Su Tung-p’o was born in 1037 in Mei-shan, a town situated at the foot of Mount O-mei in present-day Szechwan Province. He was educated by his parents and at the neighborhood private school run by a Taoist priest. Su experimented with nearly every form in traditional Chinese literature. He wrote rapidly and, unlike his contemporaries, did not often go back to polish and rewrite. Some 2400 of his poems have been preserved, and many of them were printed and published during his lifetime. For political reasons his works were banned for a while after his death in 1101.