Karen Resistance Poetry translated and introduced by Violet Cho
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Karen Resistance Poetry translated and introduced by Violet Cho. Tee Noe was born as M. No Noe in a village called Thavorta, Karen State, Myanmar (Burma) in 1952. After completing year 10 at a state high school in 1974, he worked as a junior clerk at a local government office in Karen State, eastern Myanmar. Later he joined the rebellion as a soldier for the Karen National Liberation Army and as a schoolteacher in Burmese refugee camps along Thai-Burma border. With no formal knowledge of the mechanics of poetry, Tee Noe has become a leading voice of the Karen diaspora. From a young age, Noe was drawn to poetry. He remembers singing a short hta (Karen oral poem) to thank his cousin who gave him a woollen hat as a present when he turned six: 'To school I run when the bell rings, with a woollen hat today I went.' "