Tuesday 23 December 2014

A poem from Minh

Minh writes: 'During these days of celebrations, i can't help but think about the refugees and people suffering in the Middle East. A poet told me this a while ago, "Take silence and respect it. If your heart is bleeding, make the best of it. There is heat in freezing, be a testament." I often think about my family history and stories that I have heard about the war. Below is a poem that I wrote in memory.'

Mid-Autumn Moon Festival

Red paper lanterns hung on every house -
candles lit like little moons,
tasty colored sticky rice,
and mooncakes with sweet fillings.
Grandmother – with a straw basket balancing on her head
walked out in the fields of rice paddies
on her tiny feet digging wet soil,
her day hasn’t ended yet.

In the Moon Festival of 1972,
with paper red lanterns
my brother and I ran across the fields
to see dances, street parades.
We heard helicopters roar above us,
deafening sounds with sky colors.
But what did we know -
we were children
and our day was only beginning.

We walked to the edge of our silent river,
waved to our distant grandmother,
but we were not sure if it was her.
Thirsty, with both hands
we dipped from our river
 it passed through our fingers – red.
Time stopped for me
memories are now laced with tears.

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