On the 15th day of the 8th month of the
lunar calendar, the moon is round and the
Chinese people mark their Moon (or Mid-autumn) Festival. The round shape to a Chinese
means family reunion. Therefore the Moon
Festival is a holiday for members of a family to get
together wherever it is possible.
On that day sons and daughters will bring
their family members back to their parents' house
for a reunion. Sometimes people who have
already settled overseas will come back to visit
their parents on that day.
As every Chinese holiday is accompanied by
some sort of special food. On the Moon Festival,
people eat moon cakes, a kind of cookie with
fillings of sugar, fat, sesame, walnut, the yoke of
preserved eggs, ham or other material. In Chinese
fairy tales, there live on the moon the fairy Chang
E, a wood cutter named Wu Gang and a jade
rabbit which is Chang E's pet. In the old days,
people paid respect to the fairy Chang E and her
pet the jade rabbit.
The custom of paying homage to the fairy
and rabbit is gone, but the moon cakes are
showing improvement every year. There are
hundreds of varieties of moon cakes on sale a
month before the arrival of the Moon Festival this
year. Some moon cakes are of very high quality
and very delicious. An overseas tourist is advised
not to miss it if he or she happens to be in China
during the Moon Festival.
Poems on Moon and Home
The Mid-Autumn Moon|
by Li Qiao
A full moon hangs high in the chilly sky,
All say it's the same everywhere, round and bright.
But how can one be sure thousands of li away
Wind and perhaps rain may not be marring the night?
The Yo-Mei Mountain Moon
by Li Bai
The autumn moon is half round above the Yo-mei Mountain;
The pale light falls in and flows with the water of the Ping-chiang River.
Tonight I leave Ching-chi of limpid stream for the three Canyons.
And glide down past Yu-chow, thinking of you whom I can not see.