Brief Interview with Zheng Min

The poet Zheng Min 郑敏, the last surviving member of the Nine Leaves 九叶 poetry group, is featured in a brief WSJ interview. Here’s an excerpt:

How would you describe the foundation of your writing?

I started to study philosophy to have a better understanding of literature, because I don’t think you can really understand literature without a background of philosophy. I loved both of them. I think philosophy without literature is too hard. Literature without philosophy has no depth. So you have to combine both.

Also, I think I’m influenced by Rilke, because I had that philosophy background. So I’m tied to German poetry more than contemporary American poetry.