Red Pine, Bill Porter born in Los Angeles in 1943 grew up in Northern Idaho. Following a tour in the US Army, he attended college at UC Santa Barbara and graduate school at Columbia University. Uninspired by the prospect of an academic career, he dropped out of Columbia halfway through a Ph.D. program in anthropology in 1972 and entered a Buddhist monastery in Taiwan. After four years with the monks and nuns, he struck out on his own and found employment with English language radio stations in Taiwan and Hong Kong, where he interviewed local dignitaries and produced more than a thousand programs about his travels in China.|
One of the foremost translators, Bill's published translations include the complete poems of Cold Mountain (Hanshan), Pickup (Shide) and Big Shield (Fengkan), as well as the works of Stonehouse (Song Pojen) for which he was awarded the PEN West translation prize, and Laozi, for which he was a finalist for the same award. He is also the author of Road to Heaven: Encounters with Chinese Hermits. He edited The Clouds Should Know Me By Now, a book of poems by Buddhist poet monks of China, where his translations of the Ming monk Hanshan Deqing appear.
He currently lives in Port Tounsend, Washington.
The photo of Bill was taken in Xian. He stands together with the hermit nun he discoveredd on Nan Wutaishan south of Xian.