The ocean-crossers* ate their fellow man’s flesh
For their whole lives, they have been constantly obsessed
For their whole lives, they have been watching the moon faded.
The flesh has reminded them of their conscientious remorse.
The ocean-crossers never cease their prayers at any service mass,
“Return after death”* will naturally become their home-coming paths!
Thirty years… their minds are still with the ocean
Their earnest wish is to clear off their painful obsessions.
The ocean-crossers bear a grave sentiment
To watch “boat people” transform into the Viet “on-tour” men.
In silky outfits, they return home to enjoy whimsical treats,
Telling in “perfect” detail by twisting words to make things sound great.
The ocean-crossers smile, boastingly fidget.
Praising solemnly the evil doctrine, which fools the populace.
Each high-ranking person owns hundreds of pretty girls and mistresses
They enjoy in the forefront, posing cross-legged!
The ocean-crossers return home to find a plan to surf,
A complicated task, but determined to never give up.
A nation “Being cornered leads to change, and subsequent success”.**
Finding connection to turn the history will certainly take place!
The ocean-crossers quietly compose
Music, poems, novels, depicting their homeland in great detail
Such as “Buffalos remember their paths; dogs their trails.”
One cannot cross the river, then burn the bridge to put an end to it!
Countless boat people, countless memoirs recorded.
Waiting for someone? A person well-behaved and honest?
The Communists abusing their power is couldn't be concerned less?
The nation’s hatred rises, so does its resources to waste!
The Ocean-Crossers! Uphold your noble spirit!
Make full use of your will to serve the people
(By) knocking down the treachery tactics
To clear up the undercover abroad!!!
The Ocean-Crossers ever guarded mountains, and subdued seas.
Combined all forces to form a unique authority
Gathered all militants not yet discharged, all with willpower
To readily engage in a combat for (their) Motherland,
You crossed the ocean; I also crossed the ocean!
You are a Man; I, an ordinary Woman,
From dust, I’ve dreamt of the crack of dawn
Which gives our people a piece of shiny triumphant music!
Poem: Ý Nga, 3rd April 2010.
Translated by Thoại Liên.
Written for the boat people who still struggle for the homeland!
*The Ocean-Crossers: those who fled from homeland by way of crossing the ocean.
** Private conversation with the poet.