He was nothing more than a street cleaner, but he sang beautifully―with such gusto and dignity, in fact, that no revolutionary could help but fall in love with this man, who swept Saigon’s dusty avenues by day and led Party rallies by night. If Uncle Ho had a canary, this man could lead an entire choir to liberation. He sang for the hearts of many. He sang for dear Vietnam. But why did he have to go and marry my sister, too?
Thus began my mother’s dreadful story of how romance should claim no space in war.
— CONTINUE READING —
About Decolonizing Touch:
DECOLONIZING TOUCH is a monthly column about love and intimacy. If the revolution will not be televised, then the erotic, the heartbreaks, and interpersonal relationships most certainly will go unseen. But I believe that what happens in private is the most radical space of all. What does it mean to desire the Other? How does it feel to need the oppressor? I hope to answer these questions (and more) in my column.