By Lam Thi My Da
Translated by Martha Collins and Thuy Dinh
All at once
Letting go like a waterfall
The heavy sky
Like a man's chest
Breaks open and love
A married woman who can't let go
I'm suddenly sorry the girl I was
Never met the rain
In Poet's Choice in the Sunday Washington Post Book World, Robert Pinsky writes, "Even great, lethal calamities can have redemptive consequences, however small in scale and little noticed. For decades now, American and Vietnamese poets have been translating between the two languages -- not only bringing two cultures a little closer, but trying to behold the meanings that still ripple and evolve from their terrible collision in war." Lam Thi My Da, he adds, "writes love poems, poems about the natural world, poems that question traditional roles of women.
I had written an entire entry and then my computer crashed and ate it -- it isn't even LiveJournal's fault, as I always write it out in a text file. Arrgh. So to sum up, we had a quiet Saturday; apaulled had to work from home on a huge project that went live at 6 a.m. this morning. Since he couldn't leave the house till late afternoon and then not for more than an hour or so at a time, I spent the day organizing -- had been looking for a picture frame I thought was in the storage room, under the bed or in the linen closet, hit zero for three, it's still AWOL -- and wrote a couple of articles, and played with the kids, and answered about eighty comments but still did not manage to catch up on reading new posts.
In the afternoon, because it was gorgeous outside, we decided to go to Locust Grove, a nature center with hiking trails near our house. It was about 50 degrees, sunny, a perfect day to walk in the woods. The nature center itself was open (it isn't always) but it's geared more for kids younger than ours, so after a quick look at the snakes and toads inside, we went onto the very muddy trails to and along the creek -- a branch of the same one that runs behind my parents' house where I grew up. We skipped stones, looked at what foliage there is at this time of year and enjoyed the sunshine. There's something about the smell of early spring mud that makes me feel good. When we got back to the van, we went to get groceries since we'd run out of margarine making lunch...and at this time of year "groceries" tend to include Cadbury Creme Eggs. Also the Girl Scouts were there, and how could I not support them by getting some Thin Mints? *g* After we came home, I burned my husband a DVD out of Grateful Dead mpgs, and the kids worked on puzzles together.
When eventually the boys went to sleep, we put on Blow Dry, which I had never seen before. In fact, the only things I knew about it were that it was about hairdressers, it featured a wonderful cast, and Alan Rickman had scissors tattooed on his foot in the film. Oh, why did none of the Rickman fans here ever tell me to watch it before?! I was expecting something like Best In Show, I suppose -- a quirky movie about people contending for something most people would not care about anyway. I had no idea it was the kind of movie that was going to make me cry in all the best ways! It's about a couple of hairdressers who used to be married before the wife ran off with their model in the middle of a competition. Their son now does cheap cuts with the father while the mother and girlfriend run another salon. Their former rival comes to town with his daughter for the British hairdressing competition which is being held in Yorkshire (and it does something to me to hear Rickman talking with Sean Bean's accent, let me tell you), and all hell breaks loose. There is a very funny subplot involving a funeral home and a hilarious sidelight involving sheep shearing. It's one of those movies where I was alternately laughing and sniffling throughout. I am so glad I couldn't find it locally for rental and spent the $6 for it off Amazon Marketplace!
Anyway, I know I said witty and clever things in my previous version of this post, but am tired and frustrated now, so I will leave you with some pictures. Hope everyone had a lovely Saturday!
My son's reflection and a water skeeter -- well, okay, you can't really see the skeeter but you can see the ripples it was making on the water around the reflected trees. I like the balance of the rock, the boy and the ripples in the photo.
Tree fungus and snow in closeup. I thought the colors made a nice contrast.
Running creek with human and animal footprints on the far bank. I love the way the afternoon sun looks in the woods.
Light on the underwater plants and rocks at the bottom of the creek.
"A wildlife pond is a special place." I am pretty sure the squirrel and woodpecker agree, as they are being fed for free. *g*