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Village Flavor

Saturday, 23/03/2019 00:01

. The first prize short story of the Mutitary of Art and Literature from 2015-2017


Thu Nhi was come back. A small packet of paper has taken out from the waist were differences perturbed my heart because a familiar scent. The smells softly of straw yellow becoming flaming change colour under the sun. The smell of the wind blows from somewhere in the fruit garden. And the smell ethereal as the smell emanating from the arrays of air clear. Suddently shaking hands, Smell my homeland there. The sweet smelling palms of my hands. The smell from the interstitial between my fingers, to drop connection drops falling, falling…Sharp fall in my heart throbbing, Kinh Bac ….Oh Kinh Bac. Are hometown calling us with these dear drops.

- Ma’am! Why are you crying?

Oh good! I’m crying? Can tears out of this dry eye?

Thu Nhi is kneeling there. Sorry, my child. You have no faults. You are my benefactor.

Now, who eles apart from you respect me, beside me. Only you can give me hear once again a voice choked with sobs of the homeland.

The fragrance wrap spread all over rustic, simple. The sounds sharper become dark colors like black pigmentation on dry fiber skinny pinch. Take a small threas to the lips, tighten. I was paralyzed because of the taste of the hometown not only on the tip of dry tongue.

Homeland leads me.

Kinh Bac Land, Vilage Tea. Small village glide vertically meandering river. Where the sun is spreading it’s not all. The sun is not scattered through of the hills, hollow green enormous sweet. Where the wind was tired of the rest of the day, it blew up the skirt of the women's every morning to smell the girl' s scent, the tea incense elegant in the wind. I see myself in that girl' s group. Cheeks, pink lips, slim hands surfing on the leaves. The leaves are very green, twinkle. The singing voice of the girl's is high and clear. More than the sound of the brook, the fog had broken every early morning.


“Green leaves, white flowers, fragrant smell

I' ll be waiting for you ”

I again see myself shyly to look at the night of the Hoi Giong.The man who held the drum look at me was warmer than fire of the mother.

The eyes fell down burning of my heels on sixteen year old.

That time, It' s sunny, the wind stops. The smell of tea was suspended in the middle of the sky. I waited forever, waiting to hear a taste of the homeland, a sound of homeland. But hopeless. All around me only have tears.

The tears of the mother's brown shirt put in my hand cash with a half - piece of the garden .The tears of the father' s with a white hair falling on turban. The tears of the brother' s face ran down behind the horse drawn carriage.

I try to turn my head, turn around. The dust raised up cover her face, lost. I' m trying to keep my eyes open, trying to find. Just see the dark red over the space. Yellow straw, thatched roof, tea hills, and river. Homeland is just a streak of the blue in the red sky. As red as a thousand.

Why the homeland hasn' t called me since i was sixteen?

I've embraced all the lonely sleep of the shadow of rice fields, the green hills of the tealeaves. How many times have i to sneaky, full of suffocation in the chest scent of tea fragrant every time.

The bag of seeds that i brought from home is just up to the small cluster of tree across the window. The tea sprouts up, trunks and leaves of a color. I can' t wait for a flower bud, one-way open, saw the tree-trunks stretching on the cold ground.

Trịnh Tiệp Dư suddenly wants to plant daisies, the whole garden was dug up, shredded.

The thousand of purple worn out, ragged. To the bamboo shoots also implied to broken cries, so what is the small part of the tea.

I do not cry before the leaves show of the green sheets, curled up groaning in the fire blazing forests a garden.

Sixteen years old, the fire of corner Trinh Tiep Du taught me: No power, human life like a humble pasture. Life - death is arbitrary (whether suddenly) of you.

I' m more skilled in every sentence, each bow. I' m cleverer on the pieces of betel nut, the fruits show. I irrigate daily, care for the flowers stripped little bit of my green homeland. Trinh Tiep Du is also a lonely woman, need friendship. I waited a day for cold rain cool down all Trinh Tiep Du candle sat sewing softly thawing:

“I heard God is on hight. Why do not i when Khe Trung Luu is absent, give some money to the inner so i can get you a tray of flowers.i’m going to make a nice tray of flowers, maybe God is pleased, he remembered her. ”

Tiep Du almost stabbed the needle at the tip of her finger. The trusted eyes look at me radiant fire a hope enough to beating all the rain.

I think about that look when i' m on the mesmerizing of scent, i' m learned how to distill with the money my mother gave my half of the garden. The fragrance of the great white flower is my name.

I' m remember that there's a look like that when i pretend to fall down the tray of flowers, so that people are sitting watching comedy look up.

And i, in the joy to the end between of the eyes, lips, breathe, no longer hovering, grasping by a glance. Only a tangle of the daisies is slipping up, swallowing, gulping down a thin tiny trunk of a tea.

Roll in the heart of the authority man that has been held by me, i know the first thing to ask God to grow up of the palace for me: a row of tea.

My homeland of green tea. Every afternoon tea tilted leaves to dripping each drop of water from my hand. The tealeaves i have been raised each nub, petals. But why the scent from the thin white petals, from the leaf shiny so pale, so lifeless. There are the white flowers, green leaves the same as the brilliant lantern spread throughout Long Tri.Unlike, and the other green texture is not enough to make me happy.

Homeland refuses me? Does not the tea scent embrace me? I have been waiting every night. I have been waiting. The leaves are green, the flowers are still white. But emotionless.

The underside said the back of me: “Tuyen Phi evil, growing tea does not get the scent. ”

Lan heard, swinging sword to the tongue of the bad guy, swung away more than haft a row of tea left. The leaves are all over the corner of the door. “I will find for you a tea fragrance! ” Lan said, then aggressively carry sword away.

Am Thiem, Le My, Luong Quy; Doai Cung became a frightful jumble tea garden.

I cherish each leaf; i wait for the flowers buds. Day and day rubbing the green leaf cross the nose and wait for a scent back. And i wait... as the afternoon of sixteen year old.

Lan once again frantically swing sword because of me.

Leaves fallen, flowers fall. The ladies came to pick up the petals, the broken branches that mourned the work of the fertilizer.

I picked up the dry tea Lan bring from the old village. Looking at his face full of street dust, looking at his eyes filled with eagerly anticipated, remember the face of the child running and fell behind the carriage horse.

I put on my nose, trying to take a deep breath dried tealeaves scattered, fierce. I pretended to float of familiar taste, which was bitter in every laugh, each sentence happy.

That' s enough! Lan! Lan has cut how many trunks, how many head of the people you also never get anything. I know. The homeland has cut me off a little bit of the last flavor.

Homeland cut me like a thousand daggers from my father cut off me.' I sorry that you having a bright eyes that is not a good heart''.

Daddy. A bright heart how can live between the conspiracy appropriations.

Daddy. A bright heart forever as well as your child also covered. Quietly disseminated, quietly wait, then quietly disabled in loneliness.

The bright heart Hue is still a flowers with the scented but not beautiful. How can attract butterflies in the sky, contemplating flowers by eyes not by heart.

“Be on the top, sister...sister.... are you happy?”

Trinh Tiep Du's biggest wait of a must be to return me with that question. So dry lips of the mouth whisper to my ear that i have drawn a cold smile. I can' t look at the torso , the hair of scaly indifferent to each patch of scalp.

I had to scream for the ladies to remove the rough arm are tangle like the trunk tree clashing, clinging. The arm of the dead has fallen, but why do i keep seeing those vines do not leaving me. They are keeping closer; wring my wrist, my mind, and my breath. I cannot sleep.

God regrets a little sympathy that tells me to visit Trinh Tiep Du in a long illness. God burned the daisies at the corner of the bow who dared to scare me. The golden petals have turned smoke to the sky and still not make my heart as light as smoke.

“…Sister… sister…Are you happy?”

Occasional or somewhere in the music, the lyric twilight of the night tilted wine, tilted the lantern. Somewhere between the whispers is the cuddly, warmth of the bed and board. I hear the string of broken words, murmur.

I am happy?

It' s funny, before me, after me, around me, are all the fears, cautious, hate. The poisoned arrows beneath the hidden under the heads bowed, bent back, the smile of ridicule.

I' m happy? When my hands are in power but to let go, lose the way lost my full brother.

Is that I hurting you? The child falls when run through down the day i was moved.

My whole life i just wanted to give you all the pleasure, the most beautiful. I want to make up for it, i want my brother to have everything he' s been poor childhood, even the first day of my adult life do not dare to dream.

But my love, my indulgence has turned Lan into tyrant, sexual misconduct

Oh, Mau Lan! Have you blame me,

I think it is like you do not have a sister like me?


- Ma’am, you need me to boil the water?

Oh, Thu Nhi still kneeling.

Panicked, i catch a little baby hand. This hand, and it' s going to help me with my hair not uniform. And each hand brought me more of the cold blanket frozen when the wind came through the door. The same hand that was not big enough, each of them touched my hands with some embroidered threads, which the candy sticks, and now a tea pack.

The old guard outside Vong Lang sympathy for me sometimes pretends to not see his ten-year-old daughter pacing. I have done nothing to make risk both of them. I fear for two people not once known. I pretend to be angry, i banish Thu Nhi. And then every time the girl' s heel falls back, it fades away from the block, my eyes are severed, and half tossed in the quite light behind the door, haft roll on the moss streaks of darkness. I see myself sitting in the doorway looking at the same block of flats in the afternoon, after... i' m wait, i' m inclined to see if there' s not a child' s head to fill up, a hinted shyly.

- Ma’am does not worry about it.

People don't arrest me. I will say I’ m going to go out and get lost here. Who' s going to incriminate children!

Children! Oh, ...children.... My son. He' s just a kid. They tried to kill him when he cried, demanding food. People locked up him, presses him. People are keen on his fragile lives. You know what? Every night i hear him calling: “Mommy! Mommy”. Don' t know how many times. But i am helpless, i let go. I can' t claw my son' s eyes when he' s dead, i can' t hold his immortal head in the heart and cry, can not wear my best clothes for him falls down as a fairy to the top as a god. How far is the Cung Quoc Cong Phu me and my son have gone?

The freezing night, and Duong refused to bring me a thin blanket. I understand her hatred. The hatred of the parachute is still a watchful grip of grief, the same expectation, and the other parts of the lowly. Women are forbidden from suffering, refugees, and hatred around each other for a love word. Both of us are in that tedious ruthless circle, which has not realized.

The gate has a door. But the iron bars also shackle it. Outside of the bars, i see some familiar faces. Glances figures low. People rushed hiding. I don' t blame them. It' s not just me who knows how to forget Trinh Tiep Du. I' ve been a wall that blames the vines

Between four heavy walls prison, i' m not crying. Not once for the outsiders to see me suffer, grieve.

I sing. I laugh.

The bed bugs do not make my less deep sleep. The mice robbers suddenly rushed out but do not make my meal have to put down the chopsticks halfway

I have to live. For the only reason: my son, my Can.

My god, i have to live to get it back for me.

So, Can why don' t you understand me. Why do you leave me when i' m never told to give up myself?

Duong pity me or the resentment that has reached the top of the point without giving me knows a Quoc Cong Phu white funeral.

I sang, smiled at the day my son died. I' ve eaten so much, i' ve been sleeping so good that my son' s under three feet of earth crying call “Mom"!

The cold walls of the palace cover the eyes, seal the ears, do they always carry the hunches, mothers' hearts? How does a mother like me no feel painful say goodbye from my son.

Ropes, iron bars, high walls. I' ve been out of my way with the only thought to go to the Quoc Cong Phu find my son. Tuyen Vu door' s full of guards we're all about to escape to see my son.

The Tam Phủ guards have tugged at the elbow, dragged me from the wharf, throughout like a crazy woman. The ladies grabbed my hair down the floor in the middle of Huu Cung. Shameful. Painful. But i keep my head high, i' m proud to think of my son.

My Can. My Dien Do Vuong.Can not have a mother who has to wear her face, bowing, crying begging.

Duong insult me, enchanted and slamming pout about of my God, change the throne. But the soldiers of Tam Phu poured together into the Lord, robbing and killing as blatantly like the middle of the marketplace. Her mother relied on them to remove us fangs, and she would have added the claws of the wolves. Then see how long they' ve been submerging.

Just love Quan Huy because of me brought down the plain.

I miss you. The cloak of dusty of a new day from Nghe An making my heart unstoppable, hang up.

I miss you. The hands did not dare take my hand, stopping in front of the bow: “ I will do the best to protect Thai Phi and Au Chua following royal decree of Chua Thuong".

I heard the screaming in the middle of palace, the elephant roared the heart, the rage. The wolf pack hook the man from the elephant ramp, they swoop in and rip him, chop him.

Alas! Bac Quan Cong full power now only bloody in the middle of palace.

Why do you listen to me not to let Duong tears flutter and forgive Khai? Why you stop me: “ Do not let the family members be humiliated. I know, you do not respect my words because I'm just a woman, a hen learning to train. You said i settle with the narrow minted heart”.

You forgot. What are difference between woman and small - minded? Those persons. I have seen them rubbing on the side. They pretended to be frightened, respectful. I' ve heard in their grip of their gratitude snakes hissing will revenge. But alas.

You didn't listen to me.

" Where do the birds fly?

Death at the top of two words Quan Cong”

The prophecy of two hundred years of my childhood i memorized it to penetrate into it? What other words for me, for the Trieu Chua indifferent appropriated.


Endless night. The wind blows through the cold door. Thu Nhi ignorant are fluttering. The smoke becomes thin dunes with my fingers caught red from fire. I remember the super can saw the shadow in the Noi Phu Thi Doai. The supper sing reunited with the song of birds in Ngu Uyen every morning.

Everyday early, i sit at the fire and like to self - assembling the stove, boiling the water for god. God is afraid my hand would be burned so he ordered the Chinese coal that has kept the fire long time and have a little incense. God loves me to sip every sip of tea, every sip of tea i planted in the air no flavorless but keep compliment. The God given courtiers cup of tea want to make me happy and keep compliment too. The tea ceremony with there fluttering, gathering with God, i cannot control my long laugh

I hid my little Lord of jasmine fragrance on each of his cups, even though the tea tasted pale, it would be nice to have a scent of the flowers. And they, keep the switch off, keep enjoy and let me laughing of flattery.

I' m tilt in teapot. Warm land received in the squeezed smoke. Must be warm pot from the soil brown Nghi Hung dark brown keep the taste longer?

I sat beside my warm side, savagely sank into the tea incense the water, spilling in the smoke. A thin little bit of wool creeping out of the warm heat, and it' s wrapped up in the breeze floating.

It' s so familiar; it' s very close to the dream. The tea scent consumed with the scent i mixed for my father while he doing lecture. The tea tree cap screws up my mother' s island of tealeaves exposed in the sun. The tea in Lan pocket, always hide his father drank tea, play. It’s tea flavor The whole village of the homeland has returned to me, the petals damselfly no colorless incense.

- I have nothing for you, only this ...

Thu Nhi picked up the stone ring on my hand, her lips trembled. If i can, if i' m still Mrs. Doai Cung, it' s still a Thai Phi; i want to give her more. But alas, with a prisoner imprisoned like me, a lifelong friend of mine, the tomb of this Vong Lang place like me, that' s the last jewelry.

Thu Nhi pray and gone.

The brown door closes itself, and i don' t want to leave the teapot. Nice hair, lipstick, eyebrows also drawn curved. I looked at myself on the table of brown fermentation; unfortunately, the white dress doesn't turn into a splendidly colorful shirt

Tea is strong enough, I' ll pour it. It' s not a broken clay cup that' s been placed in Duc Canh district in the middle of China that' s took every drop of tea in our homeland. It' s not the color the brown hole in the brown Phung - Long to show the five talons. I tilt the cup in my hand. A thin smoke spread from the mouth out of the cup. I see through the smoke, God is looking at me, he smiles lightly.

- I invite you!

I sip every drop of my homeland. Sip one' s last drop. How sweet of the homeland to soak up the tongue, drenched all my senses. The gentle homeland on each of our intestines is gradually tightening, throbbing pain. The taste of my throat is turning off, hot.

The strength, the homeland supports my heels. The strength, i we're step in the middle of the vague real.

The room is cramped, the narrow walkway, the shrine of smoke. No. It' s a river that bends to the green side of my homeland, and the road is wide open, rolling yellow straw mound. It' s a field the whistle and smells of the smoke.

And there, the green hills where the sun is scattered all the way out of the yellow wind. The girls' have gone up the hill? What do they sing in like a spring like the dew of a dream, like the morning mist? I listening


“ Green leaves, white flowers, incense

Royal palace, palace jade, cheeks fade embryo

The golden storey is a dream

Why don' t you forget to take your life. ”

Wow! Singing... I never heard that song before. I' d like to mix the song. My lips are moving, my throat shakes. But i' m tired. My eyes have been slightly melted... I do not writhe pain anymore. The smell of herbs cannot mix with the scent tea Kinh Bac homeland

Homeland has come to pick me up.

I' m just sleeping, a long sleep. To open my eyes is my home, the village of the green tea.

I' m just sleeping. And spirits like the wind fly up, rising up

On hight, floating across the white clouds as white as daisies, looking down at me and see a body woman with white clothes laying nature, eyes closed, and the hand is still holding on to a gold tablet in her heart.

2013 May


Translated by LE HOA



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