A FALLEN LEAF FLOATING IN THE SEA OF THE UNKNOWN
“So the pirates didn’t do anything to your family’s boat?”
“No. They did not do anything.”
They only circled our tiny boat, nearly flipping and drowning the 150 Vietnamese refugees who had been drifting in the sea for six days without food and a dwindling supply of water.
They only made us confront the truth that we bitterly swallowed for the past decades of war: the only thing certain in life is death.
They only took away all of our life’s savings, ripped from the stitched seams of our ragged clothing. A collective offering to the spirits of the sea, we prayed for a few more breaths of life.
They only offered a morsel of hope in exchange for a few sacrificial gold ounces. They directed: land is just east of here. Survival is 25 miles away. We whispered: A future for our children is possible.
So to answer your question: No, they did not do anything to our fucking boat.
They did not rape the women, kill the men, and throw the children overboard.
I am sorry to say that there is no clear villain and hero in this story. So to whom do we cast the shards of blame?
They only invaded our boat—a fallen leaf floating in a sea of the unknown.
let’s have more angry asian american writing