Song of the Quiet Life

By Cai Tianxin

This collection of poems and translations changes continually in its images and perspectives. It is both peaceful and disturbed, like fragments of classical poetry cut up and reassembled. Cai Tianxin's own name comes from a poem. He was born on 3 March 1963, and his father who knew classical poetry well chose his name from a poem by Du Fu, which starts on an uncharacteristic note of celebration: On March 3 the weather is new At the water's edge of Chang An There are many beautiful women 'Tian' means 'weather' or 'day' and 'xin' means 'new, so 'tianxin' can be read as 'fine weather' but also as 'every day new'. ('Chang An' is the ancient name of Xi'an - in the Tang dynasty, the capital of China.) In Cai Tianxin's words: "I have always believed that a real poet or artist need not necessarily be knowledge- able, but he has to have the need to breathe fresh air... the travels of a poet are full of freedom, ecstasy and solitude." Cai Tianxin was born in 1963 in Huangyan on the southeast coast of China. His father insisted he study sciences because he felt it was an occupation that couldn't be politically compromised. He is a professor of mathematics at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, and an author of many books of poetry, essays, travel writing and biography. His poems have been translated into thirteen languages. In an essay, titled Mathematicians and Poets he wrote, 'Mathematics is a true language, which not only records and expresses ideas and the process of thinking, but also creates itself (through its own poets and writers)'.

Publication Date: 9/15/2006
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9780958491532