While octagonal head-rests were common during the Sung and Ch'in dynasties, this example is distinguished by the calligraphy, written with white slip, which is a relatively rare technique. The fronds forming the fourteen character poem are executed in brown slip with particularly elegant brushstrokes. The poetic inscription reads:
Spring drunkenness meets often with an
overflow of flowers;
Autumn chants face at length the
graceful beauty of the moon.
Pillows were typically inscribed with popular ballads, Confucian sayings, and poems. The inscriptions can be as short as one or two characters and as long as over a hundred characters.