Ex-MP launches second poetry book

Ex-MP launches second poetry book

Nine years after his maiden work, former Member of Parliament Peh Chin Hua launched his second poetry collection, which includes a lyrical tribute to the late prime minister Lee Kuan Yew.

Chinese song Little Red Dot was adapted from a poem in the book and has been viewed more than 320,000 times since its video was posted on YouTube a month back.

It describes Mr Lee's transformation of Singapore into a garden city and the young nation's achievements after the ravages of war and internal strife.

"Songs are easier to pass on to the next generation than poems, because they can be sung and remembered by younger people," said Mr Peh, explaining why he adapted the poem.

"This was a good way to let more people know that Singapore's growth should not be taken for granted, and that Mr Lee is worth remembering."

The book of Chinese poetry, titled Love, A More Enriching Life, carries a foreword by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. The collection, said PM Lee, shows Mr Peh's passion and love for "family, friends, teachers, students, Chinese arts and culture and Singapore".

He added: "It is even more laudable that the book was published for charitable purposes. Although Mr Peh has left politics for some years, he still makes his mark through efforts to help society and the less fortunate."

The book was launched yesterday by National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan at Singapore Press Holdings' News Centre and the event was attended by several retired Cabinet ministers and MPs.

It raised about $620,000 for students from low-income families at the National University of Singapore's Business School and other educational institutes.

In the book, Mr Peh, a 67-year-old businessman, writes about his travels in many parts of China, such as Tibet and Sichuan, as well as less-ventured destinations like Alaska and Antarctica.

"Mr Peh is a person Singapore can be proud of," said Mr Khaw. "Even when he was making political progress, he cared deeply about the people he worked for. I believe this book will help people

redefine what love means to them, and how they can apply it to their lives."

samgohwy@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on April 25, 2015.
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