This poem is based on some recent knowledge about my roots:


My mother’s and father’s roots
are like of the air and sea,
so desperately disparate
were their worlds.
My mother’s call back to
the Independent rebels
who fought the French,
who had almost won
Vietnam’s freedom,
but may have massacred
Christians in the process,
just as the French had massacred
Annam in the process
of colonizing.
My father’s roots
collaborated with those French,
built railroads for them
to take over Vietnam,
and rename it Indochine.

If these ancestors had met,
I liked to kid
that they would most likely
do battle with one another,
in a bid for Vietnam,
in a bid for whose blood
would be remembered
as heroes,
and the other
as traitors.

But really,
blood runs through both lines,
blood runs through,
and marks them
with Vietnam’s blood.

One Comment

  • Anh
    Posted March 28, 2012 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

    what? your mom is against zee French? well that is a first for me