The Vietnamese - American Poetic Spirit

The Remembrance

Thong Ba Le

Peace On Earth

(In Memory Of Princess Diana)

Princess Diana, the rose, the "candle in the wind"
Enlightened the spirit of love with her will
And the determination of an angel,
Charming and caring for all who suffered from land mines
Eliminating all means that killed people's bodies and minds

On this day in that tunnel, she crashed and neither you nor I
Nor all living creatures on this planet had dry eyes

Echoing from the highest Himalayan mountains
Altering the beating chimes of Notre Dame
Retracting the ebb tides of the mighty Atlantic
Transforming the flickering light of a candle into a vigorous flame
Her spirit, her angel face, her tender smile will be missed.

The Quest

He was awakened in the silent night,
by the voice he heard somewhere from up high.
He opened the door to the patio deck
the moon was hanging in the western sky.

He pondered the words said in a deep voice,
sounding like a command, giving no choice;
a task, a mission, a crusade of some kind,
designated to him with the word "Ahoy".

He sat down on the cold patio chair
supported his head with both hands holding
his hair. He felt old for this kind of quest,
like the aged clown in the last country fair.

Nature surrounded him with a strange sound,
echoed by the insects winging around.
They uplifted his spirit, so he could
reach out to his star, once it had been found.

He vowed to fight, but this time in his life,
with a pen, never a shot being fired,
and tell the world what really had happened,
judgement day would come, quest of a knight.

My Big Losses

On the seventh day of a lunar New Year,
I lost my father when a snow storm was near.
That night the snow flakes were mixed with my tears,

I stood alone in the blizzard bareheaded without fear
of being frozen. My heart was colder right here.
I lost my mind in the dark, a sailor with no wheel.

I mourned his death over thirteen months and more
along with my Mom who stayed with him before.
I was forced to leave my beloved whom I adored

on the day I lost my country to the dictators.
The tragedy kept following me - in encore.
My Mom died in grief, I was suffering, my heart sore.

That was on a windy morning in April,
I was crying on my way to meet the Devil,
I wanted to challenge him with my skill !!!

The Refugee

Tears blur my eyes in the moonlit night,
as two shooting stars go flashing by
like the ones I saw thirty two years ago,
aboard a fishing boat carrying people as cargo.

I came here with empty hands.
I traveled along lakes, beaches and riverbanks,
across green meadows of this vast country
watching sunsets and sunrises from the horizon at sea.
I wandered through forests, jungles, over mountaintops,
as drenched leaves, heavy with raindrops
wetting everything underneath, strain
and twist and undulate like a soul in pain,
dripping tears, as the keening wind blows
and carries away memories as they flow.
I wondered, then had only began to know,
my kind of pain that endured
and I was too full of sorrows,
awakening in many night, waiting for tomorrow,
thinking of what must be done for my future.
There were times when remembering
of the past would have not enough.
Times my restless spirit need an ocean for inspiring
not the river serene and simple as such.
My soul is still longing for the old country
that dominated by skeletons, ghosts and memory
by a war after another war,
and that pain always stays with me.
I worship in my sadness; I pray for
some goodness, happiness and more.

Who am I? A castle built in the sand?
A ghost of the past? A lost memory bank?
The shadow of my life follows me always
and finally sets me free in the wonder landÖ far away./.

The Sorrows

On the deck on a windy evening at sea,
with torments, he is longing for the old bay
standing on the pier with her long hair in the breeze,
she suffers, cold dew like teardrops on her face.

His ship was leaving on that evening,
she held their child waving her little hands
looking to the horizon with gray clouds flowing.
He looks back, but he sees just an empty land.

He's wandering under the starry sky
and the stormy sea in the heart of love.
The falling stars were seen up high,
his dream is flying back to that cove.

In the western sky there's a hanging crescent moon.
Its pale beams that fade away into gloom,
reach beyond that highest mountain soon
to hide his sorrows but his love always blooms.

Stand Up America

(In memory of 9/11/2001)

Stand up America for the next generations to come,
for the people who love and call this land “home”;
for the mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers and friends.
Their lives lost in rubble of glass and chrome.

Stand up America show your spirit and fight
for freedom, the American way of life;
for good against evil, man against monster;
for our flag waving proudly in the sunlight.

Stand up America to overcome this challenge
sent by cowards who hijacked our planes,
those plunged into our hearts and made us bleed tears,
thousands of innocent lives to avenge.

Stand up America together hands in hands,
we’ll rebuild and preserve our precious land
and light up the flame of liberty and democracy.
No terrorists can defeat us, no matter their plan!!!

God Bless The U.S.A

Thong Ba Le
Virginia, October 2001


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