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Liu Xiaobo

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Liu Xiaobo was born on December 28, 1955, in Jilin Province, China. The author of numerous works of poetry, political commentary, and literary criticism, he was best known for his human rights activism in China. Xiaobo took part in the 1989 student protests on Tiananmen Square, spoke out against China’s one-party system, and promoted Charter 08, a manifesto calling for democratic change. He also served as the president of the Independent Chinese PEN Center from 2003 to 2007. Xiaobo received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010, during a lengthy prison sentence for his political opposition. During this detention, he also published the poetry collection June Fourth Elegies (Graywolf Press, 2012) and the essay collection No Enemies, No Hatred (Harvard University Press, 2012). He died, still in custody, on July 13, 2017. 

by this poet


Before dawn at home in Beijing, 6/4/2004
Fifteenth anniversary offering for 6/4

15 years ago
a massacre took place at daybreak
I died then was reborn

15 years have passed
daybreak bayonets dyed red
is still a blade fixed in the eyes

15 years have passed
I still have nightmares of those