It is a wonderful way to start a new year for the light! Poetry illuminates hope, passion and joy. It reaches us as a connection of the past, present and future. More, it connects people’s heart.
With the will to do a book launch at Kubrick, Steven Schroeder shipped 5 of his new poetry book “a dim sum of the day before” all the way from Texas to Hong Kong. Texas is a dear place to Steven for he grew up in Texas Panhandle. The memory of the plain is deeply rooted in his subconsciousness. Wherever he is or whatever he is writing about, his friends put is, he is talking about Texas.
Granted with mulit-talents, Steven is a writer and professor at the University of Chicago and Shenzhen University, a co-founder and organizer of the VAC(Virtual Arts Collective) and the Chicago-Kuming poetry group respectively. Steven is a philosopher and poet. He is interested in understanding the relationship of poetry with philosophy and he publishes extensively on this subject. Before writing poetry, he is actually a painter and he still paints and draws. Perhaps the best way to introduce Steven as and just as “Steve”.
People often ask him when he is in China “Why do you come to China?” or “Why do you go to China?” when he is in Chicago. In answering these questions, he wrote a poem “For the Light” included in the new poetry book.
I come to China to learn to walk away /for the light / for silence in a wall of sound/ for the leaves, always autumn/ for the children / for the tricycle flower garden / OR
No one goes anywhere for any reason
but for love, drawn
by circles of friends, driven
by circles broken.
There is no place
(translated by Li Sen and Wang Hao/ 王浩 、李森 译)
Apart from being a writer, professor, philosopher, poet and painter, Steven is the dearest teacher, mentor and friend for his students. In the process of contacting and preparation, some of his students write to me, expressing the pain they have to think of him being away to Chicago for half year’s time.
Writing poetry is a process of slowing down. In slowing down, you will have a better concentration, better analysis, better quality of living and a better breath of air. Steven will agree on this, will you?
Online chapbook of a dim sum of the day before: stevenschroeder.org/kubrick-cahpbook.thumbnails.htm
(Photos by Paul Wan)