In keeping with the theme of amusing news, let’s take a look at the translation provided in ESWN of a poem written by Chen Shuibian‘s to his wife from prison, after he was detained for allegedly (with his entire family) laundering bribes and embezzled money worth well north of millions in US dollars. Its literary quality is perhaps best summarized by this response from a well known cultural writer: “What kind of shit is this! Please don’t waste my time. Go waste someone else’s time!” Since then, an interesting conjecture surfaced, that Chen could be trying to sneak hidden instructions out of his prison cell through this poem.
Some people argued that Chen’s quality of writing shouldn’t be this low. This poem could be an attempt to sneak instructions to the outside using some codes. It is pointed out that Chen’s transition to “One after another bucket, the bucket was not enough, so the tea jar will have to do” in the poem is too sudden and unnatural. Accordingly, the word ‘bucket”, which is used to wash stuff, could be constructed to mean how to handle money laundering accounts.
There are also some location names mentioned in the poem that could be pointing to places where accounts are established.
As for my take, I’d rather like to believe Chen is a lousy writer.