Poetry as lifeline in ‘Still Tomorrow’

Jul 06, 2018
Photo by: Jian Fan Yu Xiuhua is China’s most famous contemporary poet.

Rockland — Rockland Public Library, 80 Union St., will screen the 2016 documentary (directed by: Jian Fan) “Still Tomorrow” Thursday, July 19, at 6:30 p.m. A collaboration with “POV,” PBS' award-winning nonfiction film series, this screening comes before the film’s Aug. 6 premiere.

Yu Xiuhua, a village woman with no high school diploma, becomes China's most famous poet when one of her poems is shared more than a million times on Chinese social media; and her book of poetry is the best-selling such volume in China in the past 20 years. Disabled by cerebral palsy, 39-year-old Yu has worked her entire life on her parents’ small rural farm, stuck in an unhappy arranged marriage.

Her poetry initially serves not only as a means of exploring feelings of desire and longing, but also as an escape from the drudgery of each day. As her popularity increases, her poems become a gateway to fame, wealth and greater independence. “Still Tomorrow” follows Yu over the course of a year on a transformative journey, at once moving and painful, towards greater artistic and personal freedom.

This year's free Thursday Film Series is hosted by the Friends of the Rockland Library. In addition to watching great films, viewers can enter a drawing for books related to the movie's topic or theme donated by the Friend's Book Stop. For more information, call 594-0310.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.

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