"People's poet T. Alias Taib dies"

Utusan Malaysia, 8/19/2004, page 7

Tengku Alias Taib (T. Alias Taib), a prominent, versatile literary figure also known as people's poet, died of a heart attack after he performed the Maghrib prayer at his home in Lembah Keramat, Kuala Lumpur, yesterday.

T. Alias, born in Kampung Pandang Engku Sar, Batas Baru, Kuala Terengganu, on February 20, 1943, received his higher education at Kuala Terengganu Teacher's Training College from 1960 - 1962.

Prolific since 1964, the poet also founded the Terengganu Young Writers' Association and a member of the National Writers' Association (PENA). The writer-poet was also a linguist who strived to set the tone for what is now known as Bahasa Melayu. In issues concerning the Malay language, T. Alias was a stickler for proper use of the language, struggling and striving to ensure that Bahasa Malaysia was technically sound, proficient and proper.

He left behind an impressive body of work - poems, essays and features.

His best works are compiled in the following collection - Angin Badai (1975), Kuala Lumpur (1975), Pemburu Kota (1978), Tinta Pena (1981), Pertemuan (1982), Bunga Gerima (1986), Bintang Mengerdip (1985), Seberkas Kunci (1985) and Puisi-rama Merdeka (1986).

T. Alias' poems had a salient characteristic - social criticism that probed the problems faced by the Malay community. Using his unique perspective, T. Alias delved into issues of socio-economy, environment and humanities, always using the creative language for which he was famous.