|When “Poet” Becomes an Occupation|
Selective Preference of the 5th Cyber-Island Photography Contest
Chou Meng-tieh, the poet, is the subject of my photographic work in 2009. He devoted all his life into the writing of poems. Being more than 90 years old and suffering from ailments lately, he still persists in writing which engraves “poet” as his longest occupation.
Chou Meng-tieh‘s profile: He studied at Normal College in Yuan-Xi Village, Henan Province. He joined the China Youth Corps in 1947 and, after retiring from the army, worked as a store clerk, elementary school teacher, tomb keeper, and book stall owner. In 1980, he was forced to close his book stall due to gastric ulcer surgery. He was a member in the “Blue Star Poetry Association.” His poems reflect stories of life experiences and miseries of mind; they present a deep conversation between a pure, lonely soul and chaos in the world. His poem is a fusion of Oriental Zen and Occidental surrealism. On the one hand, he seeks salvation from Zen and Buddhism; on the other hand, the depth of surrealism brings him confidence and expectations in the pursuit of life. He writes about himself and corresponding reality. When he writes Zen into his poems, he enlarges his personal world to an unlimited universe. In Ye Jia-ying’s opinion, “Chou is a poet who casts miseries from philosophical thoughts.” His poetries Realm of Solitude was published in 1959, Goddess incarnate in 1965, and Collections of Chou Meng-tieh in 2009. He is a poet throughout his whole life.
To view Gold Prize of the 5th Cyber-Island Photography Contest, please go to The Funeral Orchestra.
Text and images are provided by Exhibition of Cyber Island, Taiwan