Regina sets out to find the truth about tragedy reaching back to the early years of the century. Stirring up old heartache and fury, she is blindsided by unexpected danger. Read the book…

Yi Jian Mei

One Plum Blossom is the title of a song for which a lovely and unique sword form has been choreographed. I have seen it before, a couple of years ago, but that was before studying Yang sword. Sword is an acquired taste. Here’s a video:


So this is a surprise new project–I had planned to learn 56-sword next. Long Feng does this so beautifully it makes me weepy. Another woman, new to our group, knows it also. How can I pass up the opportunity to learn it? It is longish–more than 3 minutes.

Here’s another video of the same form, Yi Jian Mei Tai Chi Sword. The performer is 80! So no excuses.


Using that first video, vocals start at :15. Opening form: she circles both arms clockwise (from the performer’s perspective) and finishes with the left arm extended, right arm raised and left knee lifted.


She pulses once on the beat, then extends the right arm higher and points the left toe to touch the ground. Then she circles the right arm counterclockwise, stepping left, right and extending the left to the side. Eyes follow the right hand.


Lift into this position, which reminds me of Wu-style kua hu as shown below. Then unwind, stepping left, to point ahead as you would doing three rings around the moon. That’s the first 30 seconds.


She will not take the sword for another 15 seconds or so. From the pointing position, follow through and circle the right arm up and back, while stepping up to point the right toe. Lift the right knee, point both arms left and look left:


What comes next is complicated–a 7-count Bagua walking with the sword spun overhead. Unwind to the right (she does a little pulsing move to start) and take seven steps R-L-R-L-R-L-R in a circle, turning out to the left on step 6, the back to the right on step 7 so the right foot faces front. Sink and step back with the left to reach the position shown below. This move lasts 5 seconds, from :35 to :40 in the video.

plum-qishi4.The sword circles all the way around overhead, from a back-carrying position to a front carrying position. The right arm is just following the body in front, then circles down and overhead at the end. Just watch the video (slow motion: use the gear symbol to select .25 speed).

She stands up in the right leg, swinging both arms in a clockwise (to her) circle, steps back with the left and then the right, dips, and swings both the right arm and the right leg across the front of her body as shown below. Finally! She takes the sword.


She then steps right and left and pivots on her toes. While turning she slashes down in back, high in front and around behind her. She steps back with the left and stabs overhead like this:


That’s 53 seconds. What an opening. I’ll try to learn it before next week.