NEWSLETTER from the Chinese United Association of Greater Phoenix -
BY: Homer Zhang / Zhang Xiuhong, reporting
What is traditionally lacking when overseas Chinese communities set up events is not the
content thereof, but what remains after the event has been accomplished. Especially in the early times
of the Chinese United Association of Greater Phoenix (CUAGP), because of insufficient Chinese
language media reporting plus a lack of systemic record-keeping with [consequent] loss of data, and
after a distance of years, it is now especially difficult to recover that history.
Mr. John M. Yee, a deeply respected community leader, in an article for his column “Chop
Suey House” [in Arizona Chinese News] mentioned the saying about “wild-swan talons on snow.”
This referred to the poem by Su Shi, [a famous literati and statesman of the Northern Song Dynasty,
who lived 1037-1101 C.E. and who is perhaps better known by his poetic sobriquet Su Dongpo, Su
Eastern Slope (Resident)] (in excerpt) –
After (one’s) whole life, where have (you) arrived?
Should this resemble flying wild-swans stepping on snow?
Upon the snow, a sudden talon-print.
How can (one) count the wild-swans flying (to and fro) east and west?
One idea from this poem is that, (in life,) one cannot determine the gatherings and scatterings
(involved). Another idea is that (nonetheless, to some extent) all things leave a trace.
(Through the) many years ago (now), our own local Chinese community has (produced)
numerous distinguished leaders – Leung Bok Ong; Sing Yee, Sr.; Henry Ong, Sr.; D. H. Toy; Harry
Tang; Frank Wong; and Frank Yue, etc., in fact, too many to recall in detail here. That generation of
leaders were renown, leaving behind their names and accomplishments; (however) besides their dear
friends and own families, who now will recognize them? This is precisely like flying wild-swans
(even) leaving no talon-prints in the snow.
This writer points out the importance of preserving historical information. Most recently, this
(past) situation is changing – after concerned persons have been searching and collecting materials for
many years, and also with the support and assistance of local overseas Chinese broadly, the 40+ year
history of CUAGP is becoming better organized and systematized.
From the 42-year-history of charitable work and the Program Books for the July 4th
(Celebrations), and photographs and materials from the 28 Miss Chinese Phoenix Beauty Pageants,
(selected) reprints will begin appearing for the first time in the July 4, 2010 Program Book. The July
4th Program Book is an annual publication of CUAGP (for that occasion); from now on, it will also
document important community events and developments. Our publication could also include
coverage of local overseas Chinese progress and history (not only) in Phoenix (but also) throughout
Arizona. (By doing so, the Program Book) will become a richer publication.