[Pictured: The Vietnam War Memorial, courtesy of myself]
All I know of you is all the sights of war.
A film by Coppola, the helicopter’s roar.
One day I’ll touch your soil.
One day I’ll finally know your soul.
One day I’ll come to you.
To say hello… Vietnam.
I recently heard this song on the radio and it really struck a chord with me. Now this is because of many reasons. One of which is because I am Vietnamese, and so is my entire family. I’d always love to sit down with my parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles to listen to their fascinating stories about Vietnam – a place that is so close to my heart, yet so far. I am ethnically Vietnamese, but I was born and raised right here in the United States of America. Another reason this song spoke to me was because i have never been to Vietnam. This song doesn’t just speak to me, but I think it reaches out to all those who are born to immigrant parents and have never been to their ‘home’ country, whether that be due to war or other obstacles.
The beginning of the quoted chorus represents my relationship with Vietnam. Granted, I know what Vietnam looks like today (peaceful, good music, good food, etc.) but it’s only through movies and videos that I know this. Among those videos, coupled with my family’s stories, I’ve come to associate a large part of what I know about the country to the Vietnam War – especially since it’s the greatest link between Vietnam and my home, America. I hope one day that I will be able to visit Vietnam in person. But with the crime rates increasing, the unsanitary food and water, and the looming threat of war with China, I think I’ll wait for the right time to have my questions answered.