Wednesday, April 7, 2010



My new book published by ITNM (Malaysian Institute of Translation). There are 48 poems originally written in Malay and translated into English by the poet. I hope it can reach out somebody out there somewhere.

Friday, April 2, 2010

THE VOYAGE OF HANG LI PO (THE POEM PUBLISHED IN FACING THE HARBOUR

The Voyage of Hang Li Po
Hang Li Po was the legendry Chinese princess, sent as a bride to the ruler of Melaka
The marriage was a mission to strengthen the newly founded kingdom.

The beautiful Princess Hang Li Po
In the voyage to Melaka
Crying in agony
So young and so tender
To be torn from her mother
Like a shoot from its root
She’d rather die
Drowned by the ocean
Then to bear this separation

Is this her fate her destiny
To be delivered as a gift, a commodity
Shipped to Melaka
As a bride and a donation
To strengthen a nation

Her mother, Her Majesty the Maharani
Had spoken in tears,
My beloved Hang Li Po, please be brave
This fact we have to face
You and me what we are born to be
As queens and princesses
We do not own ourselves
Marriage for us is not a personal decision
It is a state arrangement, a political mission

Do not cry for your father
He is a man, and a king
He loves you as a daughter
But his kingdom is everything
He laughs and cry for the nation
The kingdom demands his attention
First the reign over his land
Family happiness come second

Yes my princess
Look, what history has written
Of empires and nations
Built and strengthened
At the sacrifice and tears of women
While many brought to the end
By misdeed and greed of men