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Home > Main Library > Society and Culture > Literature > Poetry > Poetry of Burma/Myanmar (mainly commentary)

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Poetry of Burma/Myanmar (mainly commentary)

Websites/Multiple Documents

Title: ko ko thett’s cannibalistic poetics: A review of ‘The Burden of Being Burmese’
Date of publication: 21 March 2016
Description/subject: "We don’t choose the world we are born into. Or the nation. As valuable as theories of the social contract may be — the idea that we chose to relinquish the freedom of unfettered existence for the security of a lawful society — the fact remains that no one in our world has ever actually confronted that choice. It’s not a contract we can annul..."
Author/creator: Sean Pears
Language: English
Source/publisher: Jacket2
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: https://jacket2.org/
Date of entry/update: 15 May 2016


Title: Myanmar and Beyond: Ko Ko Thett's The Burden of Being Burmese
Date of publication: March 2016
Description/subject: "The Burden of Being Burmese is an exciting first collection of poetry, and not only because it is the first full-length volume by any Burmese poet to be published in English. It also provides a valuable reflection of the new directions that Burmese poets have been taking in recent years..."
Author/creator: William B. Noseworthy
Language: English
Source/publisher: Cha: An Asian Literary Journal
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiancha.com/
Date of entry/update: 08 May 2016


Title: Why do I do what I do & why I love it: In defense of translation's target
Date of publication: 04 November 2013
Description/subject: "Huge linguistic and cultural ‘untranslatabilities’ exist between Burmese and English, but they should not spook the Burmese-English-Burmese translators. A good poem is always translatable. And, what is ‘translatable’ is entirely down to an individual translator inasmuch as what is ‘poem’ or what is ‘good.’ Always choose a translatable poem..."
Author/creator: Ko Ko Thett
Language: English
Source/publisher: Poetry International Rotterdam
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 15 May 2016


Title: Poetry of Burma’s literary frontiers: Wawn Awng, Mya Kabyar, Tin Moe and more
Date of publication: 27 July 2013
Description/subject: "The Burmese poetic canon has long been dominated by writers in the main cities of the central plains, in Burmese language, privileging text over oral form. The canon of contemporary poetry is embedded in the culture of the Bamar majority, and only provides a partial picture of poetry at a national level..."
Author/creator: Violet Cho, David Gilbert
Language: English
Source/publisher: Poetry International Rotterdam
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://www.poetryinternationalweb.net
Date of entry/update: 15 May 2016


Title: Tin Moe’s Exile
Date of publication: 27 July 2013
Description/subject: "Exile is ‘the unhealable rift forced between a human being and a native place, between the self and its true home: Its essential sadness can never be surmounted’. Edward Said (2001) Reflections on Exile and Other Essays, 2nd Ed, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, p.173. The late Burmese poet Tin Moe’s poems, written after he left his homeland, reflect his feelings grappling with exiled experience. The three poems I’m critiquing here are the pieces that best represent the exiled condition: Lwan Einmat Mha Nga Noe Hta Thaw (Awake from a Dream of Homesickness), Amay Boh Pan Khu Thwa Tawla (Flower-Picking Epic for Mum), and Hmyaw Lint Chat Mee Pon Kalay Hnit (With a Lantern of Hope)..."
Author/creator: Min Khet Ye (Translated by Wai Yan Phone)
Language: English
Source/publisher: Poetry International Rotterdam
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 15 May 2016


Title: From panegyrics to the end of poetry: a laconic introduction to Burmese verse
Date of publication: 01 January 2012
Description/subject: "The Burmese word for poem or poetry is kavya, derived from the Sanskrit term kavya, an ancient poetic style from India. Just like Sanskrit kavya, traditional Burmese poetry was inspired by the court, the patron of Burmese literature, and by Buddhism – with the possible exception of the sixteenth century tya-chins by Minister Padethayaza, whose muse was the proletariat of his time: peasants, toddy climbers and boatmen..."
Author/creator: Ko Ko Thett
Language: English
Source/publisher: Poetry International Rotterdam
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 15 May 2016


Title: Various Burmese Poets
Date of publication: 2012
Description/subject: from "Bones will Crow" - English and Burmese texts, with notes on the poets: 2010 the curvaceousness of burmese poetry, poetics and an unknown - Khin Aung Aye (co-translated by ko ko thett and James Byrne)...Mr. Charley, I Have Picked You - Maung Chaw Nwe (co-translated by ko ko thett and James Byrne) ...Lullaby for a Night - Eaindra (translated by ko ko thett)...An Evening With a City Girl - Pandora (translated from the Burmese by ko ko thett and James Byrne)...
Author/creator: Khin Aung Aye, Maung Chaw Nwe, Eaindra, Pandora
Language: English, Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: "Bones will Crow" via Asymptote
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://www.asymptotejournal.com/poetry/various-burmese-poets-bones-will-crow/burmese/
Date of entry/update: 30 September 2013


Title: Ko Ko Thett's blog
Date of publication: 2001
Description/subject: Author's website containing poems, articles, reviews, and translations in English. Includes some very useful links to other sources relating to Burmese literature, culture and politics. ["ko ko thett is a poet by choice and Burmese by chance. In between he is a literary translator, anthologist of contemporary Burmese poetry, and Burma/Myanmar researcher. Selections from his book, the burden of being burmese, have been translated into Chinese, Arabic, Portuguese, Russian and Finnish. After a whirlwind tour of Asia and Europe for about nineteen years, thett is happily resettled in his native Yangon."]
Author/creator: Ko Ko Thett
Language: English
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 08 May 2016


Title: BURMA (MYANMAR) - Poetry
Description/subject: Short biographies, poems, articles of 16 Burmese poets. Poets and Poems: Aung Cheimt (1948-), I've come to shoot geese, see a lady and tell lies about myself; Aung Cheimt goes to the cinema; Flashback Journal. Maung Day (1979-), A submission to the National Day special edition; Ghost story. Eaindra (1973-), Blues from a bull; Cashier; Milled timber. Ma Ei (1948-), A catastrophic rune; No fish today, mother. Han Lynn (1986-), Deck chair; Elevator; The bird watcher; When I perfume myself; Helicopter. Maung Chaw Nwe (1949–2002), Harbour; Champion, but a champion; The seal catcher. Maung Pyiyt Min (1953-), A bunch of 52 keys. Maung Yu Py (1981-), Yangon 2010; A UFO sighting yesterday at the edge of town. Mya Kabyar (1974-), Chin; Greater coucals; To the snowy mountain range. Pandora (1974-), The venomous; Chitchat between Hitler and Che Guevara at a beer garden; Barbarian village. ko ko thett (1972-), A few ways to eat a city raw; Chaos clock; Blindfolded Brahmins; A walk with history; Monosodium glutamate. Thi Mar Win (1982-), Summer poem; Moonlit night - 5; Moonlit night - 9. Tin Moe (1933–2007), Old guest; Shakespeare and U Punnya; When blood boils; Awake from a homesick dream; A caged chicken; With a lantern of hope. Wawn Awng (1942-), Pupa; Stray and tattered dogs; Sleepless night. Mae Yway (1991-) Such & such are the window displays of the city; Postponement; She who is going to add 1 to 20. Zeyar Lynn (1959-) A faith worthy of 45 million; Chronicle of kings; Big sister Lisa, have you been to Laiza?
Language: English, Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Poetry International, Rotterdam
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 30 September 2013


Title: The Dissident Blog
Description/subject: This and other issues carry literary texts and commentary from Burma
Language: English
Source/publisher: The Dissident Blog
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: https://www.dissidentblog.org
https://www.dissidentblog.org/en/issues/12-2014
Date of entry/update: 26 April 2016


Individual Documents

Title: A Study of the usage ‘Ger Aye who is beaten by her mother' in Myanmar Language
Date of publication: 26 July 2015
Description/subject: Introduction: "Myanmar language is derived from Tibeto-Chinese family of languages. Myanmar language is tone language because high and low tones determine different meanings of words. Besides Myanmar Language has sayings, proverbs and metaphors like other languages. The usage of ‘Ger A ye who is beaten by her mother’ is the metaphor of Myanmar Language.".....Paper delivered at the International Conference on Burma/Myanmar Studies: Burma/Myanmar in Transition: Connectivity, Changes and Challenges: University Academic Service Centre (UNISERV), Chiang Mai University, Thailand, 24-­26 July 2015.
Author/creator: Mon Mon Aung
Language: English
Source/publisher: International Conference on Burma/Myanmar Studies: Burma/Myanmar in Transition: Connectivity, Changes and Challenges: University Academic Service Centre (UNISERV), Chiang Mai University, Thailand, 24-­26 July 2015
Format/size: pdf (355K)
Date of entry/update: 20 August 2015


Title: Language-oriented poetry in Myanmar
Date of publication: 27 April 2011
Description/subject: "To many people outside Myanmar (Burma), it might come as a surprise that there is such a thing as Language-oriented Poetry in contemporary Myanmar poetry scene. As I happen to be the person responsible (‘the instigator’ / ‘the culprit’) of so-called Language-oriented Poetry in Myanmar, I feel that I should have my say on how this has come about in Myanmar, a country that has been under a military regime for the past 20 years or so..."
Author/creator: Zeyar Lynn
Language: English
Source/publisher: Jacket2
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 30 September 2013


Title: Contemporary Burmese Poetry
Date of publication: August 2009
Description/subject: Article by Vicky Bowman. The article was accompained by some poems when the issue was published online in August 2009, but I cannot find them. They were: Hyma Ein – The Submarine Island... Manorhary – The Boat Will Row Back to My Shore... Manorhary – Days After Snow... Phone Thet Paing – Diary
Author/creator: Vicky Bowman
Language: English
Source/publisher: Number 21 August 2009
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 30 September 2013


Title: The 'Great Guest' of Burmese Literature
Date of publication: April 2007
Description/subject: Burma's best-loved poet Tin Moe passed away in California. Until his last breath, poetry was his love and life... "Tin Moe served five years in prison for daring to write about Burma's democracy movement's ruling military dictatorship.
Author/creator: Khin Maung Sok
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 15, No. 4
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 04 May 2008


Title: The Refugee Who Fled to Burma
Date of publication: June 2001
Description/subject: Ashin Ananda was a unique refugee: Not only did he flee to Burma during the Ne Win era; he also became an important interpreter of Burmese culture for a Western audience. Thiri reflects on the legacy of this Buddhist monk from Estonia, who died just one year before his native country regained its independence from the former Soviet Union.
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol 9. No. 5
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Interview & Poetry of U Tin Moe
Date of publication: December 2000
Description/subject: "One of the country's leading writers and a Poet Laureate of Burma, U Tin Moe has published over 30 books. Born in 1933, he began writing poetry and essays in 1959 and has won numerous literary awards throughout his career. U Tin Moe became involved in the pro-democracy movement during 1988. As a result, he was imprisoned in Insein jail from 1991 until February of 1995. All his published works are banned in Burma. U Tin Moe left the country in April of 1999 and currently lives abroad. The following interview was aired on Radio Free Asia (RFA) in September 2000, and conducted by RFA correspondent Dr. Kyi May Kaung. The interview and poetry were translated for Burma Debate by Dr. Kaung. It appears here with the permission of RFA."
Author/creator: U Tin Moe, Dr. Kyi May Kaung
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Burma Debate" VOL. VII, NO. 4 WINTER 2000
Format/size: pdf (287K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: The Development of Political Themes in Minthuwun's Poetry
Date of publication: 1997
Description/subject: Min-thuwun is perhaps the greatest of living Burmese poets. Over the past 70 years he has published more than 100 poems covering a broad range of topics, including young love, the hardships of village and student life, and Burmese nationalism. Following a brief biographical sketch of the poet, this article presents a series of readings of selected poems that show Min-thuwun to be a passionate promoter of Burmese culture and an astute and subtle social commentator whose political messages are conveyed in figurative verse notable for its depictions of the victims of injustice. By framing his discussion within the periodization of 20th-century Burmese literature put forth by the poet-critic Mya Zin, the author demonstrates how Min-thuwun's career can be taken to exemplify the development of modern Burmese literature as a whole.
Author/creator: Saw Tun
Language: English
Source/publisher: Journal of Burma Studies Vol. 1 (1997)
Format/size: pdf (1.21MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.niu.edu/burma/publications/jbs/vol1/index.shtml (Vol. 1)
Date of entry/update: 10 March 2009


Title: Flowering
Date of publication: 1993
Description/subject: Union of Myanmar Literary and Journalist Organization.....Subject Terms: 1. Myanmar Poetry - 20th century..... Key Words: poem
Author/creator: Zawgyi
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ (Metadata: English and Burmese)
Source/publisher: "Collected Works of Saya Zawgyi", Vol.1, pp46, 1993, Union of Myanmar Literary and Journalist Organization, via University of Washington
Format/size: pdf (33K-reduced version; 245K-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/ZG0007.pdf
Date of entry/update: 30 November 2014


Title: Padauk
Date of publication: 1993
Description/subject: Poem on the Paduak flower...Subject Terms: 1. Myanmar Poetry-20th century
Author/creator: Zawgyi
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ (Metadata: English and Burmese)
Source/publisher: "Collected Works of Saya Zawgyi", Vol.1, pp42, 1993, Union of Myanmar Literary and Journalist Organization via University of Washington
Format/size: pdf (37K-reduced version; 280K-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/ZG0005.pdf
Date of entry/update: 30 November 2014


Title: Sittathukha Linkar, translated by Zawgyi
Date of publication: 1993
Description/subject: This poetry is translated from the "The Character of a Happy Life" by Henry Wotten.....Subject Terms: 1. Myanmar Poetry- 20th century
Author/creator: Wotten, Henry, trans. Zawgyi
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ (Metadata: English and Burmese)
Source/publisher: "Collected Works of Saya Zawgyi", Vol.1, pp41, 1993, Union of Myanmar Literary and Journalist Organization via University of Washington
Format/size: pdf (51K-reduced version)
Alternate URLs: http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/ZG0004.pdf (326K)
Date of entry/update: 01 December 2014


Title: On deposition -- Saya Phe's view
Date of publication: November 1987
Description/subject: Saya Phe, a patriotic poet, was very aggrieved at the loss of Myanmar's sovereignty. He wrote two poems which were a brief account of how and why Myanmar surrendered so quickly and easily. He believed General Prendergast's letter demanding surrender for negotiation of a new treaty was a lie and the people of Myanmar were hoodwinked.....Subject Terms: 1. Myanmar - History - The Third Anglo Burmese War, 1885, 2. Myanmar - History.....Key Words: 1. Deposition, 2. Phe, Saya.
Author/creator: KYAN, Daw
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ; (Metadata: English, Burmese)
Source/publisher: "Sit-pran", No. 110, pp. 70-72, via University of Washington
Format/size: pdf (230K-reduced version; 747K-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/MK0014.pdf
Date of entry/update: 22 October 2014