Tang Dynasty poems

This is just a fun tip that I'm planning to use in my Feng Shui 2 session tonight.

I read that in the Tang Dynasty people would greet each other by composing a short poem. (Or, by composing a few lines from a poem which they would continue to compose later.)

My heroes are in the Ancient Juncture now, having just entered through a portal in Chang'an, the capital city (and one of the most populous cities in the world, at the time).

They'll be encountering a friendly sorcerer who makes musical instruments and a sinister ghost possessing an abandoned temple. To add flavor to the encounters I've composed and copied a variety of Tang poems for characters to recite. Here's a famous collection:


If they fight the sorcerer, he'll be playing melodies on his pipa while he recites one of these poems each time he attacks.

They'll meet a mysterious beautiful lady in the abandoned temple, and she'll recite a sad poem of mourning. When they defeat the ghost of her lover, he'll explode in a burst of flame after reciting a poem which contains a clue to their objective, and he'll leave flaming characters carved in the ground which confirm the clue.

Anyway, I thought this would be a fun way to show the sophistication and cultured atmosphere of the lush, decadent Tang period.

Oh, and Wu Zetian's daughter Princess Taiping will fall in love with one of the heroes and then Emperor Wu herself will command the heroes to track down and prevent the Eaters of the Lotus' latest scheme!

This went a little differently than expected, as the heroes took a different path than I had planned for. However I still got to have elegant Tang Dynasty lords and ladies reciting poetry!

It was cool because the poems kept referencing shrines, temples and temple bells, and the players noticed this and it ended up being significant to the plot.

Anyway, it was fun, and now I need to pick out or compose some more Tang poems for their next trip to the Ancient Juncture!