Quoting Wordsworth: English to Chinese to English

A Chinese friend was having difficulty with an English phrase and its translation, and asked me to help. An out of context English phrase, translated to Chinese and then back to English, its meaning would surely be lost in translation. It was.

To me the meanest flower that blows can give thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears
在我看来,最卑微的华朵 都是思想,深藏 在眼泪达不到的地方
zai wokanlai, zui beiwei de huaduo doushisixiang, shencang zaiyanlei dabudao de difang

华兹华斯 hua zi huasi Wordsworth

From the Chinese I translated to:

From what I see, the most humble blooms are thought, deep and hidden far beyond tears

This snippet, I later found, came from the last two lines of a Wordsworth poem:

And O ye Fountains, Meadows, Hills, and Groves,
Forebode not any severing of our loves!
Yet in my heart of hearts I feel your might;
I only have relinquish’d one delight
To live beneath your more habitual sway.
I love the brooks which down their channels fret,
Even more than when I tripp’d lightly as they;
The innocent brightness of a new-born Day
Is lovely yet;
The clouds that gather round the setting sun
Do take a sober colouring from an eye
That hath kept watch o’er man’s mortality;
Another race hath been, and other palms are won.
Thanks to the human heart by which we live,
Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,
To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.

William Wordsworth

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